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What lies beneath: the geology of Strathkelvin

Thursday, 14 March 2024
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Event Category:
Lecture Room 407, Boyd Orr Building
University Avenue
Glasgow, G12 8QW United Kingdom

Kirkintilloch and the Campsies from Waterside Bing, January 2018 (Murray Reid)

Dr Murray Reid

Strathkelvin covers the valleys of the Kelvin and Allander Waters north of Glasgow and extends from Milngavie and Bearsden in the west to Kirkintilloch and Kilsyth in the east. The presentation will describe the geology of the area, concentrating on outcrops where the strata can be clearly seen and looking at evidence for what lies beneath the surface in areas where rock is not exposed. In the north, the lavas and ancient volcanoes of the Campsie Fells are well exposed but most of the built-up areas are underlain by sedimentary rocks of Carboniferous age which are largely covered by thick layers of glacial and alluvial materials. Coal, sandstone and limestone have been exploited and traces of the workings remain. The Kelvin Valley forms a major east-west transport corridor across Central Scotland and has played a significant role in the history of Scotland.

Murray is a retired engineering geologist who lives in Kirkintilloch. He was born in 1954 in Giffnock on the south side of Glasgow and grew up there. He went to St. Andrews University in 1972, graduating with a BSc in Geology in 1976, then to Aberdeen University, where he carried out a PhD on the weathering of soils in a moorland area, graduating in December 1979. In January 1980 he started work as an engineering geologist with a small site investigation company in Cumbernauld, which led to him moving to Kirkintilloch in 1981. After five years, he moved to Babtie Geotechnical in Glasgow, working on a number of large infrastructure projects in the transport and water supply and treatment sectors. In 1995, he moved to the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) in Crowthorne, near Reading in the Thames Valley, where he worked principally in the recycling and sustainability sectors. He retired from TRL in 2017 and moved back to Kirkintilloch. He joined the Kirkintilloch and District Society of Antiquaries and became Secretary in 2021. He is a keen hill walker, having climbed all the munros, though these days he concentrates more on the HUGHS (Hills Under Graham Height, i.e. < 2,000ft.) and low-level walks on the excellent network of footpaths in East Dunbartonshire.