• Local GAPs

Slide Show


Herefordshire & Worcestershire is a particularly special area of the country as so many geological periods are represented. The story of geological time is written in the landscape from the ancient rocks of the Malvern Hills (700 million years old) to the ‘recent’ glacial and river deposits in the valleys of the rivers Avon, Severn and Wye. The explore series of building stones and geology & landscape trail guides presents these geological stories to visitors who enjoy the countryside and would like to know a little more.

The Trust’s Explore series of trail guides now has 26 publications. These attractive laminated guides have been given sparkling reviews by their peers and have been well received by the public. They look at building stones, landscape and geology of locations within Herefordshire & Worcestershire. Written in a friendly manner, they can be understood by anyone with an interest in geology. There are text boxes for those who would like to delve a little deeper into the subject. Some also include an interesting free biodiversity and/or archaeology insert. Many of these trails, such as those based on the two cathedrals and city centres and town centres, can be followed at a gentle pace whereas others are better suited to more experienced walkers and may require stout footwear. For some a map is suggested. You can even follow a trail from the comfort of a Severn Valley Railway carriage and the Malvern Hills trail has cyclists in mind.

Details regarding parking, refreshments, availability of toilets, maps and any special recommendations or requirements are given with each guide. Many of the guides also include a free insert telling the stories of plants and animals plus local history and architecture and how they all can be seen on the trail.

A booklet published by the Trust about the Explore Trail Guide series is available for download, it includes a map with the locations of all the trails.  To request a free copy of the booklet about the guides, or to purchase individual guides (£1.95 each) contact eht@worc.ac.uk. Selected trails are available from the locations themselves where appropriate, and local Tourist Information Centres. They are listed by Book Data and may be ordered through any high street bookseller.

To view descriptions of each Explore trail guide please click here.

Book a Guided Trail

We now have 26 trails and printed guides available over the two counties. Some have become so popular with groups that we have decided to offer a programme of guided walks.

For the next twelve months there are seven walking trails that are available to be booked within this project. They are Abberley Hill and Churches, Worcester Cathedral, Severn Valley Railway, Midsummer Hill and Raggedstone Hill in the Malverns, the Geopark Way, Kington and Whitman’s Hill Quarry.

There is a fee of £3 per person with a minimum charge of £25. The fee includes a copy, if available, of the full colour information guide for the trail for each person. Group numbers are restricted to a maximum of 25 people.

Just to whet your appetite:

  • On the Abberley trail after an invigorating walk over the Hill there is afternoon tea in the Manor Arms in the centre of this lovely village
  • Spectacular scenery and some of the oldest rock in England await you on the Malvern Hills trails
  • In Worcester cathedral beautifully carved stones from around the world sit alongside the local building stones that make up the structure of the cathedral. The added bonus is that this trail is not affected by the weather!
  • The Kington trail is a pleasant walk through wonderful scenery alongside the River Arrow
  • The Geopark Way is an 80 mile walking trail with fabulous geology and scenery but we have chosen a special small section for this guided trail
  • The Severn Valley Railway offers some excellent geology from the comfort of a railway carriage. A walk from one of the stations takes you to the old mines and quarries with their fascinating geological history.

For more information contact the Geological Records Centre. Remember walking is a great way to keep fit.