The Riches Beneath Us, which proved a hit when it was on show at Bantock House Museum earlier this year, reveals the Black Country’s amazing geological legacy.
It features around 100 artefacts which give a glimpse into the region’s landscape millions of years ago, when it was a tropical forest or shallow coral reef – including fossils which have been collected from the Black Country’s collieries and limestone mines.
A highlight is the 315 million year old “Coseley Spider” – an internationally important example of the species Eophrynus Prestvicii discovered locally which shows the early evolution of spiders – as well as a fossilised fern leaf which fell from a prehistoric tree more than 300 million years ago and a 165 million year old tooth from one of the Jurassic world’s most vicious predators, the pliosaur.
They come from a collection of thousands of geological items stored at Wolverhampton Art Gallery, most of which were donated to the city in 1911 by local geologist Dr John Fraser.
The Riches Beneath Us is on show at Wolverhampton Archives and Local Studies’ Molineux Hotel Building, Whitmore Hill, from Tuesday (15 December, 2015) until Thursday 4 February, 2016.