Landscapes of the UK OCR Geography A


Landscapes of the UK (OCR Geography A)

 1.1.1 Physical landscapes of the UK have distinctive characteristics

Lowland - relatively flat areas under 200m in height
Upland - areas defined by hilly terain just above 200m
Glaciated - landscapes that have been sculpted during glacial periods by ice
Physical - natural processes shaping our planet

Distribution of lowlands, uplands, and glaciated areas

  • Upland areas are found north west of the Tees-Exes line, an imaginary south-west line linking the mouth of River Tees with the mouth of River Exe. The upland areas include the Pennines, Lake District, Exmoor, and Dartmoor. Scotland is the most mountainous country in the UK. Wales is quite mountainous and Northern Ireland is quite hilly.
  • Lowland areas are found south and east of the Tees-Exes line and England consists of mostly lowland terrain. They are found in central and southern England with the most extensive found in East Anglia.
  • Glaciated areas are found particularly in northern and western areas.

Characteristics of lowlands, uplands, and glaciated areas, including geology, climate, and human uses

  • Upland areas have older harder rocks like igneous and metamorphic rocks and sandstone in Precambrian and Palaeozoic eras. They have a wet climate due to continental and maritime winds. Summers are warm, winters mild, and there is light rain. Limestone is a permeable rock and it is dissolved by rainfall, chemical weathering. If carboniferous limestone is capped by impermeable rock, surface streams can run onto limestone and this water disappears by seeping through joints or through swallow holes. Water is responsible for many of the upland features. They are used for farming - sheep grazing and dairy cattle. Farming has affected the type of vegetation that grows, depth and health of the soil, drainage patterns, ability to travel through the area, and the nature of the surface itself. It is also used for quarrying, recreation, and tourism.Mountains are made when magma cools either beneath or above the surface. They are windier than lowlands.
  • Lowland areas have flat lying or gently tilted or folded sedimentary rocks or chalk. They have a warmer climate compared to uplands or glaciated areas due to tropical winds. There are mild winters and is heavy rain. Ancient glaciers created plains and rolling landscapes and deposited fertile material from highland areas. Ice has moved into lowland areas scraping away soil and bulldozing clay and boulders into large ridges or leaving piles of rock differing from local geology. There are many settlements in the lowlands but towns displace wildlife and vegetation, transforming landscapes. Rocks are impermeable and resistant. Farming is done here, which boosts economy and employment, but vegetation and wildlife are displaced. Tourism is common but the environment could be damaged.They have been drained to improve usability of farmland, creating fertile soil.
  • Glaciated areas have a wet climate and it is very cold due to Arctic and maritime winds. Summers are cool, winters are mild, and there's heavy rain all year. Glacier ice melts and water freezes into cracks in rocks and pulls


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