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The Mid-Late Holocene Evolution of Southern Walland Marsh and the Origin of the ‘Midley Sand’

Kirby, JR and Clarke, D and Shaw, TA and Toole, E (2010) The Mid-Late Holocene Evolution of Southern Walland Marsh and the Origin of the ‘Midley Sand’. In: Waller, MP and Edwards, E and Barber, L, (eds.) Romney Marsh: Persistence and Change in a Coastal Lowland. Romney Marsh Research Trust, Sevenoaks, pp. 23-51. ISBN 978-09566575-0-3

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Abstract

This paper documents new litho-, bio- and chronostratigraphic information and sedimentological data from sites at Sandyland on Broomhill Level, Midley and Lydd. These locations are situated between former tidal inlets at Romney and Rye which were instrumental in driving Foreland and Marshland environmental change during the last 2000 years. Peat formation commenced c. 4500 cal. yr BP at Sandyland and after 3700 cal. yr BP at Lydd. At Sandyland, eutrophic fen carr communities were replaced by acidic, nutrient-poor Myrica-dominated vegetation from c. 4100 cal. yr BP, a shift reported from other sites on Walland Marsh and from neighbouring areas. At Lydd, there was no local development of Myrica, probably due to the proximity of the site to tidal channels associated with an opening in the barrier at Hythe. Inundation occurred sometime after c. 2300 cal. yr BP at both sites although the upper contacts of the peat are sharp and have probably been eroded. The sedimentological investigations of the surface outcrops of ‘Midley Sand’ at Sandyland and Midley, combined with other stratigraphic and palaeogeographic evidence, are consistent with deposition in a tidal channel. The data support the existence of an open-ended channel connecting the inlets at Romney and Rye between AD 700 and the 12th century AD, which had already begun to infill and become reclaimed prior to the storms of the 13th century AD. The Wainway Channel appears to be a later feature which developed in the area after the closure of the Romney inlet and enlargement of the Rye inlet as a result of these storms.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Divisions: Natural Sciences and Psychology
Publisher: Romney Marsh Research Trust
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2016 13:00
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2016 13:00
Editors: Waller, MP and Edwards, E and Barber, L
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/3255

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