Latest News


Henry Emeleus

It is with great sadness that VMSG report the recent passing (11th November) of Dr Henry Emeleus, Emeritus Professor at Department of Earth Sciences, Durham University.

Henry Emeleus was widely acknowledged as a leading expert on the formation of igneous rocks in North West Britain and Greenland. His outstanding talent and energy as a field geologist, and intuitive ability to discern relationships between and within rocks, resulted in the production of numerous geological maps for major international organisations, and an output including over 100 published papers, three BGS maps of NW Scotland, together with a further 7 published map sheets for the Geological Survey of Greenland, and later of Denmark.

His early research centred on the Western Mournes and Slieve Gullion. Later, for the Geological Survey of Greenland, he worked on Precambrian intrusions of southern Greenland and the Palaeocene lavas of East Greenland. His more recent research has concentrated on the Tertiary geology of Britain's north and west.

In 2016 The Geological Society of London honoured his achievement by awarding him the Prestwich Medal - this Medal is awarded every three years to persons 'who shall have done well for the advancement of the science of geology'. This accolade justly recognised his 60 years in the service of the geological community, teaching generations of undergraduate students, undertaking pioneering fieldwork and research, and producing many maps and memoirs of Scottish and Greenland geology. Henry was a great proponent of fieldwork, and argued powerfully and eloquently in its support - a view point he emphasised in his medal acceptance speech: 'Field work may be expensive, but to those who criticise it on those grounds I would simply say that it is an essential component of a balanced degree course and thoroughly cost effective'.

Henry mentored many undergraduate and postgraduate students throughout his six decades at Durham, many of whom went on to be scientific leaders in their own right. But he will also be remembered by all the students and colleagues who encountered him as a kind, decent and modest man who was always willing to offer the benefit of his considerable geological knowledge and experience to anyone who asked. Henry successfully supervised 18 PhD students and continued to participate actively in national and international research until very recently.

Over the years Henry was a regular attendee, and often contributor of research, at the annual VMSG meeting. He will be missed by one and all that knew him.

Dr Mike Widdowson (Chair, VMSG)

Please see Henry's Citation for the Prestwich Medal.

A more detailed outline of Henry's many qualities and scientific contributions may be found at the following site:


Leeds VMSG 2018

We are happy to announce that registration is now open for the 2018 Volcano and Magmatic Studies Group Meeting in Leeds (3rd - 5th January).

We would like to encourage submissions from all branches of volcanology and especially from research students.

We have designed sessions to promote a broad and engaging programme. Please select a category from: "Volcanic Arcs", "Rifts, Islands and Intraplate Volcanism", "Beyond the Vent" or "Explosive Ideas!" that best represents your research. We are aiming to organise our oral and poster programme so that every session covers a range of science topics and methods to encourage exciting discussion. We will also be running post-conference training workshops on Saturday 6th January.

Abstract submission, venue and programme details are on our new website: Leeds VMSG 2018

All updates will be announced on twitter, so please follow: @VMSGLeeds18

Early, discounted registration is open until 31/10/2017, and registration closes on 1/12/2017.

Please register HERE

We look forward to welcoming you to Leeds City Museum in January!


Fieldtrip to Mull

VMSG is pleased to announce that we will be offering a fieldtrip to the Isle of Mull this September. Visit the mini page for more information.

Places are on a first come, first serve basis, so be sure to be quick!


Fermor Meeting 2017

Fermor 2017, one of the Geological Society's flagship meetings, is being organised by the Mineral Deposits and Volcanic and Magmatic Studies Groups of the Geological Society of London. In 2017 the topic will be "Factory Earth -- Volcanic and magmatic processes as drivers for natural resource formation".

The meeting will be held at Burlington House 25 - 27th September 2017. With an ice breaker on the evening of the 25th, followed by two days for talks with an evening reception and posters on 26th at the Natural History Museum (Earth Galleries).

More information can be found at

The abstract deadline is 1st July 2017. Abstract templates and registration are available online from the Geological Society.


Willy Aspinall Prize

The Willy Aspinall Prize, which may be made annually to the lead author of an outstanding paper on applied volcanology published (in English) within three years of the lead author being awarded a PhD at a university in the UK.

The Prize is named in honour of Professor Willy Aspinall who is a distinguished professor at the University of Bristol and a hazard and risk science consultant. His main research interests are in volcano geophysics, monitoring of volcanoes, early warning, volcanic hazards and risk assessment.

Nominations should consist of a letter of nomination together with at least one letter of support along with a copy of the paper being nominated and a copy of the nominee's CV (2 pages maximum and including a list of publications). Each nomination package should be submitted in electronic form (a single pdf file) and sent to the VMSG Secretary (

The deadline for receipt of nominations is 16th June 2017. More information can be downloaded here. 10/05/2017

Trans-Iapetus Meeting

The Trans-Iapetus Meeting will be a 2 day meeting on the 25th - 26th May at the University of Hull.

This meeting broadly follows on from the Highland Workshiop series and is focussed on the formation and destruction of the Iapetus Ocean. Contributions are welcome from geochronology, geochemistry, palaeontology, palaeomagnetism, geodynamic modelling, and anything else Iapetus related. The meeting will be followed by a fieldtrip to Angelsey, North Wales to discuss some new perspectives on these exciting rocks!

Registration and other information can be found here: