An earthquake hit the village of Newdigate near Dorking this morning according to the British Geological Survey (BGS).

The BGS revealed Thursday morning (February 14) that a seismic event measuring 2.4 ML (Local Magnitude) occurred near Newdigate, Surrey, at 07.44.

Residents living near to the epicentre reported houses and other nearby buildings shaking during the early morning, and data released by the BGS confirmed that seismic activity was the cause.

The quake followed in the wake of several smaller earthquakes which struck the area in 2018.

Announcing today's earthquake, the BGS tweeted a statement: "SEISMIC ALERT: NEWDIGATE, SURREY 14 FEBRUARY 2019 07:43 UTC. 2.4 ML This event locates in the same region as previous ones that occurred in 2018..."

The organization later confirmed the event on the the earthquakes section of their website and included some of the initial reports they had received.

BGS said: "The BGS have received several reports, mainly from the RH5 & RH6 postcode areas, Surrey and a few from Crawley, West Sussex, of this event being felt. Typical reports described 'furniture shook very gently', 'everything moved forwards then backwards', 'a loud bang and strong impact and shake as though something had fallen on the house' and 'general rumble that lasted for a couple of seconds'."

Speaking to the Surrey Comet, the BGS Seismic Network Manager David Hawthorn explained why the earthquake had happened in Newdigate. 

Mr Hawthorn said: "Tectonic plates are creating this complex, mixed up geology underneath us which is full of old faults (cracks in the Earth's crust), and over a long time those faults end up where we are now. You're right on a fault line there, the Newdigate faultline..."

"In the UK, we might not be on one of those tectonic plate margins...and we tend to think of the ground underneath us as the solid, uniform thing but it's actually folded and faulted and buried and pushed back up again and heated and cooled, so it's full of potential zones of weakness like this fault that can allow tensions to build up."

Meanwhile, seismologist Dr Stephen Hicks of Imperial College London, who works with the BGS and monitors their seismographs, offered analysis via Twitter describing the pattern of earthquakes near Newdigate as a "seismic swarm" or "sequence". 

He added that today's quake was recorded "with the same location and depth as last year's events," suggesting that the phenomena were related.