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Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences



The John Watson Building Stone Collection is a comprehensive collection of traditional building stones, roofing slates, road stones, flagstones and decorative and ornamental stones that were in extensive use throughout Britain and its colonies during the 19th and early 20th centuries. It is based on the collection of 300 British & foreign building stones, and specimens illustrating the manufacture of plasters and cements from their raw materials given to the Sedgwick Museum by Watson on his retirement from the Portland cement industry in 1905. Watson continued to develop the collection for the Museum up until his death in 1918, by which time the collection comprised approximately 2,500 well documented specimens, mostly covered by Watson’s published catalogues.

Thin sections cut from the building stones have been incorporated into the Petrology and other collections. The collection also includes a number of artificial building stones and cements.

Museum Opening Times

Monday - Friday: 10am - 5pm

Saturday: 10am - 4pm

Sunday: Closed

Admission Free

No booking required (except groups)