The Shingle Beach at Hightown

362 The mouth of the River Al;t352 Hightown shingle beach

The sun is shinning and it is still a bit windy, but what a change from yesterday when we were hit by the tail end of Hurricane Bertha.

The tide is way out leaving vast a vast expanse of sand. It almost seems as though you could walk out to the wind farm the other side of the Crosby Channel. What better time to have a stroll along the shingle beach.

The shingle beach is found along a 2km stretch of shoreline between Hall Road, Blundellsands and Hightown. It is not a sandy beach but is formed from water-worn house bricks and other rubble that has eroded from the coast-protection embankment. The rubble embankment was tipped from about 1942 using debris from the Liverpool bomb-damage. Further tipping continued until the early 1970’s using spoil from the construction of the second Mersey Tunnel.

Over the years vegetation has colonised sections of the beach especially in the northern area. So what did I find?

Many of the plants that can survive this harsh environment such as Curled Dock, Sea Kale and Sea Beet were not very photogenic but one flowering plant that caught my eye was Sea Mayweed, Tripleurospermum maritimum.

354 Sea Mayweed

It is a member of the daisy and dandelion family and is almost always confined to the coast as it is able to tolerate salt. The flowers are 30 –45mm across and the leaves are fine and feathery.

There was also some Portland Spurge and some yellow flowers that I think may be Mouse-ear hawkweed,

375353 Portland Spurge376

One or two clumps of Japanese Rose, Rosa rugosa, were surviving amongst the rubble although there are large clumps of it growing further inland. The bright scarlet hips added a splash of colour.

361 Japanese Rose Hips360 Japanese Rose

On the edge of the dunes there were some Sea Holly. The flowers were just opening and proving to be a favourite with the bees.

378 Bee on Sea Holly

I believe there are some Yellow Horned Poppy in the area but I have not seen any. It must be worth another visit.


About crosbyman66

My aim is to create a photo diary of my walks and my travels. I have two main hobbies, walking and photography and these complement each other. I am a senior citizen, what used to be called an old age pensioner, but I don't feel old. Since retirement I have had more time to pursue my hobbies and the opportunity to travel more. My philosophy now is - Do what you can, while you can. My other interests are fine wines and keeping fit. These may not complement each other but keep me happy.
This entry was posted in Natural History, Photography, Sefton Coastline, Wild Flowers. Bookmark the permalink.

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