Black Country Geopark

A Geopark is an area of significance that protects and promotes the geological and related industrial and cultural heritage for everyone to enjoy now and in the future. 


It links different heritage sites across an area to tell the story of the landscape and in the case of the Black Country, the significant part it played in the industrial revolution.

Heritage
It was here in the Black Country that nature laid down layers of characteristic rocks and fossils, allowing ingenious people to study this geology and extract the mineral wealth from the ground, using it to make inventions and discoveries that would change our understanding and modernise the whole world.

The Black Country has a large number of unique and heritage features and sites of interest ranging from the Wren’s Nest National Nature Reserve, to canal networks, caverns and structures, museums and art galleries, an 11th century castle, industrial structures and parklands and wildlife sites.

It is hoped that the above sites will form the Black Country UNESCO Global Geopark and will entice people from all over the world to explore these hidden gems.  This will not only boost the local economy but will provide a host of new opportunities for learning and inspiration.



2016 Developments

2016 is a big year for the Black Country as it bids to become an UNESCO Global Geopark to showcase its geology, culture and heritage internationally.

Graham Worton, project lead for the Black Country Global Geopark project and keeper of geology at Dudley Council, said: "This is a very exciting time for the Black Country; we have so many heritage sites and areas of huge significance, which we need to share with the world.  
"We are very enthusiastic about the future and hope we will become a Global Geopark, this will have a great impact on the areas we live in and put us on a par with other Geoparks worldwide.”  

Earlier this year, the four Black Country authorities (Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton) submitted the application to become part of the UNESCO network. During summer 2016 the area will receive a visit from UNESCO as part of the application process before a decision is made early 2017.

Discover more at www.blackcountrygeopark.org.uk