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Shrewley Cutting SSSI

Shrewley Cutting is a designated Site of Scientific Interest (SSSI) on the Grand Union Canal in Warwickshire.

Shrewley Cutting
Shrewley rock formations

If you visit the village of Shrewley the canal is just a short walk through the horse tunnel. Once through the tunnel you'll be surronded by historic rock formations. Its these rock formations that forms the SSSI and we're working to protect these precious formations.

Using specialist contractors we will be removing overgrown vegetation and shrubs from the rock face. This is the protect the rock from any further damage from root balls and prevent further growth of plants. The work will also expose the rock so you can clearly see the layers of the rock formations.

Rock formations

The rock wall in this cutting is an important scientific resource. It shows a layer of buff or pale green sandstone sandwiched between two layers of predominantly red mudstone. The middle of this sandwich is called Arden Sandstone. The three layers tells us a story about environmental changes in the area 230 million years ago.

  • Mudstones have finely-grained particles which suggest calm water, deep seas or windblown dust settling on damp surfaces.
  • Rusty red colours mean the formation was exposed to the atmosphere, allowing iron in the rock to oxidise.
  • Sandstones are made of relatively coarse-grained particles left by rivers or shallow seas. Ripples in the formation indicate strong waves or currents.

Last Edited: 19 January 2023

photo of a location on the canals
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