Wednesday, 13 November 2013

THE WYRE ESTUARY



The River Wyre cuts through a coastal plain known as The Fylde, meandering towards Morecambe Bay, where at its mouth Knott End-on-Sea and Fleetwood gaze across at each other.  Knott End-on-Sea is a quiet little place with a big wide beach of sand and mud.  In summer it is linked to Fleetwood by a ferry service.  Walkers can set off along the eastern shore of the estuary on the Wyre Way, which leads the long way round to Fleetwood.  The path leads south to an area of salt marsh with two nature reserves: Barnaby's Sands and Burrows Marsh. 

Moving round to the west shore, Skippool Creek attracts birds such as lapwings, ducks and herons, while humans use its moorings and jetties for sailing.  Skippool was a port way back in the 16th century, serving Poulton-le-Fylde, just inland.  Incredibly, the port was allegedly doing more trade than Liverpool by the mid-18th century, with a range of imports including guano from Africa, which was used as fertiliser for the farms in the Fylde.  Further up the west shore at Stanah is the Wyre Estuary Country Park with the Wyreside Ecology Centre giving information on the estuary's wildlife, which includes golden plovers, redshanks and oystercatchers, along with many other birds on the mudflats and sandbanks.  The Wyre Way leads from here to the southern end of Fleetwood, of which more in the next blog post. 

Map of the area. 

File:The Knott End to Fleetwood Ferry - geograph.org.uk - 1401572.jpg
Photo by Dr Neil Clifton, via Wikimedia Commons
 

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