Day 190 Southport and Formby

Monday 12 October 2015

Warton, Lancashire to Hightown, Sefton

16 miles

Kathrine’s house

It was very cold last night and I didn’t manage much sleep. My sleeping bag was damp and the tent was soaked. I was keen to get out of the horrible campsite so I was away as quickly as possible and caught a bus into Preston to avoid walking the main road. I didn’t see much of Preston but I did make my way out of the bus station and into a shopping precinct to get a coffee in between buses.  

Looking back across The Ribble towards Warton at low tide
 I had decided I would not bother walking the mixture of roads and paths along the River Ribble as it didn’t look that exciting and I wanted to reach Hightown. So I caught a bus to Crossens, the first town in the borough of Sefton. I had reached Merseyside.  

Blackpool across The Ribble
 I walked around the corner of the River Ribble, so I could look back across at Blackpool, and then I was on Marine Drive, the coast road to Southport. The road must be built on sand because it’s quite bumpy. The sky was getting very dark and it looked rain but fortunately I escaped and the wind blew the cloud inland before it dumped its contents on someone else.   

Southport over the marsh
  The Marshside RSPB Nature Reserve is situated on the corner between the Ribble and the Irish Sea, and there were several birders out today.
Southport’s grand-looking buildings
 Southport is set back from the sea and its buildings look quite grand from a distance; a contrast to the funfairs and garishness of the sea front.  

Funfair and a large promenade on the sea front
 I walked past Southport on the promenade and then diverted onto a footpath through the dunes. The sun came out and I had a lovely, peaceful walk hidden from everything except the sound of the sea.  

Lost in the dunes
 After about an hour I popped out onto the beach and walked the rest of the way to Formby along the beach. The sand is beautifully fine (which makes it hard to walk) and the dunes are big; it reminded me of Aberdeen’s beach.  

A long sandy beach
 I reached Formby and diverted off the beach here in the hope of seeing a red squirrel in the reserve. It wasn’t my lucky day but the Asparagus Walk through the Jubilee Wood pine trees was lovely nonetheless. This part of Formby used to have big asparagus farms.  

Jimmy Lowe – 1930s asparagus farmer
 I used to play hockey here in Formby and I had forgotten just what a lovely town it is. It really is a gem on this coastline.  

Jubilee Woods, Formby
 The coast path diverted inland alongside the railway line in order to skirt around the Altcar Army Range. I arrived at Hightown and Kathrine met me. Tina Cullen came round for tea and I had a great evening catching up with old friends, 17 years after I left the hockey club here.  


One thought on “Day 190 Southport and Formby

  1. chris frazer October 17, 2015 / 2:32 pm

    Keep going Juice…not much to see or enjoy between Preston and North Wales except the people you know of course……..On on to Rhyl and Prestatyn….

    Altcar Ranges… of joys…..spent many a week there!!!!!!


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