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Southport Reporter

Edition No. 85

Date:- 31 January 2003

 VIP Tickets.... Now the last question!

Last Week So Who will win?

Report by Julia Brough.
SOUTHPORT’S reputation as one of Europe’s premier birdwarching locations has been given a further boost with the launch of a one-year programme of events.

The packed programme will centre on the resorts recently restored pier and along the Southport and Sefton shoreline and a special publication has just been produced featuring a month-by-month schedule of the planned events.

Tourism and leisure services officers have joined forces with the English Nature Ribble Estuary National Nature Reserve and the RSPB at Marshside Nature Reserve to organise the ‘Birdwatching for All’ events and beach walks.

Lord Fearn, Sefton’s Cabinet Member of Economic Development and Tourism, said:-
“We want to take advantage of our location and encourage people to take an interest in the fascinating world of birds. We have one of the most important estuaries for wildfowl and waders in the country and these events will give people the opportunity to spot a huge variety of different birds.”

To date more than 300 bird species have been recorded along the Sefton coast and the RSPB Reserve is one of the most important places in the country for wintering wildfowl with over 40,000 birds on the reserve in the winter

Birdwatching is part of a major drive by Sefton Council to boost green tourism in the area. 
Sefton has the largest area of undeveloped dune systems in England covering duneland, farmland and pine woodland and the area is also internationally famous for its rare species of wildlife including Natterjack Toads, Sand Lizards and red squirrels.
Report by Julia Brough.
A programme of events to encourage ‘Birdwatching for All’ in Southport will feature special coastal walks this weekend.

On Saturday (February 1st) there will be a Marshside RSPB reserve walk and a visit to the hides at the reserve to view some of the thousands of wintering wildfowl that arrive in the area every year.

Then on Sunday there will be another introduction to birdwatching event with a Ribble Estuary walk along the sea wall and the edge of the English Nature Reserve.

Both walks are free, about three/four miles long and will give all members of the family the chance to identify the many different birds that gather along the Sefton coast. There will also be advice and information from Sefton Coast and Countryside rangers and RSPB and English Nature wardens.

Tourism officers and leisure services’ Coast and Countryside service have joined forces with the English Nature Ribble Estuary National Nature Reserve and the RSPB at Marshside Nature Reserve to organise a year-long series of ‘Birdwatching for All’ events on the pier and beach. This weekend sees the first walks.

Lord Fearn, Sefton’s Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Tourism, said:- “The events have been organised to take advantage of Southport’s reputation as one of Europe’s premier birdwatching locations and since they started last month many people have been encouraged to take up the hobby. These first walks this weekend are sure to be popular.”

Binoculars are available but anyone attending is advised to bring their own if possible. People joining the Saturday walk should meet at the RSPB car park at the junction of Marshside Road and Marine Drive, next to the sand works. On Sunday the meeting place is Crossens Way off Marine Drive near to the Plough pub and the Railex factory. Both walks start at 10am and finish at 1.30pm.

Southport Reporter is Trade Mark of Patrick Trollope.   Copyright © Patrick Trollope 2003.