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Grid Reference: TQ971492

charing1Charing Chalk Pit is designated as a RIGS because it provides a key link between Middle Chalk RIGS in the Medway Valley (such as Bores Hole) and those on the Kent coast. It is the only remaining inland exposure of this important interval in this area of Kent. The site also has good educational potential.

Charing Chalk Pit is an active site situated to the northwest of Ashford near the village of Charing. It provides a section through the upper part of the Middle Chalk.

The red circle shows Professor Andy Gale to give scale to the photograph of the chalk pit.

charing2In the lower part of the quarry flintless nodular chalk with poorly developed marl seams and characteristic fossils is exposed. Above these wispy marls, flints appear and then, near the top of the accessible section, an excellent development of marl 10cms thick is seen. This is the Southerham Marl. Such marl bands and some flints (e.g. the Southerham Flint that lays 50cms below the marl) are used for correlation of chalk sequences throughout the Anglo-Paris basin.

Charing Chalk Pit was surveyed for designation as a RIGS in August 2005

Access And Safety

The site is an active quarry and all visits have to be properly controlled. Contact John Bourne & Co. Ltd. well in advance to make the necessary arrangements. Visitors will need to be properly inducted (advised of the potential hazards) and properly equipped (with boots, helmets, high-visibility clothing etc.). Access is relatively easy as road is adjacent but there is little parking whilst quarry operating. The quarry faces are vertical and hence there is the risk of falling debris, it is uneven under foot and large vehicular traffic and machinery are operating.

Photographs were taken by Dr. David Wray


RIGS in Kent


(Regionally Important Geological Sites) 

RIGS are geological sites that are important for historical, scientific research or educational reasons.

Important information about visiting RIGS >>

SSSI’s in Kent 

sssi(Sites of Special Scientific Interest) 

SSSIs give legal protection to the best sites for wildlife and geology in England. 

Important information about visiting SSSI's >>