Demonstrating the potential of an annually-laminated lake record to evaluate landscape response to climate and anthropogenic forcing during the Holoce

Lead Research Organisation: Royal Holloway University of London
Department Name: Geography


Our understanding of Holocene climatic complexity is compounded by the interactions between humans and environment, and a lack of high-resolution chronologies for proxy records of landscape response and human activity. Improvements in dating are sought to facilitate the integration of responses in proxy records to stressors.
Lake sediments constitute valuable records of landscape sensitivity, documenting the complex interplay between climate change, human activity, and landscape evolution. The site of Diss Mere (Norfolk, UK), offers a unique opportunity to improve our understanding of Holocene Britain owing to the high chronological resolution of its annually-laminated sediments and high sedimentation rates.
This PhD is built around two key approaches. Firstly, cryptotephra analyses of the highly resolved Diss Mere record, which act as precise, stratigraphic isochrones, tying the sediments to calendar time. The well-dated, Diss record, thus, provides an ideal testing ground for palaeoclimatic, palaeoenvironmental, and archaeological studies. To achieve this, the second key approach uses high-resolution palynological data, combined with existing proxy data. This is applied to key time slices, along a gradient of human activity, from the Mesolithic to the Roman period, coinciding with rapid climatic transitions: the 8.2ka BP event, the 2.8 ka BP event, and the Roman warm period.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
NE/S007229/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2027
2067157 Studentship NE/S007229/1 01/10/2018 30/03/2024 Amy Walsh
NE/W502947/1 01/04/2021 31/03/2022
2067157 Studentship NE/W502947/1 01/10/2018 30/03/2024 Amy Walsh