Folding and faulting, Saundersfoot

Pembrokeshire, SW Wales

Saundersfoot is one of the most well-known outcrops in the UK and an important site for training future geoscientists. Carboniferous rocks of the South Wales Lower Coal Measures were folded and faulted here during the Variscan Orogeny.

 

Inspect the outcrop and examine the interaction between faults and folds. The detailed virtual outcrops below show a section close to Saundersfoot where a small-scale fold has been decapitated and transported onto another. This relationship implies that folding here occurred before thrusting. This relationship is not clear everywhere: different parts of the outcrop show different deformation histories. In short, deformation here was complex. There does not appear to be any systematic relationship between the timing of folding and faulting.  

Compare the complex deformation structures here to Amroth, just a few miles to the north, where units of a similar age and depositional setting are relatively undeformed.

 

 Lat: 51°42'27.6"N Long: 4°41'44.0"W

 

Virtual outcrop generated using Agisoft Photoscan from 372 photographs acquired by Yuki Totake with a Nikon D3200.