I UNFORTUNATELY LOST MY MOBILE PHONE ON SOUTHPORT'S SANDS THIS MORNING. HUGE THANKS GO TO LESLIE FOR FINDING IT AND ENSURING IT WAS RETURNED TO ME.
Southport Marshside, a large RSPB reserve, is accessible from Marine Drive, the coastal road to the North of Southport. There is some limited access for dogs but check the maps posted on boards in the area and obviously make sure your dog is under control if he/she has a tendency to chase birds!
Our favourite walk round here starts from the car park next to the Sand Works. It would be hard to describe it as a dog friendly beach walk but it does lead out to the sands and is a good walk for clearing the cobwebs! From the car park you can see the "road" leading from the sand works way out onto the sandbanks off Southport. On some days you'll see the huge dumper truck and excavator making their way to and from a far off point where the excavations take place. I wouldn't recommend attempting to follow them to their final destination but you can walk to the edge of the sands quite safely and the whole route gives your dog the chance to have a good, if wet and muddy, run round. The tide comes in quickly around here so be careful or you could easily become stranded. You should also keep to the marked track to avoid dangerous soft sand.
The "road" leads out past coastal grassland and pools. Assuming your dog hasn't scared them all off, you can expect to see thousands of wintering waterfowl from September to May. Breeding birds include avocets, lapwings and redshanks (April to July).
Click here for a Google map / image
Click here for information on the RSPB reserve
Doggy rating 5/10