P Golding

Introduction to Crystals

Location: Tyland Barn, Sandling, Maidstone, Kent, ME14 3BD
Learn how modern science explains the formation and structure of crystals

Event details

Meeting point

Training Room at Tyland Barn


10:30am - 4:30pm
A static map of Introduction to Crystals

About the event

Our day will be divided into four sessions.  We will begin by looking at how people viewed crystals in classical times.  During the 17th and 18th centuries a modern understanding began to emerge.  Studies by Steno, Hooke and Hauy laid the foundations of the modern science.  Development of the polarizing microscope in the early 19th century allowed the accurate identification of crystals in rocks.  By the early 20th century X-ray techniques for crystal determination became available. 

For the second session we will discover how atoms combine together to create the various crystal shapes that we see.  You will have an opportunity to study their internal and external form including a practical investigation of a gypsum crystal.

After lunch we will look at crystal symmetry and explore the seven crystal systems.  Then we shall explore how crystals grow and why sometimes the same mineral exhibits different crystal forms.

The last session will explain how crystals interact with light and how such interactions can be used to identify minerals in rocks.

There will be various practical sessions throughout the day.

Suitable for beginners and improvers.


Led by Peter Golding


Phone number

01622 662012


Standard fee: £35 per person per day.
Concessionary fee: Kent Wildlife Trust volunteers, senior citizens, unemployed and students £5 off.

Additional booking information

This course does not include anything about crystal healing.

Suitable for


Know before you go


Guide dogs only


Classroom based. Disabled access to the barn and nature park (with its short nature trail) is very good.

Wheelchair access

Wheelchair accessible.

What to bring

A hand lens, if you have one and a memory stick if you would like a copy of the presentations. Please bring a drink and packed lunch (in case the visitor centre is closed).

Parking information

There is free parking available.


Picnic area
Disabled toilet
Baby changing facilities

Contact us

Jill Evington
Contact number: 01622 662012