Swanage Bay is a sandy bay facing east and protected from the major southwesterly storms. In the southern part there are low cliffs and banks of Upper Purbeck limestone and shale, largely built over.To the north, as shown here as it was in about 1890 , there are excellent cliff sections of Wealden strata. These are the cliffs of soft yellowish and brownish sands and clay with a notable Coarse Quartz Grit. Lignite, plant debris, is common and dinosaur remains are found occasionally in these Cretaceous fluvial sediments. At Punfield Cove, at the northern end of this section there are exposures of Lower Greensand (once regarded as a special unit - the Punfield Formation) with some unusual faunas. Gault and Upper Greensand follow. Beyond this where the Purbeck Hills reach the sea is the major Chalk exposure of Ballard Cliff, beneath Ballard Down. Here the Lower Chalk is cyclical and quite fossiliferous.