What are RIGS?

RIGS are geodiversity sites of special local importance and given added conservation protection by Local Authorities once designated.

How are RIGS chosen?

RIGS are chosen according to four criteria: educational (lifelong learning), scientific, aesthetic and historical value. Sites are assessed by RIGS group for safety and accessibility, scientific accuracy and boundries. Some sites are open access areas and some are on private land.

1. Old Man of Mow

1. Old Man of Mow

2. Beeston Castle

2. Beeston Castle

What is a RIGS group?

RIGS groups identify, record, assess and often manage RIGS in their area. Most RIGS groups are members of UKRIGS, the national umbrella organisation and are run by volunteers. These volunteers are from the local community and industry, and include Earth scientists, consultants, planners, teachers and conservationists who help to evaluate sites.

What is Rockwatch?

Rockwatch is a nationwide club for geologists between the ages of 8 and 16 years. Chester Rockwatch is based at the Grosvenor Museum. It meets several times a year with a mixture of indoor activities and field trips. Children under the age of 16 years must be accompanied by an adult.

Cheshire is made up mostly of Triassic red rock divided into Sherwood Sandstone and Mercian Mudstone,
Cheshire has many fascinating geological features. Here are just a few examples:

1. The old Man of Mow was left behind when a Carboniferous Millstone Grit quarry closed,
2. Beeston Castle is the remains of a large Edwardian castle made of local sandstone
3. Minerva Shrine – 2,000 year old carving of Roman Goddess in Chester Pebble beds.
4. Carvings in sandstone were made at Farndon over the last few centuries ((right) and then in the Mad Allen Hole (left).
5. Deep grooves in Thor’s Stone were probably made during the last Ice Age.
6. Moston Long Flash was formed when salt beds dissolved as they rose to the surface and formed a depression or hollow.

3. Carving of the Roman Goddess, Minerva.

4. Mad Allen’s hole.

What does Cheshire RIGS do?

Cheshire RIGS recommends sites to local authorities for designation as Regionally important Geodiversity Sites. It also works in partnership with other community groups and businesses as part of the Cheshire region Local Geodiversity Action Plan to maintain Geodiversity in Cheshire.

Where are the Cheshire RIGS Sites?

Cheshire RIGS are located all over the Old Viceroy county (pre 1974). Some are in towns and cities and others are in the countryside. There are a number of walking trails produced by the Cheshire RIGS, to help you explore some of the safe and accessible sites.

5. Thor’s Stone

6. Moston Flash

What is an LGAP?

An LGAP is a Local Geodiversity Action Plan.

The Cheshire region LGAP aims to contribute to the maintenance and improvement of the well-being of the Cheshrie Region, by safeguarding the geology, geomorphology, soils and landscapes of the area.

Cheshire RIGS is a lead partner in the CrLGAP.