Explore Lytham seafront, where the freshwater of the River Ribble estuary marshlands meet the saltwater of the Irish Sea at Lytham Green.
Have a look at this Google map. These photos were taken roughly where the pin is on the map.
In the photo below we’re looking towards the Irish Sea.
Lytham Green was formed out of the uneven dunes and marsh lands of the shorefront. Beyond the footpath, ornamental railings and the area controlled by man, you’ll see the age-old natural landscape.
The Green runs along the full length of the waterfront and provides an open space for special events like the Lytham Proms. All through the year it’s somewhere for people to enjoy the great outdoors. You’ll see people walking here all through the year, sitting on the grass in summer, picnicking, playing games and enjoying the day.
East Beach is separated from the waterfront by Lytham Green – a wide stretch of open grassland. Period architecture and the sympathetic new-build properties here make a very attractive backdrop to the main highway.
Lytham Windmill on Lytham Seafront
This is where you’ll find the famous Lytham Windmill, standing tall on the edge of the shore.
What’s on Lytham Green
There are public car parks on the Green which are handy both for seafront walks and for visiting the town centre. Clifton Street, the main high street, lies parallel to East Beach and is only a short walk from the Green.
There is a block of Danfo public toilets adjacent to the Windmill. These are single cubicles and they take a 20p coin.
Lytham RNLI lifeboat station is also on the Green. Why don’t you pop into the shop and see if any of their fabulous range of fundraising gifts takes your fancy? There’s a much bigger RNLI all weather base at St Annes.
Spectacular Views from Lytham Seafront
You’ll see amazing views from the edge of The Green which stretch right across the estuary of the River Ribble to north Wales.
The pin is in the same place on the Google map below. Southport (bottom left-ish corner) can easily be seen, as one of the built up areas across the river.
Lytham sits on the turn of the coastline, where the estuary of the River Ribble opens out to sea. It’s also a very flat beach and as a consequence there’s a big tidal range, with the waters retreating a long way with each low tide.
Wildlife on Lytham Seafront
The strip of marshy grassland against the hard landscaping of the promenade is rarely covered by the tides. It’s an important natural sea defence and margin of safety for high water in bad weather.
Retreating tides leave sediment behind that provides the most magnificent feast for seabirds and waders which come to feed here. Refreshed by the sea twice a day, it’s laden with invertebrates that form a rich diet for resident birds. Thousands of migratory birds use it as a stop off point on their huge journeys.
National Nature Reserve
This is a perfect habitat for species which inhabit marshlands, and over half of the whole Ribble Estuary is a National Nature Reserve.
The Ribble Estuary is the most important site in the UK for wintering wildfowl, the extensive mud and sand flats make it one of the largest saltmarsh habitats in the country. It supports over 250,000 ducks, geese, swans and wading birds. It’s internationally important for 16 species of wintering birds. The best times to see all this is in the autumn and winter months.
Help the birds
Sea birds running along the water’s edge might look cute but they are trying to conserve vital energy and warmth while the tide is in and their feeding grounds are covered by water. Please don’t disturb them or let your dog run at them – they will just waste energy by flying away. That strength is difficult to replace when feeding grounds are covered and they can’t eat.
In summer, the landscape is still active, when birds are nesting on the saltmarshes. Around the Ribble Nature Reserve you might be lucky enough to see three types of gull, common tern and redshank, skylark, meadow pipit and linnet, nesting on land which is managed by Natural England. Regions of saltmarsh are grazed by sheep and cattle in spring and summer to maintain the short grass on which wintering wildfowl rely. Look hard enough and you may see these birds nesting on the marshes at Lytham.
If you’re interested in the birdlife in the area, why not call in at the RSPB Ribble Discovery Centre, situated on the edge of Fairhaven Lake.
Fairhaven and Ansdell
East Beach parts away from the seafront for a short distance as you head towards St Annes and it turns into Clifton Drive. Your next landmark is the White Church on the corner of Ansdell Road.
At the White Church cross roads, turn left to follow the main coastal road. This is Granny’s Bay (below) with Fairhaven Lake ahead. For walkers, a footpath runs along the water’s edge from Lytham Green to Granny’s Bay. It’s a pleasant stroll against the edge of the sea, watching the wading birds on the sands.
The area of Fairhaven sits between Lytham and St Annes, and Fairhaven Lake is a popular attraction for people and wildlife alike.
At Fairhaven Lake you can hire a rowing boat and mess about on the water, have a bite to eat at the lakeside cafe, or simply walk the next footpath around the back of the lake.
Find out more about these areas in our Visit St Annes website.
Find out More
Have a look at the Visit Lytham website homepage for more of the latest updates.
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