Lapworth Museum of Geology - The University of Birmingham - Edgbaston, Birmingham, U.K.
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Mike_bjm
N 52° 26.948 W 001° 55.925
30U E 572576 N 5811530
Quick Description: The Lapworth Museum of Geology is located within the Aston Webb A Block building just off the Ring Road South at the Edgbaston Campus of the University of Birmingham.
Location: West Midlands, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 6/6/2020 11:18:56 PM
Waymark Code: WM12JVE
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member wayfrog
Views: 3

Long Description:
The Lapworth Museum of Geology is located within the Aston Webb A Block building just off the Ring Road South at the Edgbaston Campus of the University of Birmingham.

The Museum has "collections of rock, fossils, minerals, historic maps and documents; many of the collections are historically scientfically important. Collections from the West Midlands and many other worldwide localities." Source

“The Lapworh Museum of Geology holds the finest and most extensive collections of fossils, minerals and rocks in the Midlands. Dating back to 1880, it is one of the oldest specialist geological museum sin the UK. From fossils to volcanoes, diamonds to dinosaurs the museum captures the imagination of all ages.

The collection contains in excess of 250,000 specimens. In addition to rocks, fossils and minerals, there are large collections of early geological maps, equipment, models, photographic material, and also zoological specimens and stone axes.

The Lapworh Archive contains one of the most complete records of the work of a scientist of that period. A visit to the Lapworth Museum provides an insight into how the Earth formed and changed through time, and how life on earth developed and evolved” Source

The Main Gallery of the Museum contains a very immpressive rock display the "Rock Wall" the floor ceiling display has 125 rock samples which are divided into the three main rolkc groups (sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous).

To the right of the rock wall is a an orange board with the following information on the left-hand side:

Rock Wall

"The Rock Wall contains more than 125 rocks specimens, divided into the three main rock groups: sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous. Knowing which group a rock belongs to gives us basic informatio about how it formed.

Even rocks in the same groups can look very different from each group can look very different from each other. You will probably notice the variety of colours first, but look closer to see more differenes.

Every rock holds clues about the enviroment in which it formed and what happened to it later. Geologists learn how to interpret these features, which include colour, grain/crystal size and shape, fossil content, sedimentary structures, competence (strength), cooling structures, faulting and folding.

All the Rocks on Earth are called the rock record, because they contain a preserved history of what has happened on Earth. To discover Earth's secrets, we only have to learn how to read this record.

How the three rock groups formed

Sedimentary rocks created in layers on the Earth's surface - on land, the sea floor or in rivers. This happens when loose sediment , or weathered grains accumulate and are cemented together - or when water evaporates. Sedimentary rocks may show bedding structures or contain faults. They can be quartz rick (for example, sandstone) or maade just of calcium carbonate (for example, limestone).

Metamorphic rock is created deep under Earth's Surface, when heat and pressure are applied to igneous or sedimentary rock. This causes a solid -state change called metamorphism. It can happen as one tectonic plate is forced under another one - is subducted - in mountain building or during regional deformation. Metamorphic rocks show layers of recrystallised minerals, often leading to a fabric (foliation) within the rock.

Igeneous rock forms beneath Earth's surface when magma crystallises, or on Earth's surface when molten lava from volcanoes cools and solidifies. Igneous rocks are crystalline. Small crystals indicate lava has cooled quickly, on the surface or in contact with water. Larger cystals, show that cooling happened more slowly."

Below this information is a 'key' to the Rodk Wall which shows the postion of each box in the wall as with divided in 3 irregular columns corresponding to the three main rock groups a d numbered from 1 (bottom right-hand corner) to 125 (top left-hand corner). The Igneous rocks are displayed in the left-hand column of the wall, Metamorphic rocks in cental column and Sedimentary rocks in the right-hand coloum of the wall.

On the right-hands side of the board all 125 rock spicemens are shown split into the three main rock groups:

Sedimentary rocks are specimens 1 to 41 (shown with black numbers in a yellow boxes).

Igneous rocks are specimens 42 to 75 (shown with white numbers in grey boxes).

Igeneous rocks are speciments 75 to 125 (shown with white numbers in black boxes).

A second and no less impressive display is contained in the Mineral Gallery. This area has a collection of many samples of different rocks and minerals and contains a display which gives information on the properties of different rocks including density, magnetism, lustre, hardness and flouresence.Source


Address: School of Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT

Tel: 0121 414 7294

Contact Person(s) Mr J. C. Clatworthy (Director), Ms. A. B. Chrystal (Learning & Community Development Officer), Ms. M. Tully (Curator)

Website: ""

Admission: Free Average Length of Visit: 1 – 2 hours

Opening Hours:

All year round: Wednesday 10 am to 5pm
Weekends 12 noon – 5pm
Other times by arrangement
Closed Christmas and Easter


Lecture room and research facilities available.


• Guided tours by arrangement
• A programme of public lectures
• Calendar of family activities
• A schools programme
• School loan collections
• Identifications
• Temporary exhibition space with regular changing exhibitions and displays

Disabled Visitors: Disabled Access

How to get there:

Train: Cross City Line trains from New Street to University Station
Bus: 61, 62, 63 from the city centre
Car/coach: Take the A38 (Bristol Road) out of Birmingham City centre for 3 miles, as the end of dual carriageway turn right into Edgbaston Park Road; University campus barrier 400m on left.

Parking: Cars: car parks on campus, directions from barrier attendant

Coaches: free coach parking on campus, directions from barrier attendant

The Lapworth Museum of Geology: A Review

By: J. D Dixon
“Upon entering the flag-waving doors of the Lapworth Museum of Geology, visitors are greeted with a stunning scene. It looks as if a fearsome Allosaurus is charging right for them. Thankfully, this is just [the] cast of a skeleton, and not the ferocious predator in the flesh.

From the get-go the Lapworth Museum brings an exciting take on prehistory and geology seldom seen elsewhere in Birmingham. An especially nice factor is that it is free, so the museum is accessible to anyone who wishes to go. The museum itself dates back to 1880, when it occupied the top floor of Mason College, which later became the University of Birmingham. In1900, a new University of Birmingham was designed, but it was not until the 1920’s that the museum actually moved into the Aston Webb building, where it now resides. The museum was officially reopened in 2016 and continues to be an innovative experience for researchers and members of the public alike.” Source






Type of Display: Geological

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Poole/Freeman visited Lapworth Museum of Geology - The University of Birmingham - Edgbaston, Birmingham, U.K. 6/19/2019 Poole/Freeman visited it