Skip navigation

You are in:  Home » Staff and students » Della Murton

Della Murton BSc (Hons) MSc PGCE

DKM photo

Cambridge Quaternary
Department of Geography
University of Cambridge
Downing Place
Cambridge CB2 3EN

Della is a Quaternary scientist with research interests in reconstructing palaeoenvironmental change and establishing land-sea correlations from glaciolacustrine and aeolian sediments


British–Irish Ice Sheet during the Devensian Stage in the Vale of York



Current understanding of dynamics of the British–Irish Ice Sheet (BIIS) in eastern England during the Devensian Stage is that ice lobes in the Vale of York and North Sea Basin were asynchronous. New sedimentological and geochemical data from four cores through the basin fill in the central part of the Vale of York, together with six, three-dimensional geological models developed from 3050 core logs of superficial deposits in the region, have provided critical new insights into the terrestrial response in central eastern England to climate forcing during the Devensian Stage. A new, high-resolution age model, determined from sediment colour, optically-stimulated luminescence dating and magnetic properties indicates that the basin-fill sediments were deposited from 41.00 to 15.80 ka. Glacial Lake Humber was initiated in the Vale of York at ~40.00 ka from meltwater flowing eastwards from an ice lobe situated in the eastern Pennines. Variations in sediment redness (a* reflectance and 570–560 nm) and end-member modelling have enabled glacially- and periglacially-derived inputs into Lake Humber to be differentiated. Between 38.20 and 33.00 ka, the dominant processes were periglacial, indicated by variations in the a* reflectance records that were broadly synchronous with the Dansgaard-Oeschger cycles recognised in the Greenland ice-core 18O records. End-member modelling has demonstrated that Ca/Sr records provide a proxy for incursions of the North Sea Basin ice lobe of the BIS onto Holderness. These records indicate that this ice lobe first advanced westwards to Holderness at 33.00 ka, with three significant readvances at 22.51, 21.36 and 20.80 ka. In the Vale of York, ice extended no further south than the Escrick moraine ridge, attaining its maximum extent between 23.50 and 21.60 ka. The dynamics of the eastern sector of the BIIS between 41.00 to 15.80 ka were strongly coupled with movements of the North Atlantic Polar Front.




Conference abstracts


Membership of learned societies

Undergraduate teaching and demonstrating

External activities

Outreach activities and public engagement