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SquishyPenguin
Hi all! I kind of stumbled across this site 😉 I don't really know much, if anything, about fossils, other than that I think they're pretty cool! I just have a couple that I've bought from stores. I've never been fossil hunting and didn't even really think it was a thing here in the UK. I really don't know anything about it, but would like to have a look at local locations - I just want to be sure I do it safely and within any regulations/etc.

Basically I'm just looking for a bit of advice and to have some questions answered if anyone's willing.
I'm really interested in going to the Pakefield location since I think it's the closest one to me. It's listed as SSSI, I did open the PDF linked there but didn't really understand what I was looking at to be honest [redface] 

Can someone tell me what restrictions, if any, are in place for this site? I have a couple questions [eek]
  1. Can I visit this site at any point, or do I have to pay or notify someone?
  2. What does "Hammering the bedrock" entail, exactly? How can I identify and avoid the bedrock?
  3. Fossils can be found on the 'Foreshore' at this location, what is this/how can I be sure I'm looking in the right place? Will I need any tools to remove them from this?
  4. Fossils can also be found in the cliff face - where abouts in the face would I be looking? How do I go about this in a safe manner?
  5. What is scouring/How do I know when is a good time to look for fossils?
  6. Do I have to report any findings, or is it just good practice to do so?
 Any general tips on what I should keep an eye out for? As someone who's never been hunting, I might miss obvious signs a fossil might be right under my nose. Eg: the pakefield page mentions "blue-grey nodules or pale yellow nodules can be found" within clay, how do I spot clay/are these little nodules obvious at all?

Fossil hunting sounds like a really nice day out and I'd love to come back with something that I've found all on my own, I don't quite have the money to spend on buying any kits from the store here, but I'd still like to try giving fossil hunting a go <3 Thanks for taking a look and helping me out!
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Elbert
Hello, I myself am not familiair with this location, so do not know if you can acces it freely.
Maybe you can find information at "locations".

Bedrock is the solid rock where the cliffs and beach are made of; on a SSSI it is mostly not permitted to break this rock in order to collect fossils.

The foreshore is the beach; on most SSSI`s  you may collect loose rocks and boulders and break these to collect fossils.

The cliffface is a very dangerous place to look for fossils; unless you have a strong deathwish it is not wise to search for fossils at the foot of a cliff; only recently a young girl died whilst playing/searching at the foot of a cliff in North Yorkshire; even when cliffs look very solid there can be falls.
A good indication for risk of clifffalls is the amount of rubble at the foot of the Cliffs, but no rubble does not allways mean it is safe. Sometimes the tide removes the fallen rock more or less immediatly.

Scouring is the proces of moving around the rubble on the beach by the waves, normally in stormy conditions.

If you find fossils of sientific importance on a SSSI, you need to report your find. In England you report at Natural England, the keeper of SSSI`s.

Good hunting and be safe.

greetings, Bert

the search is as valuable as the finds...
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Gandalf the White
Also be extra carful around recent falls because there is a high chance that there are still some more very loose rocks around waiting to fall.
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SquishyPenguin
Thanks so much guys!
I've contacted Natural England, thanks for mentioning them. Hopefully they can better fill me in on some things. I think I'll stay away from the cliff face 😉 I might go to the Corton site instead, since it's not an SSSI.
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admin
Pakefield has been covered up for a good few years now. There is so much sand that the sea never washes the cliff, so they are becoming badly overgrown. The sand from Kessingland Beach has moved northwards

Corton is currently very dangerous, large sections of sea defence have collapsed in places with metal spikes, loose concrete slipways twisted upside down and it why it’s been fenced off by the council.

Local places around here are quite poor at the moment and are not a great place to start. You would be much better heading south to Ramsholt or north Norfolk West Runton, Overstrand.

Happisburgh has recently been yielding a lot of stuff but not sure if it’s still scouring.
UK Fossils Forum Admin
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SquishyPenguin
ukgeltd wrote:
Pakefield has been covered up for a good few years now. There is so much sand that the sea never washes the cliff, so they are becoming badly overgrown. The sand from Kessingland Beach has moved northwards

Corton is currently very dangerous, large sections of sea defence have collapsed in places with metal spikes, loose concrete slipways twisted upside down and it why it’s been fenced off by the council.

Local places around here are quite poor at the moment and are not a great place to start. You would be much better heading south to Ramsholt or north Norfolk West Runton, Overstrand.

Happisburgh has recently been yielding a lot of stuff but not sure if it’s still scouring.


Ah wow that's a shame to hear about those two sites, but thanks for letting me know! I'm sure it'll save me some hassle and disappointment of going and either not finding anything or not being able to get there if it's fenced off.
Ramsholt does interest me though a 30-40 minute walk could be a huge pain for me, and again the site being SSSI concerns me since I don't really know what I'm doing [eek] Runton also sounds good - though how do I know when a site is currently scouring? Not sure I can go anywhere before christmas as my family don't want to go in the winter.
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admin
As long as you don’t dig into the cliff face then there are no restrictions.

But as with most locations digging into the cliff is
Not the way to find fossils.

The sea does most of the work for you, it acts like a giant sieve, washing the cliff and forefore and “sieving” out the contents.

Fossils st Ramsholt are best found by looking
Along the foreshore. There are no restrictions for doing so when just picking up fossils.

You can find fossils anytime at West Runton. But best visit on a low tide as most fossils are found on the foreshore where again there are no restrictions to pick up fossils.
UK Fossils Forum Admin
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SquishyPenguin
ukgeltd wrote:
As long as you don’t dig into the cliff face then there are no restrictions.

But as with most locations digging into the cliff is
Not the way to find fossils.

The sea does most of the work for you, it acts like a giant sieve, washing the cliff and forefore and “sieving” out the contents.

Fossils st Ramsholt are best found by looking
Along the foreshore. There are no restrictions for doing so when just picking up fossils.

You can find fossils anytime at West Runton. But best visit on a low tide as most fossils are found on the foreshore where again there are no restrictions to pick up fossils.


I see! that helps so much, thanks 😃 Hopefully I can make a trip one day, and hopefully I'll find something.
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henryrb
Good luck! [smile]
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