Thanks to funding from Natural England’s NIA (Nature Improvement Area) initiative, it has been possible to give a major face-lift to the Rubery Cutting which lies to the north of the Lickey Hills. The Birmingham & Black Country Nature Improvement Area is a partnership of many organisations, led by the Birmingham and Black Country Wildlife Trust. The Rubery Cutting/Leach Green Lane Quarry was cleared and designated as a LNR (Local Nature Reserve) by Birmingham City Council in 1991, mainly because it shows a contact between the Silurian Llandovery Sandstone lying unconformably on the Ordovician Lickey Quartzite. At first the site was visited regularly by students and geological societies, but over the years it had become neglected and overgrown.
The Rubery Cutting lies beyond the boundaries of the Lickey Hills Geo-Champions’ original designated area, but its geology ties in closely with the Lickey Quartzite of the Barnt Green Road and Warren Lane quarries. We are pleased to be able to extend our range of activity to include this important geological site, under the direction of the Lickey Hills Ranger Service.
Contractors took care of the heavy-duty clearance earlier in the year, and a volunteer geoconservation clearance session was arranged by Senior Ranger, Steve Hinton and the Lickey Hills Geo-Champions for litter-picking and cleaning up the rock face. Lickey Hills Geo-Champions along with members of the Black Country Geological Society and other volunteers met Steve at the site on Sunday 28th April for a hard day’s work, as you can see from the photos. We were pleased with the result, but further sessions will be needed to reveal the geological features more clearly, and to make sure that we prevent the site from reverting again to the sorry state shown in the pre-clearance photo!