About us

Welcome to the Old as the Hills forum.

In order to post messages, you will need to register. Registration is free. Discussion is now in several sections, including a free fossil identification service on one board. It is open to all levels of experience, and we hope to get a good mix of occasional fossilers, amateurs and professionals.

The topic we encourage most, obviously, is the palaeontology of the Builth Inlier. This can be anything from news of recent discoveries, and discussions about fossils that people have found or sites they have looked at, to a place to put photos of your finds to get help with identification.

Of course, this grades imperceptibly into the Ordovician fossils of Wales – one might even call it the same ‘species’ – and anything of a similar age from Wales or the borders (Shropshire, Herefordshire, etc.) is equally welcome. Then, of course, there is enormous interest in the Cambrian and Silurian rocks of the area as well, and the Devonian fish faunas, and the Carboniferous, and in fact discussions about any vaguely relevant fossils from anywhere…

It’s starting to get a bit broad now, so we’ll have to draw a tentative guideline somewhere. So here it is -

we're really not all that interested in dinosaurs.

Guidance (important!):

1. This is not an appropriate place for Creationism. We've seen it all before and we're not interested. Posts along the lines of 'Evilution is wrong!!!' will be removed.

2. A major problem for the conservation of palaeontological sites is the activity of unscrupulous commercial collectors. In some cases, dedicated dealers can strip an entire outcrop of what they think they can sell, and destroy everything else. It is a sad fact that some important Builth localities have already suffered greatly, and the specimens have been lost into the Internet.

As a result, we are forced to be cautious over the detailed description of important and sensitive sites. Some are very fragile indeed, and could be destroyed in a day. This is not a case of keeping them secret; for example, we are happy to share our own knowledge with genuinely interested people. But we do need to avoid giving precise directions to the most fragile of sites, and posting them where anyone can see. With most, it is not a problem, but the location of some (e.g. the 'Howey Cliff') should be kept vague in open discussions. We reserve the right to step in if necessary.

3. This is a moderated forum. It's also going to be frequented by people of all ages and sensibilities, so please watch your language. It goes without saying that abuse and threatening messages will not be tolerated, but generally we'll interfere in the role of 'mods' as little as possible.

4. Finally, we want to encourage you to go and look for things yourselves. There are, as with everything, good ways to do it, and bad ways. If you've been inspired to take your hammer to some poor innocent rocks, please make sure you read the section entitled 'A beginner's guide to fossilologizing'. Really. It's for your own benefit, and that of anyone following after you. We are not responsible for anyone who does not follow this basic code of conduct (or anyone else, for that matter).

Above all though, have fun - and help us to build a community dedicated to the development and sharing of knowledge and the magic of discovery.

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