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Possible ice-rafted erratics in late Early to early Middle Pleistocene shallow marine and coastal deposits in northeast Norfolk, UK

By Nigel R. Larkin, Jonathan R. Lee and E. Rodger Connell

Abstract

Erratic clasts with a mass of up to 15 kg are described from preglacial shallow marine and coastal deposits (Wroxham Crag Formation) in northeast Norfolk. Detailed examination of their petrology has enabled them to be provenanced to northern Britain and southern Norway. Their clustered occurrence in coastal sediments in Norfolk is believed to be the product of ice-rafting from glacier incursions into the North Sea from eastern Scotland and southern Norway, and their subsequent grounding and melting within coastal areas of what is now north Norfolk. The precise timing of these restricted glaciations is difficult to determine. However, the relationship of the erratics to the biostratigraphic record and the first major expansion of ice into the North Sea suggest these events occurred during at least one glaciation between the late Early Pleistocene and early Middle Pleistocene (c. 1.1–0.6 Ma). In contrast to the late Middle (Anglian) and Late Pleistocene (Last Glacial Maximum) glaciations, where the North Sea was largely devoid of extensive marine conditions, the presence of far-travelled ice-rafted materials implies that earlier cold stage sea-levels were considerably higher.\ud \u

Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.pgeola.2011.01.009
OAI identifier: oai:nora.nerc.ac.uk:14695

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