I’m lucky to live not to far from the Lancashire coast and it’s resorts. One of the nearest and a particular favourite is Southport and one of its many attractions is the pier.
The pier dates from the 1860’s and its original length of 3,600 feet was increase with an extension which boosted it to around 4380 feet, it also had a steamer service operating from the end of it for a time. Over time fires and storm damage have brought the piers length down to today’s approximately 3600 feet, making it the UK’s second longest pier after Southends. The pier appears to start well inland, from its forecourt on the promenade, before crossing the Marine Lake and Marine Road before reaching the actual beach and heading off seawards. This is due to the Marine Lake once being the shore line before land reclamation took place, The Marine Lake and it’s gardens date from the 1880’s. It can be a bracing experience walking to the end of the pier, especially in the winter months but fear not, Southport is well provided with very good cafes and there is one at the end of the pier. That is another reason I like going over to Southport, watching the progression of the seasons through the years and I’ve always had a liking for that slightly sleepy feeling you get in an out of season resort.
When you see how popular the pier is, especially at the weekends when the landward end of the pier is a favourite rendezvous point for the biker community. The fish & chip shop might have a lot to do with that.
This sculpture stands at the seaward end of the pier and from here you can see across the Irish Sea and watch the drama of the sea and skyscapes unfold. If you look to the right from here the famous resort town of Blackpool is easily visible, especially the Tower and the Pepsi Max Roller Coaster at the Pleasure Beach. Occasionally I like to fancy a favourable breeze carries the sound of the screams from the Pepsi Max’s riders across the water. So if you’ve never been give Southport a try, if you walk down the pier you might see someone stood watching the sea and the skies go by, it might be me.