Scale:1:10 000 – 1:50 000
Format:Free to view via online map viewer
The maps are free to view online via the BGS Offshore GeoIndexOffshore GeoIndex
User guides are available via the links in the map series in the table further down the page below.
BGS has initiated a new programme of mapping the seabed geology of the UK’s continental shelf, the first effort to consistently characterise the geology of the seabed in over 20 years. These new, fine-scale maps provide detailed and accurate characterisation of the seabed geology, integrating substrate geology, structural geology and seabed geomorphology.
The digital maps are intended as resources to support a diverse range of offshore activities and applications, including scientific research, offshore development, conservation initiatives and marine spatial planning and management.
The new mapping is based primarily on high-resolution bathymetry data produced by the UK Civil Hydrography Programme (CHP). Analysis and interpretation are further informed by secondary data and information resources, including:
- acoustic backscatter
- physical samples (for example grabs, cores and boreholes)
- seismic data
- academic and publicly accessible industry data and literature
- previous BGS mapping (onshore and offshore)
The CHP is administered by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), with technical oversight, data validation and onward charting undertaken by the UK Hydrographic Office (UKHO).
The new fine-scale BGS Seabed Geology mapping comprise three complimentary components (or layers):
- substrate geology: distribution of bedrock and superficial geological units interpreted to be dominant within the top 1 m below seabed
- structural geology: principal structural features such as faults and folds observed at rockhead
- seabed geomorphology: physical morphology and interpreted geomorphic character of the seabed
Further detail on the mapping process and dataset characteristics are described within individual dataset user guides.
Available fine-scale maps
The BGS Seabed Geology maps can be viewed under the BGS fine-scale maps drop-down menu within the Offshore Geoindex.
|Map||User guide||Further information|
|Anglesey||Available in NORA||Press release|
|Bristol Channel||N/A||Press release|
|Offshore Yorkshire||Available in NORA||Press release|
* Bedrock and structural geology only. The Dorset map was produced under the auspices of the Marine Environmental Mapping Programme (MAREMAP), in collaboration between BGS and the University of Southampton.
BGS has begun publishing a new series of high-resolution offshore geological maps showing the distribution of bedrock and sediments that make up the seabed around our coasts.
BGS is the latest UK Government organisation to join the newly unveiled UK Centre for Seabed Mapping, helping to boost marine data and mapping standards.
BGS has released the first high-resolution, offshore map in a new series featuring the seabed around the UK.