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Lapwing Cycle Route

Burscough Warf, Burscough, Ormskirk, Lancs, L40 5UU

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Lapwing Cycle Route


This circular route will take you through a wildlife rich area in the heart of agricultural West Lancashire.

Starting at Burscough Wharf the route goes through the north of Burscough and then passes through or near several nature reserves.

You will pass through the home of lapwings, dragonflies and butterflies at the Martin Mere Wildfowl & Wetlands Centre before reaching Tarlscough Moss and Burscough Wharf.

You will also pass Windmill Animal Farm and Mere Sands Wood Nature Reserve. 


  1. Begin at Burscough Wharf, turn right onto the canal.
  2. Follow the towpath and continue to the swing-bridge by the Slipway public house.
  3. Turn right onto Crabtree Lane, then continue straight ahead to an unmanned level-crossing (take care and close the gates behind you). Follow the lane to Red Cat Lane.
  4. Turn left onto Red Cat Lane and then first right into Curlew Lane. (For a shorter route, continue along Red Cat Lane to its junction with Marsh Moss Lane, point 9, then follow route back to Burscough Wharf, shown as a dotted line on the map).
  5. Continue along Curlew Lane, to Mere Lane next to Tootle House Farm.
  6. Turn left and follow Mere Lane through a series of bends onto Sandy Way, then up to the first left at Cross Meanygate. To access Mere Sands Wood Nature Reserve, continue along Sandy Way then turn right onto Holmeswood Road. The entrance can be found on the right after ½ a mile.
  7. Turn left onto the tree-lined Cross Meanygate and follow to its junction with Wiggins Lane.
  8. Turn left and continue along the lane, soon you’ll pass Homestead Farm and after a couple of bends, Windmill Animal Farm.
  9. Continuing along the lane, you’ll soon pass Martin Mere Wildfowl & Wetland Centre.
  10. At the next junction turn right on Marsh Moss Lane. Follow the lane to a level crossing by New Lane station and continue to meet the canal.
  11. Turn left onto the towpath opposite the Farmer’s Arms public house.
  12. Follow the towpath, crossing Crabtree Lane alongside the swing-bridge by the Slipway pub, back to Burscough Wharf.


  • Moderate
  • Mostly on quiet roads
  • Distance 9.5 miles
  • Time 75-95 mins.

Bikes can be hired from the Eco Visitor Centre.


Map & Directions

Opening Times

Open (1 Jan 2023 - 31 Dec 2023)

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Windmill Animal FarmWindmill Animal Farm, LancashireOffers visitors the chance to experience the every day running of an actual working farm