Lion Pit

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Lion Pit
Site of Special Scientific Interest
Lion Pit 8.jpg
Area of Search Essex
Grid reference TQ 598781
Interest Geological
Area 2.5 hectares
Notification 1986
Location map Magic Map

Lion Pit is a 2.5 hectare geological Site of Special Scientific Interest in Grays in Essex.[1][2] It is a Geological Conservation Review site,[3] and part of the Chafford Gorges Nature Park, which is managed by the Essex Wildlife Trust.[4][5]

The site is part of a nineteenth-century tramway cutting to carry chalk to riverside wharves. Evidence has been found of flint-knapping using the Levallois technique by Neanderthals 200,000 years ago, and it has even been possible to fit back together some of the flint flakes. Fossils have been found of mammals including, rhinoceros, bison, mammoth and straight-tusked elephant.[5]

A public footpath goes through the site from Weymouth Drive to London Road.[5]


  1. ^ "Lion Pit citation" (PDF). Sites of Special Scientific Interest. Natural England. Retrieved 3 August 2016. 
  2. ^ "Map of Lion Pit". Sites of Special Scientific Interest. Natural England. Retrieved 3 August 2016. 
  3. ^ "Lion Pit Tramway Cutting (West Thurrock) (Quaternary of the Thames)". Joint Nature Conservation Committee. Retrieved 3 August 2016. 
  4. ^ "Chafford Gorges Nature Park". Essex Wildlife Trust. Retrieved 3 August 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c "Lion Pit Tramway Cutting SSSI". Essex Field Club. Retrieved 3 August 2016. 

Coordinates: 51°28′50″N 0°18′04″E / 51.4806°N 0.301°E / 51.4806; 0.301

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