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Squirrel Cycle Route

Eco Visitor Centre, Southport, Merseyside, PR8 1RX

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Squirrel Cycle Route


This linear route links Southport to Formby and passes several Nature Reserves.

You will travel along the line of the old Cheshire Lines Railway, passing the Queens Jubilee Nature Trail, Birkdale Nature Reserve, the Sands Lake Nature Trail and Pontins Holiday Park.

You then pass through Ainsdale Sand Dunes Nature Reserve, the home of the sand lizards and natterjack toads, before reaching Formby Golf Club and Freshfield Dune Heath Nature Reserve.

You will also pass RAF Woodvale before reaching the end of the route at the entrance of the National Trust site, famous for its Red Squirrel population.

  1. Turn right from the Eco Centre car park and head down Esplanade. Go straight on at the roundabout and join the cycle track at the side of the Coastal Road.
  2. Continue along the track, passing Birkdale Sands Local Nature Reserve, up to the next roundabout.
  3. Go straight across the roundabout where you pass the Coronation Flight sculpture. Built to commemorate the Ainsdale to America flight in 1937 which was to transport newsreel of the Coronation of King George VI to America.
  4. Continue along the track until you reach the bridge over the rail line. Just before the bridge join the stone track to the left and follow it round to the right. Passing under the bridge and entering Ainsdale Sand Dunes Nature Reserve.
  5. Follow the main track through the reserve until you reach Fishermans Path. To the right this path leads to the beach but it is not suitable for cycling.
  6. Turn left and follow the path through Formby Golf Club, this section must be walked.
  7. Cross the railway level crossing and turn right, passing the edge of RAF Woodvale, the Lancashire Wildlife Trust site and the Freshfield Dune Heath Nature Reserve.
  8. Go through the gate at the end of the track onto Montagu Road. Continue to the end of the road before turning right onto Victoria Road, passing Freshfield Train Station.
  9. Follow Victoria Road until you reach the entrance to the National Trust Site, home to a Red Squirrel colony. The route ends here, retrace your steps to return back to Southport or alternatively you can return by train. They run every 15 minutes from Freshfield Station and there is no additional charge for taking a bike on Merseyrail trains.


  • Easy / moderate
  • Mostly off road
  • Distance 7.5 miles
  • Time 50-60 years

Bikes can be hired from the Eco Visitor Centre


Map & Directions

Opening Times

Open (1 Jan 2018 - 31 Dec 2018)

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