The seafront between Granny's Bay - where Clifton Drive meets the Inner Promenade at the White Church - the whole way along the seafront to where North Promenade rejoins Clifton Drive at the sand dunes near Blackpool - is one great big area where you can enjoy the great outdoors and beautiful coastline.
You'll find Fairhaven Lake just past Granny's Bay (below) heading north along Inner Promenade.
Fairhaven Lake, Lytham St Annes. Map: Google
At Granny's Bay there's plenty of free on-street parking on the seafront, or if you prefer, there's a pay and display car park where you turn off the main road of Inner Promenade, leading to the footpath which takes you around the back of Fairhaven Lake.
Enjoy a few hours or a full day with the coast on one side and a beautiful green park on the other. There’s a little take-away shop at the entrance to the car park where you can get an ice cream or hot drink.
It’s a lovely walk on the footpath around the seaward edge of Fairhaven Lake.
There are occassional events held in the car park here. This is a previous Classic Car Show (below). Photo: James Brookes
Looking back towards Church Scar from the footpath on the seaward side of Fairhaven Lake (below) you can just see the tower of the White Church in the distance.
The further you walk around the lake footpath the quieter it gets, so if you like peace and quiet and a fabulous view, then this is the place for you.
The Irish Sea and Ribble estuary meet on one side, providing clear views across the bay to Southport (below) and north Wales beyond, and of course you'll see spectacular west coast sunsets and evening sunshine all throughout the year.
Fairhaven Lake is a man-made lake, designed by the Landscape Architect Thomas Hayton Mawson and built in the 1890s.
It was called Ashton Marine Park until the 1960’s because Lord Ashton bought it and presented it to the Lytham St Annes Corporation.
The Cafe was originally built as the Club House for Fairhaven Golf Club, predating all the other buildings in the area (they retreated inland after a huge flood in 1896).
Another fascinating fact is that Regattas were held on the lake from 1900, with the last one in 1972 when the Borough of Lytham St Annes was formed.
At only just over 1m deep at its deepest point, it’s a managed space and well maintained. It's a haven for wildlife and somewhere for the migrant birds to shelter from the worst of the especially rough prevailing weather and a year round home to ducks and swans.
The RSPB Discovery Centre and adjoining cafe are the buildings right against the edge of Fairhaven Lake.
RSPB Discovery Centre
Fairhaven Lake Cafe
This is also where you pick up your pleasure craft!
Just behind these buildings you’ll find a children’s playground and a Crazy Golf Course – both next to the Bowling Greens with the Lake carrying on behind.
Facilities for the energetic carry on as you head in the direction of St Annes, with well equipped tennis courts and then further along the skate park.
By now you’ve just about reached the northern end of Fairhaven Lake as it snakes around the back of the public facilities, and you come to the site of the new Spitfire Memorial (you can read about the Spitfire Memorial here) and the picnic area that’s enjoyed by many.
Here, you’re at St Paul’s Avenue, which is also where you’ll find more Pay and Display parking.
Blackpool & Fylde Model Boat Club meet at the North West end of the Lake, adjacent to St.Pauls Avenue Car Park. They meet from April to October, weather permitting, with sailing sessions on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings from 6pm until dusk.
Ribble Cruising Club - hold Try Sailing events on Fairhaven Lake. Why don't you give it a go?
Enjoy our armchair guide to Fairhaven Lake, or better still why don’t you pick a fine and sunny day and go out and explore for yourself!
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