Wansunt Pit

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Wansunt Pit
Site of Special Scientific Interest
Wansunt Pit.JPG
Area of SearchGreater London
Grid referenceTQ514736
Area1.9 hectares
Location mapMagic Map

Wansunt Pit is a 1.9 hectare geological Site of Special Scientific Interest in Dartford Heath between Crayford in the London Borough of Bexley and Dartford in Kent. It is also a Geological Conservation Review site. It is important geologically because it exposes the Dartford Heath Gravel, and the relationship of this exposure to the Swanscombe sequence and the Thames Terraces is a controversial issue in Thames Pleistocene studies.[1][2] The site is part of Braeburn Park,[3] a nature reserve managed by the London Wildlife Trust.[4]


The site is also important archaeologically. Excavations going back over a hundred years have revealed stone tools of Homo Heidelbergensis, dating from Marine Isotopic Stage 11, equivalent to the geological Hoxnian Stage, an interglacial period between 424,000 and 374,000 years ago.[5] Other finds include sixteen Bronze Age axes and seventeen Iron Age gold armlets.[6]

The site[edit]

The site is divided into two units. The first is crossed by Galloway Drive and the second, which is inaccessible, is north west of Denton Road. Both are in an unfavourable condition.[7][8][9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Natural England, Wansunt Pit SSSI citation
  2. ^ "Wansunt Pit, Dartford Heath (Quaternary of the Thames)". Joint Nature Conservation Committee. Retrieved 16 January 2016.
  3. ^ London Wildlife Trust. "SINC Review". London Borough of Bexley. p. 116. Retrieved 18 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Braeburn Park". London Wildlife Trust. Retrieved 16 January 2016.
  5. ^ Juby, Caroline (2011) London before London: Reconstructing a Palaeolithic Landscape, Royal Holloway, University of London, Department of Geography, p. 94
  6. ^ Dartford Town Archive, Prehistoric Industry
  7. ^ "Map of Wansunt Pit SSSI". Natural England.
  8. ^ Natural England, Wansunt Pit Unit 1
  9. ^ Natural England, Wansunt Pit Unit 2

Further reading[edit]

Coordinates: 51°26′28″N 0°10′37″E / 51.441165°N 0.177015°E / 51.441165; 0.177015