This is William Smith. He was born in 1769 in the small village of Churchill in Oxfordshire. He was interested in collecting fossils and worked as a surveyor. These interests saw him develop new ideas about stratigraphy, the layers of rock which make up the earth.
His great achievement was the creation of the first geological map of England, Wales and parts of Scotland. Smith’s map was published just over 200 years ago in 1815. Smith is today rightly remembered as the Father of English Geology.
In 2020 we had on display a copy of that map in a touring exhibition called Colours Beneath Your Feet exhibition.
This animation was created for the exhibition. It shows Smith collecting geological information to create his wonderful map.