Stan Wood found and recovered from the Manse Burn excavation a previously unknown metre long fossil shark which was identified as the complete skeleton of a member of the Stethacanthidae family of prehistoric sharks.
Known as the Bearsden Shark, this fossil is regarded as the most complete skeleton of its kind ever found.
Stan was an enthusiastic amateur palaeontologist and fossil dealer who had success in finding fossils even before taking up a temporary post with The Hunterian at the University of Glasgow. He excavated several sites and recovered many fine fossil samples from, among many sites, Bathgate in West Lothian, Cowdenbeath in Fife, Langholm in Dumfriesshire, and, more recently at Chirnside in Berwickshire, but the discovery of the Bearsden Shark established his reputation worldwide. There are many papers and articles which are based on, or make reference to the Bearsden discoveries.
Mr Wood's Fossil Shop was opened by Stan in Edinburgh in 1987 and it is still open under the proprietorship of Matt Dale. Matt commissioned the palaeontologist artist Bob Nicholls to paint the Bearsden Shark as reproduced below.