Stories of the people, the place and the areas surrounding Formby. Formby is a coastal town with a beautiful beach, fabulous sand dunes, pine woods, red squirrels all managed by the National Trust. The town boasts an attractive village shopping centre where there's much to see, eat and drink. Because of its popularity, parking close to the beach is limited, often full and large queues form by noon at weekends and bank holidays.
Strictly speaking this is not about using the railway. Normally most of us will think of the railway as a man-made barrier between the coastal side of Formby and the land facing into rural West Lancashire, but there are beautiful tree lined avenues either side the railway.
I for one, nowadays, use them to travel into the village centre and back home again. Neither of the routes is truly car friendly and only provide access for residents. Instead they are very agreeable walking or cycling routes. They are peaceful almost rural and predominantly unpaved, it's easy to imagine Formby in an earlier pre-tarmacadam age, when roads and lanes would have been narrow bumpy tracks.
My preferred route to the village is by way of joining College Avenue at Freshfield Station. This is mostly unpaved throughout and can get muddy after heavy rain. Then I walk my cycle across the Timms Wicks Lane footbridge, cross over Freshfield Road and take Rosemary Lane into the village. Fortified with a Cafe Latte and by convivial conversations in Chapel lane I rejoin Timms Wicks Lane before taking a turn along Barkfield Avenue. Once more onto Freshfield Road before wending my way home.
The photographs show the Timms Wicks Lane (See the comment below) footbridge engulfed in trees, views towards Formby and Freshfield Stations, Barkfield Avenue looking south and looking north.
If you like to travel traffic free and in an ecologically friendly way I cannot recommend these Avenues more highly, walking or cycling they are hidden treasures in the heart of the town. Have you got any similar walking or cycling routes you'd like to share, please write and let me know.