Author Archives: Ruth Siddall

About Ruth Siddall

Geologist, geoarchaeologist and co-author of The Pigment Compendium. Follow @R_Siddall; Facebook|Cultural & Urban Geology

Geology on Postage Stamps: #1 Energy Resources, Great Britain 1978

This set of GB commemorative stamps was issued on 25th January 1978, the first issue of commemoratives for that year. The make the link between energy and geology in a world when alternative energies were a mere twinkle in most peoples eyes. … Continue reading

Posted in Geology, GeoStamps, Philately, SciArt, Science, Stamps | Leave a comment

First I was afraid, I was petrified … A short history of scary silicified log cabins

This is urban geology at the extreme; petrified wood is not exactly a common building stone, though it is becoming more frequently seen as a decorative stone, used for interior feature walls and even chopping boards and coasters. However it … Continue reading

Posted in Building, Building Stone, Dinosaurs, Fossils, Geology, Stone, Urban Geology, USA | 4 Comments

Urban Geology in Birmingham

I was invited to come back to Birmingham by Julie Schroder of the Black Country Geological Society to update and expand previous building stone walks of the city created by Julie, Eric Robinson and Paul Shilston. I was very pleased to … Continue reading

Posted in Birmingham, Building, Building Stone, Fossils, Geology, Stone, Urban Geology | Leave a comment

Prehistoric Animals: A series of illustrations by David Roland

I bought this set of postcards when I was a kid in the 1970s. I can’t remember exactly where I bought them, but it was probably Manchester Museum. They were produced by scientific illustrator David Roland for Birmingham Museum and Art … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Dinosaurs, Fossils, Geology, SciArt, Science, Zoology | Tagged , | 3 Comments

The mis-appliance of science in cultural heritage?

Science applied to archaeology and cultural heritage is a thing. It has been happening for decades. Scientific analysis of materials can provide much needed information about materials, trade, manufacture, provenance, foodstuffs, populations, individuals. With today’s kit we can make analyses … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Artists' Pigments, Geology, Materiality, Minerals, Pigments, Science | Leave a comment

Portland Bone

There is a lot of Portland Stone in London, so much of it in fact that I almost blank it out. I am trying to change the way I think about it, partly thanks to Gill Hackman’s inspiring book “Stone … Continue reading

Posted in Building Stone, Fossils, London, Portland Stone, Urban Geology, Westminster | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

The Worst Stone ever used in the Metropolis: 150 years of Stone Decay in the Houses of Parliament

London’s House’s of Parliament are currently in dire need of restoration and repair. This iconic building is coming apart at the seams due to heavy usage, and quite frankly, inappropriate choice of building materials by men who should have know … Continue reading

Posted in Building Stone, Geology, Houses of Parliament, London | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment