Recording, conserving and promoting the landscape and rocks of the Sheffield region

Sheffield Area Geology Trust

The Sheffield Area Geology Trust (SAGT) was formed in September 2008, and incorporated the South Yorkshire RIGS (Regionally Important Geological Sites) Group (SYRG) and the Sheffield Building Stones Group. These groups were established in 1991 and 1999 respectively and covered the district Local Authority areas within South Yorkshire, including the area within the Peak District National Park.

SAGT's logo depicts a Lepidodendron, a lycopod plant which grew to the height of 30 metres or more during Carboniferous times (300 million years ago). The fossilised stump of one of these plants can be seen in the Evolution Garden in the Sheffield Botanical Gardens.
Lepidodendron drawing © R.Alison Hunter


  • to increase the knowledge and understanding of Earth sciences, geology, geomorphology, landscape and heritage by promoting study, research, education and conservation.
  • to promote all aspects of geodiversity and geological conservation in the UK, in particular in and around the Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield City Region of England.


Many of the original records of geological or geomorphological sites date back to between the 1930s and 1970s when the original surveying work was done. During the 1990s, working together with Sheffield City Museum for the Sheffield City Council area, the SYRG helped identify many RIGS sites. This was followed by baseline RIGS surveys in the Metropolitan Boroughs (MB) of Barnsley in 1996, Rotherham in 1996-1997, followed by RIGS survey work funded by Doncaster MB Council in 1997. Doncaster MBC funded a full RIGS re-assessment in 2007.

SAGT now manages the four geological records centres that cover Barnsley MB, Doncaster and MB, Rotherham MB and the City of Sheffield, and has been developing a digital database, that now supports the work of these four geological record centres. The updating of details such as changed site conditions and ownership, revised stratigraphy, photographic recording and assessment of new threats is supplemented by site visits.


SAGT is regularly consulted by Local Authority planning teams in South Yorkshire regarding the potential impacts of development on designated local geological sites, and also on the subject of geo-conservation in general. SAGT has prepared a short guidance document for planners and developers which describes the importance and value of geological features, why they should be conserved whenever possible, and also offers suggestions for the best means of doing so.

Download pdf SAGT Geo-conservation Guide


SAGT promotes occasional events for the education of the public regarding their local geological heritage, both in the natural and built environments.