It’s been years since we’d done a version of this walk together, seven years we were surprised to find out by looking back on our own blog. But that’s how life goes isn’t it, surprisingly.

Anyway today was a sunny but cold Saturday morning when we set off for Pickering’s Pasture, just beyond Halebank on the edge of the Mersey. Where Sarah herself had most recently been earlier this week. But on her bike. Part of her now established habit of leaving the house some days and just seeing where her bike takes her. Today we got to Pickering’s Pasture in her car. Our travelling beyond Speke making this one of the very few occasions when I’ve left Liverpool city in this last troubled year.

The walk is only five miles or so, there and back along the banks of the Mersey, to just beyond the Runcorn Bridge you can see in the distance there.

Along the banks of the river all sorts of springtime are bursting into life.

Having lived a very small life for so long now I’d been a bit concerned it might be “too Otterspool” along here. Thousands of people getting out all at once. In fact there were only a few other walkers, most of the people were on bikes, this being part of the Trans Pennine Trail.

This lovely bridge crosses Ditton Brook, a little tributary of the Mersey.

Past forsythia and willow as we get closer to West Bank, closer to the Runcorn Bridge.

The river on our right, a huge Tesco warehouse screened by spring growth on our left.

Nearly lunchtime now.

This being our lunchtime view.

Sarah, by the way, recommends a KitKat as the perfect end to a riverside lunch on a suddenly quite cold day.

And now.

I’m sure I was smiling as I took these photographs. For the heart lifting joy of seeing these two magnificently done pieces of engineering right next to each other.

Another great thing about this green road bridge here is that it isn’t the main Runcorn road bridge any more, just a local bridge with half of its width now turned into a bike lane. Being quieter also meaning it must be much more of a pleasure to walk across. Which we’ll come back and do, another day.

After noticing the ‘bedsprings with mosses’ art in the below bridges edgeland, and a tiny white wild cabbage in the moss, we walked into West Bank.

This was where the old transporter bridge used to, well what? Land? Or dock? Anyway more on that at our previous blog about here.

After a bit more bridge appreciation.

Isn’t that a gorgeous thing? In fact, I think it’s one of my favourite things in the world. Because of the elegance and design of it, of course. But also the emotions it holds. The ‘going on holidays’ it’s often signified. And even more significantly, the ‘we’re nearly home’ nows. For me this bridge is where Liverpool starts, where home begins. And so it’s sacred.

An EasyJet flies over.

And Sarah studies a wall full of spring and a path full of tiny life.

Nearly done for today we walked on until we could see the new bridge.

Last time I was here that wasn’t there. And since I don’t drive any more I’ve never been across it and possibly never will. It’s one of those sneak bridges apparently. Feels just like a road when you’re on it but charges you for going across the river, without telling you until you owe them a fine. A neo-liberal bridge then.

Still we had a sit in a beautifully situated community garden, and then we went home.

But we’ll definitely be back.

Published by Ronnie

Writing about life, Liverpool and anything else that interests me. As well as working with others to make the world a fairer and kinder place: http://asenseofplace.com.

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2 Comments

  1. Nice piece. It’s a great little walk which I/we sometimes do in smaller chunks when time is limited. From my side of Liverpool it’s easier to get to than many of the routes we seem to share. It’s an (mostly) pleasant route especially the quaint & fairly unknown ‘prom’ at Widnes near where the old transporter bridge began. For those travelling by car to begin their walks, Pickerings pasture is a good place to start as is using the car park at the Catalyst Museum. The second option gives you the dual opportunity of Spike Island & the Sankey Brook Navigation heading towards Warrington or traversing the now near traffic free (?) suspension bridge and exploring Runcorn Old Town, the Ship & Bridgewater canals & Wigg Island. (By walking or cycling across the wonderful bridge you of course avoid the toll!)

  2. Very interesting for me to finally see Dutton Brook in the flesh! Such a key part of the prehistoric landscape but I’d barely heard of it until I got interested in Liverpool history. And Runcorn bridge fit me too is homecoming. I stop whatever reading I am doing in the train once we leave Runcorn station and tick off every sight from Ford Halewood to Edge Hill to Mystery to Lime Street! Great architecture.

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