Tuesday, 28 July 2009

“We do love to be beside the seaside”.

With the fickle minded summer we have been having, today seemed to be the best day for a trip to the seaside according to the long range weather forecast. We only had to walk across the road from the dock to catch a bus to Southport.

One hour and twenty minutes later we were heading down to the beach and the pier. We did a detour into the Model Railway which for those of you who know, it was similar to Bekonscot Model Village and railway at Beaconsfield in Buckinghamshire. This village was not a patch on Bekonscot but what there was of it was realistic enough. The railway was running continental outline Garden Railway stock and we were also given a quiz upon entry in which we had to find things, more for the kid’s really. The winner get’s a £20 W H Smith voucher.

IMG_0507 Southports Model Village and Railway.

From there it was off down the pier which I believe is about a mile long and the second longest in the UK. When we reached the end there was still no sign of the sea as it was low tide and the tide goes out for about 3 miles at this point. Being a fine but cold and blustery day we could see Blackpool Tower and the BHP Billiton Petroleum gas drilling platform in Liverpool Bay. We took shelter in one of the huts/shelters on the pier and had our picnic lunch that we had taken with us.

IMG_0515 Southport Pier tram disappearing into the distance.

After wandering along Lord St which is the main road through the town we spotted Holy Trinity Church which has a very distinct bell tower. We were very lucky as the church is only open between 2pm and 3.30pm and there is always somebody in attendance. We were told that the church was made with Lancashire sandstone which doesn’t do too well in the salty air atmosphere and the tower was paid for by the Elder family (shipping magnate from Manchester) and it cost the princely sum of £1250  when built around 1900. The town of Southport was expanded by the cotton traders of Manchester as an exclusive housing development for themselves and has of course grown over the years.

IMG_0517 Holy Trinity church Southport. The tower cost £1254 to build in 1900.

In the centre of town is probably one of the biggest cenotaph and war memorials that we have seen outside of London. With the cenotaph in the middle of the roadway and a memorial archway on either side of the road it would have taken up the size of a soccer pitch.

IMG_0520 Looking from one memorial arch to the other with the cenotaph in the centre. Southport.

Another interesting place we found was the Wayfarers Arcade which is a grade 2 listed building which has recently renovated. It was originally opened in 1898 as the Leyland arcade after a parliamentarian and took 8 years to build, it was truly like walking back through time as the whole place still has that Victorian look and feel about it.

IMG_0524 Wayfarers Arcade Southport. Grade 2 listed building built 1898.

Another attractive building which had been and still is a bank building but a different company now. The entrance foyer was lined in ceramic tiles and above the main banking chamber was a stain glass roof, truly awesome.


Anonymous said...

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Derek and Dot said...

Hi Patricia
Glad you are enjoying it. Thanks for the comment/