A brief introduction to the geology of Cornwall

The peninsula of Cornwall has a geological character distinct from that of the rest of the United Kingdom. It represents the eroded basement of a Palaeozoic Mountain Belt formed by the Variscan Orogeny. Although rocks affected by the same collision occur in South Wales and the Mendips region, it is only in Cornwall that we see the S-type granites so indicative of mountain building processes. This area is known geologically as the Cornubian Massif (Cornubia being the Latin name for Cornwall).

For anyone who wants to know more about the geology of the area visit


Cornwall in all its rocky glory are featured in a Geological photo project that was started in 2009 as a small body of work that escalated in a major undertaking of the Geology of Cornwall and the West Country. I started photographing the project on a 5×4 large format camera and a 35mm film camera using Ilford HP5 B&W 200 but slowly I have moved to digital, mainly through the expense of using film but also I was finding it hard work carrying all the equipment to out of the way places.




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