Underneath the patchwork landscape of the High Weald lie bands of sandstone and clay - originally laid down when dinosaurs roamed here over 130 million years ago.
The clay is soft and easily worn away creating a rolling landscape - the clay forming the low valleys of the High Weald and the harder sandstone forming the high ridges which run east-west.
Steep-sided, wooded gills have been created by streams carving deep channels through the area’s hillsides – they form the headwaters of 3 major rivers.
There are distinctive rock outcrops which protrude from the ground along the Forest Ridge.
There is a high density of extraction pits, quarries and ponds – a reflection of value of the High Weald’s natural resources to people over centuries.
The rocks, and the poor acidic soils arising from them, have strongly influenced the area’s vegetation, wildlife, agriculture, industry and buildings.