Crosby beach isn’t the best in the North West by any means. Neighbouring Bootle it’s all a bit industrial and as you walk to what’s otherwise a beautiful sandy beach, you pass lakes polluted with algae in which dogs must not swim. This is Sefton. It may not be Liverpool, but it’s a place that’s still a bit too scouse for the people of Southport (self declared ‘Paris of the North’), some of whom have set up a political party in the hope of someday becoming part of Lancashire.
There are sand dunes here too and you’re likely to spot the common teenage Scouser killing time. ‘Ermmm! I’ve sand in my shoes, erm’ wailed a female we passed in the style of a child ten years younger (she was about sixteen). ‘Ermmm! It’s getting in all my clothes! Erm’. They are mostly harmless.
More interesting, of course, and fastened most securely to the beach, are Antony Gormley’s Another Place Figures. The hundred life size statues of the artist make for a mystical presence as they stare out to sea and they do capture the other world-ness suggested in their title. I suspect it’s a work that will benefit from being much photographed and seen at different times of day; the position of tide and time make a great difference to the experience. And there’s little doubt they make Crosby beach a little more exciting than Southport.