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#EnglishTourismWeek19

English Tourism Week highlights the value of one of the biggest industries in England. Outside of London the North West is the biggest region of tourism spend in England.

To celebrate it we have put together some facts you may (or may not!) know about Southport.

 

Sefton is home to Aintree Racecourse, which hosts the world-famous Randox Health Grand National which starts on 4th April 2019. #TheWorldIsWatching

Red Rum, the only triple winner of the Aintree Grand National, was trained on Southport Beach by ex taxi driver Donald ‘Ginger’ McCain. Ginger was granted Freedom of the borough of Sefton in June, 2004.

Southport has 9 million visitors each year which brings over £550m to the economy and generates nearly 7,000 jobs related to tourism alone!

Southport Pier is currently undergoing a £3m renovation which will include improved access and an even better pavilion with miles of coastal views - can it get better than that?

Churchtown, on the outskirts of Southport, was mentioned as far back as the Domesday Book, which was commissioned by William the Conqueror in 1086.

There are six championship golf courses, including Royal Birkdale home to The Open, within twenty minutes drive of Southport town centre - so that’s 72 holes and over 40,000 yards of championship golf - Pretty impressive we say!

Southport is also famous for its Pier which is the oldest surviving iron pier in the UK and is also the second longest - and what a beautiful sight it is.

There are 22 miles of beaches, sand dunes and Pinewoods along Sefton’s Natural Coast, including one of the UK’s few remaining colonies of red squirrels at Formby Pine Woods.

The Sefton coastline is also the home to the Antony Gormley's 'Another Place'  - 100 cast-iron, life-size figures spread along Crosby Beach. Residents and visitors  have been know to dress them up and take ‘selfies’ - if you walk along you will often see an Everton or Liverpool shirt!

Frank Hampson, creator and artist of Dan Dare, lived in Southport along with other famous 'Sandgrounders' actress Miranda Richardson, singer Marc Almond ‏, Masterchef judge Marcus Wareing and golfer Tommy Fleetwood.

In 1926 Sir Henry Seagrave set a new land speed record of 152.3mph on Southport’s Beach in his four-litre Sunbeam, which he named ‘Ladybird’.

Four-and-a-half million litres of water are pumped through Southport’s Splash World water park every hour to service the high-speed slides and rapids rides.

The young, exiled Louis Napoleon lived on Southport’s Lord Street before he rose to power as Napoleon III. According to legend he loved the wide boulevard so much he ordered his architect, Georges Eugène Haussmann, to rebuild the centre of Paris in a similar style. Hence Southport is often referred to as The Paris of the North.

There are more than 1,000 species of flora and fauna along the Sefton coast including 40% of the UK Natterjack Toad population.

Southport has the only Lawnmower Museum in the world, with more than 250 exhibits, including machines once owned by Diana, Princess of Wales, Alan Titchmarsh, Brian May (Queen) and many more donated by the rich and famous.

Southport is home to the largest man-made leisure lake in the UK (The Marine Lake) and the country’s smallest pub (The Lakeside Inn).

Britain’s last official Chief Hangman, Albert Pierrepoint, lived in Southport. Many famous murderers met their maker thanks to him including Ruth Ellis, John Christie and Lord Haw-Haw.

Southport is recognised as a ‘coach friendly destination’ in the UK and welcomes 3,500 coaches per year - or around 140,000 coach passengers.

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