Earthquake hits Selly Oak | Redbrick | University of Birmingham

Earthquake hits Selly Oak

Deputy Editor Kirstie Sutherland reports on a magnitude 4.4 earthquake which has affected parts of the West Midlands, including UoB's main campus.

A small earthquake has hit parts of the West Midlands this afternoon, including parts of University of Birmingham's (UoB's) Edgbaston campus.

At around 2:30pm on Saturday 17th February, there were several reports of shaking across South Wales, Southwest England and parts of the Midlands. It has since been confirmed this was due to a 4.4 magnitude earthquake across a large area of the UK. The epicentre of the earthquake was located approximately 20km north of the Welsh city of Swansea, at a depth of 7.4km. The British Geological Survey (BGS) confirmed that it was ‘the largest earthquake in mainland UK’ since a 5.2 magnitude quake hit the parish town of Market Raven, Lincolnshire in 2008. The BGS also added that earthquakes of this nature tend to occur in the UK every 3-5 years, so this was not a totally unexpected event.

It has since been confirmed this was due to a 4.4 magnitude earthquake

The tremors could be felt within Birmingham and the surrounding areas, with several students noting its effects in both Selly Oak and on certain areas of campus. Third year English Literature student Luke Charnley felt the effects in the Main Library building, albeit on a minor scale. 'All I really noticed was the bookshelves in the library rattling for about ten seconds but I didn’t think anything of it until I looked at the news (well, Fab and Fresh). I kinda just put it down to one of the library’s many design flaws.’ However, other parts of campus, such as the Medical School and University train station, were seemingly unaffected.

All I really noticed was the bookshelves in the library rattling

The earthquake was met with a lot of confusion by students in and around Selly Oak, with many not realising what had caused their houses to shake for roughly ten seconds. Several took to the Fab N Fresh Facebook group like Luke, with some attempting to work out the source; others made jokes the earthquake had been the real cause of the old library building’s demolition, using the hashtag #SeismicSelly.

Deputy editor of Redbrick. Final year English Lit and Spanish student. I like music, coffee and bad jokes. (@whatkirstiedid)



Published

17th February 2018 at 6:22 pm



Images from

Nigel Mykura



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