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Skinningrove fossils and fossil collecting

Skinningrove is a new town council housing estate, It can be found from the A174 just past 'Loftu'. There are two access roads from both sides of the rider along the A174, clearly signposted, and both of these roads take you to the seafront.
There is a large car park at the end of the road, park here an then walk over the road bridge crossing the river.
The area is that on the eastern side of Skinningrove, the north-western cliffs are covered under the 'Saltburn section'.

GRID REF: 54.57150°N, 0.89612°W

Bivalves, trace fossils, brachiopods
Fossil Collecting at Skinningrove

This new town may not be the most prettiest in Cleveland, but is an ideal location for anyone interested in trace fossils. Fossil ripple marks and worm tubes are quite frequent. Bivalves are also very common. There is a large number of rocks along the beach, making walking difficult.
Where is it



Skinningrove is not the best location for finding fossils, the rocks are extremly hard. Mostly trace fossils and bivalves can be found here.

Not for Children

The rocky beach can be too dangerious for children and the cliffs are very tall. It is hard at some places not to walk beside the base of the cliff as the sea doesn't go out very far.

Poor Access


Finding the location is easy, but the walk along the beach is difficult. Especially the further east you go.

Cliffs, Foreshore


Most fossils can be found in the boulders and rocks on the foreshore. You may need a hammer to get these out.

No Restrictions


There are no restrictions at this location, you are free to collect fossils and hammer the rocks.


Common sense when collecting at all locations should be taken and knowledge of tide times should always be noted. The tide can easily cut you off at Skinningrove so please double check tide times. The cliffs are also very tall and can fall at any time, please keep away from the base of the cliff. Take care when passing over the large boulders as these can be found all over the forshore making walking difficult.

Tide Times



UK Tidal data is owned by Crown Copyright, and therefore sadly we are not allowed to display tide times without paying expensive annual contracts. However we sell them via our store, including FREE POSTAGE
Click here to buy a tide table

Last updated:  2008
last visited:  2007
Written by:  Alister and Alison Cruickshanks

T OOLS: A good strong hammer is required and chisel. googles and suitable footwear should be used. The rocks here can be very hard, it may be a good idea to sharpen hammers before any visit to Skinningrove.

Location Photos

Fossil Collecting
Your Reports

The best place to find fossils is by looking at the rocks along the foreshore. The most common find at Skinningrove is trace fossils. Ripple marks can be found all over the foreshore along with worm tubes.

Blocks full of bivalves can also be seen, although these are very hard. We recommend photographing at this location rather than collecting since the fossils are often too difficult to get out of the rocks, and are also quite fragile.

Cleveland Ironstone Formation at Skinningrove

Geology Guide Jurassic, 190mya

The cliffs at Skinningrove are of the Cleveland Ironstone Formation, which is from the lower lias of Pliensbachian age. These are around 190 million years old and are extremly hard. This is why the beach is full of large boulders...[more]

Brachiopod and fossil tree bark
Fossil ripple marks from Skinningrove

Other Locations similar to Skinningrove

If you enjoyed collecting at Skinningrove, nearby Saltburn is also similar in geology. Other locations in Yorkshrie such as 'Robin Hoods Bay', and 'Staithes' are also very similar in geology.

For a completly different type of location, further up the coast at Durham, Seaton Sluice has carboniferious plants.

More Guides

Stone Tumblers
Test Sieves for Microfossils

If you are interested in fossil collecting, then you may also be interested in a stone tumbler (Lapidary). You can polish stones and rocks from the beach which will look fantastic polished using a stone tumbler.

You can polish rough rock and beach glass whilst collecting fossils, on those days where you come back empty handed. These are all high quality machines to give a professional finish to your samples. They can even be used for amber and fossils.

At most locations, you can find microfossils. You only need a small sample of the sand. You then need to wash it in water and sieve using a test sieve. Once the sand is processed, you can then view the contents using a microscope.

We have a wide range of microscopes for sale, you will need a Stereomicroscope for viewing microfossils. The best one we sell is the IMXZ, but a basic microscope will be fine. Once you have found microfossils, you will need to store these microfossils.

Test Sieves are used when searching for microfossils. Microfossils can be found in many locations, and all you need is a small amount of sample such as clays, sands and shales, or if you have acid, limestone, oolite or chalk.

Our UKGE Store sells Endecotts Test Sieves, which are the highest in accuracy and extremely durable and long lasting. These Test Sieves are fantastic for microfossils. Endecotts Test Sieves come in a variety of sizes, frame material and types, they are certificated to EU Standards.

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(C)opyright 2008 - UKGE Limited, UK Fossils Network and Deposits Magazine, all rights reserved.
While we (UKGE/UK Fossils) try to ensure that the content of this location guide is accurate and up to date, we cannot and do not guarantee this. Nor can we be held liable for any loss or injury caused by or to a person visiting this site. Remember: this is only a location guide and the responsibility remains with the person or persons making the visit for their own personal safety and the safety of their possessions. That is, any visit to this location is of a personal nature and has not been arranged or directly suggested by UK Fossils. In addition, we recommend visitors get their own personal insurance cover. Please also remember to check tide times and rights of way (where relevant), and to behave in a responsible and safe manner at all times (for example, by keeping away from cliff faces and mud).
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