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Where to Find Fossils, Lava, and Meteorites in London's Buildings

They’re everywhere, as a new map proves.
Algae and oyster shell fragments are visible at St Martins-in-the-Fields.
Algae and oyster shell fragments are visible at St Martins-in-the-Fields.London Pavement Geology

Look closely at London’s stone buildings and you’ll see the city is really a disaster site. The rock that much of England’s capital is built from is the residue of billion-year-old volcanic eruptions and tsunamis, of plants and animals flattened into gritty seams beneath layers of debris, and of earth warped by meteor falls. Now, an impressively detailed map (below) shows you exactly where to find the evidence of this turbulent prehistory.

The London Pavement Geology project is a loving catalog of the many different types of rock to be found across the city. To be released as an app later this summer, it doesn’t just reveal the geological variety of the city’s building materials. In tracking down the seam of rick running through the U.K. capital, it also reflect key shifts in the city’s history.