Saturday 7 December (Geoconservation Day): Barrow Hill. Directed by the Barrow Hill LNR warden. Meet on Vicarage Lane off High Street, Pensnett (A4101), at the top end near to the nature reserve and St. Marks Church, at 10.30. The day will involve vegetation clearance in the East Quarry. Wear old clothing and stout boots or wellies. Please bring gloves and tools if you can, i.e. brushes, trowels, loppers, saws, rakes etc. Safety glasses and hard hats will be provided where necessary. Bring a packed lunch and hot drink. We will aim to finish around 2.30.
Monday 16 December (Indoor Meeting, 7.00 for 7.30 start): Members' Evening and Christmas Social. The BCGS Members' evening is always a special occasion and this year members will be treated to three 20 minute talks, plus a buffet, and various objects from the Dudley Museum archive to identify. The first 20 minute talk will be from Ray Pratt on the heat network potential of the Sherwood Sandstone underlying Solihull, the second from John & Julie Schroder on the geology of the Kerlingarfjöll mountain range in Iceland, and to complete the evening Graham Worton will give insights into dinosaurs old and new during a guided tour of the Museum.
Saturday 18 January 2020 (Geoconservation Day): Wren's Nest. Directed by the Reserve wardens. Meet at 10.30 at the Warden's office, at the end of Fossil View (the road into the new housing estate, formerly Mons Hill College). Parking along Fossil View. The day will involve some scrub clearance and fossil hunting not far from the Warden's base. Bring gloves, stout footwear and packed lunch. Wardens will provide tools, hard hats if necessary and a hot drink. Finish around 2.30.
Monday 20 January 2020 (Indoor Meeting): 'Jurassic Brain Teasers'. Stephan Lautenschlager (Lecturer in Palaeobiology, University of Birmingham). Fossils represent physical evidence for the existence of extinct organisms and have vast potential for the study of ancient life. However, the majority of fossils are preserved in the form of hard-tissues (e.g. bones and teeth), while soft-tissues, such as muscles and internal organs, have withered away. Using modern computer technology and digital visualisation techniques, it is now possible to reconstruct some of these soft-tissues in fossils. The anatomy of the brain is of particular interest, as it can reveal information about extinct animals' behaviours and how they might have sensed the environment around them.