In a little place called Mere Brow, there is a farm that hosts a Giant Pumpkin Show. Check the website for an update of when the next show is. It was brilliant, id never seen so many people gather to watch giant pumpkins being weighed. They were huge! And even then they were saying they werent as big as previous years (due to all the rain the last couple of summers!) There were competitions and displays of extremely good pumpkin carvings too!
A 30-acre lake, 4'6" deep, sandy beaches, picnic park, "walks, landscaped touring caravan park with 90 pitches "available. Golf driving range, 9-hole golf course, jet-ski "centre, mountain bike, fishing and paintball. Western "themed pub on site, paintball games for groups (must be pre-booked).
Admission Adult £2.50
Admission Child £2.00
Admission Family £5.00
I found it a nice change from the hustle and bustle of the fair and the town. Nice to get away and very reasonable. Plus, a supermarket isn't too far away for the munchies
This grand Hall in Churchtown - Meols Hall - is the ancestral home of the Hesketh family. The present Hall was probably built during Elizabethan times but has been considerably altered over the years. Its privately owned and is only open to the public from 14th August to 14th September inclusive - admission £3 for adults
Its restored tithe barn is an exclusive location for weddings as well as television and photographic shoots, charity events, premiere and private parties, press launches, private screenings, conferences, lectures and discreet product launches.
The Botanical Gardens is also home to a small museum - free entry too. It was first opened by the famous showman Phileus T in 1876. The museum contains many fine collections of local interest including natural and local history, The Cecily Bate Collection of Dolls, and a Victorian Period Room.
Another popular place for a drink and a meal is the Hesketh Arms Pub - just near the village green. This was formerly known as the Black Bull and was converted into the pub from three fishermen’s cottages.
The Bold Arms Pub is a populat place for a drink in the village of Churchtown and has 6 guest beers to try out too! The stable area at the rear of the building was used to house the horses for the first horse-drawn trams before the Tram Sheds were built.
Indeed Churchtown is where Southport had its origins so a visit here is quite historical too. The earliest settlement comprised shrimpers’ and weavers’ cottages, in the ancient village of North Meols - because of St Cuthberts (the church) it became known as Churchtown. In 1798 William ‘Duke’ Sutton built the first public house - the Original Hotel, situated at South Hawes (meaning houses south of Churchtown) in a wide valley between the sandhills - this later became Lord Street. The hotel was built next to a bathing house constructed from shipwreck timber, which he built in 1792 for bathers from Churchtown, who used it during the summer months. Thus began the origins of this popular seaside resort.
The church of St Cuthberts is just by the village green in Churchtown. It was built in stone in 1571 and rebuilt in 1730-39 although very little of this now remains and the tower and spire were rebuilt in 1850. The church is believed to be built on the site of an earlier church, dating from pre-Conquest times.
Just by the church in St Cuthbert?s Road (adjacent to the church walls) are these old stocks - recently restored. The stocks were built by a John Linaker in 1741 and were last used in June 1861when they held a John Rimmer for drunkenness for 6 hours whilst he sobered up!
To the North of Southport is the ancient village of Churchtown - its mentioned in the Doomsday Book! This is a delightful village to visit with its thatched cottages, ancient church and antique shops. Plus the Botanic Gardens and country pubs here. Makes a really worthwhile detour from the hustle and bustle of the shops and pier of the main town of Southport.
Easily reached by regular buses from Lord Street - takes about 10 minutes to get here - bit too far to walk though.
The village of Churchtown is home to the Botanic Gardens - a pleasant oasis of colour and lovely place for a stroll. They were originally opened in November 1874 by the Southport and Churchtown Botanic Gardens Company, admission was then 4d (4 old pennies) but today its free!
The Botanic Gardens has a banqueting hall, restaurant/cafe, gardens, a lake with boat hire, childrens playground, aviary with exotic birds and its free to go in. You can also buy plants.
Its about a mile north of Southport on the A565, and is open Tuesdy - friday 11-3pm and Saturday and Sunday 2-5pm.
It is on Bankfield Lane, Churchtown.
Red squirrels have been on the decline in the UK since the more dominant grey squirrel was introduced from the USA. But Freshfield, near Formby in Lancashire has a colony of red squirrel which look very different from the grey squirrel having quite pointed ears with tufts of fur sticking out.
Its a beautiful place along wonderful coastline, with beaches, sand dunes, and a pine woods where you will see these red squirrels.
You will also see lots of different kinds of birds including, gulls, waders, kestrels, woodpeckers and treekeepers.
There is picnic sites, ice cream and drinks available, toilets.
Dogs are allowed but in the area where the squirrels are they must be on a lead.
The reserve is 6 miles south of Southport on the A565.
Victoria Road, Freshfield, Formby and is owned by the National Trust.
I remember that a lot of people parked on the road leading to the reserve but this is a residential road and I am sure the residents must get fed up of it. You can take your car in as there are car parks, parking is £3.10.
Entrance for adults is £2.80 and it is open every day except christmas day.
Martin Mere is a bird sanctuary with swans, ducks, geese and many other species. It is a conservation charity and was started in 1946. There are hides so you can quietly watch the birds.
There are exhibits, talks, a childrens play area, shop, licensed cafe and picnic tables.
Access for the disabled, also free wheelchair hire.
Martin Mere is situated in Burscough approx 8 miles from Southport. Take the A570 then the A59
November - February closes 5pm
Closed Christmas Day
Admission is £5.75 adults
Senior Citizens £4.75
If you have the time you could even visit Blackpool while you are in the area, just further up the coast. Maybe about an hour at the most in a car. Its approximately 35 miles, but because of the estuary you have to go by road on the A59 to Preston and then the A583 into Blackpool.
Here is a pic taken where you can see Blackpool Tower in the distance.