Clay ball from Ringstead Bay: Pebble-studded clay ball from Ringstead Bay, Dorset, UK - part of the Jurassic Coast. 

A naturally-occurring pebble-studded ball of Kimmeridge Clay. It was found rolling around on the water’s edge at Ringstead Bay in Dorset. I like the shape of this beachcombed object. It’s quite decorative. The pattern of the bright orange and lighter-coloured stones looks attractive against the blue-grey clay.

The main body of the clay outcrops high on the seashore and has a very glutinous texture when wet. Sometimes pieces of this clay crack off in dry conditions or may be loosened by wave action. When wet, these lumps of clay stick to anything they come into contact with.

The seashore at this point is mostly flint shingle with smaller pebbles and finer gravel at low tide level. The strong currents and crashing waves have moved the clay around until it has become this interesting rounded shape and texture. It has acquired the pebble coating in much the same way that a soft sweet acquires its finish of “hundreds and thousands”.

Revision of a post first published 23 June 2009

COPYRIGHT JESSICA WINDER 2011

All Rights Reserved

3 Replies to “An odd ball from Ringstead Bay”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: