The De La Beche Club


Discover geology with the DLB. We run talks, an annual symposium and weekend excursions all over the UK …



One of the oldest and most active departmental societies at Imperial, promoting “social academia” and arousing your curiosity about all things geological since 1914. The De La Beche offers an insight into this fascinating subject in a relaxed setting. All undergrads, postgrads and lecturers are welcome.


As a departmental society, our main aim is to excite interest and offer you an insight into the fascinating world of geology. However, we Royal Miners are social beasts, and our laid-back events let you mingle with like-minded people from all years. This special mix makes the DLB a unique society, and part of the lifeblood of the RSM.


All Geology undergraduates are automatically members of DLB...

But don't fret Geophys and Materials... it is FREE to join!



The Royal School of Mines became a constituent college of Imperial College London in 1907, and the De La Beche Club, established in 1914, is one of the oldest clubs at Imperial. The club is named after the leading 19th Century geologist and founder of the Royal School of Mines, Sir Henry De La Beche. The DLB has remained right at the heart of the RSM ever since.


The De La Beche organises two or three evening talks a term. Lecturers or PhD students both from outside and within the department give fascinating and fun lectures about up-and-coming topics in geology or about their own current research. In the past year the talks have ranged from the history of plate tectonics to descending into the world’s largest lava lake, Mount Nyiragongo. The talks are followed by drinks and nibbles.


Fieldtrips are the best and most hotly anticipated events organised by the DLB. We have two weekend trips a year, in the Autumn and Spring terms. These are social excursions, with geology at their heart.


We load up a couple of minibuses with excited students and head off to places of great natural beauty all over the UK. 2018/2019 will see trips to North Yorkshire and Pembrokeshire, both sponsored by aggregate industries.


These trips are known for their relaxed attitude to geology, where we go at our own pace and give everyone the chance to check out some of the best geology across the UK. They are normally led by some of the world’s leading geologists from our own department, who show you some fascinating geology you may not encounter in the various fieldtrips run as part of the degree. A day in the field is followed by an evening meal for all and depending on the location, the local nightlife might be sampled!


On the Sunday, some more relaxed fieldwork is undertaken, followed by a carvery. The fieldtrips offer a great opportunity to mix with students from all year groups.


The annual symposium sees the De La Beche Club invite 6 top geologists from across the World to take part in what can only be described as a Geology gala.


Each year sees a different theme approached by well-renowned experts in the chosen field: 2018′s symposium, sponsored by BP, was entitled ‘Early Earth – The world of the Precambrian’. It included a talk from keynote speaker Professor Chris Hawkesworth, and was followed by an evening meal with students, speakers and lecturers in a local restaurant. 2017′s symposium was titled ‘Challenges and innovations in the natural resources sector’.


On top of the fantastic Geology each year, free refreshments, a free lunch and a free drinks reception are generously provided by the DLB club before the whole event is rounded off with a subsidised celebratory dinner. This year also saw the first De La Bake off, kindly judged by two of the external speakers.


© Copyright Royal School of Mines Union 2019