Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership share joint message to those visiting Sefton’s beaches

31 July 2023 3min read

A number of organisations across Sefton are joining forces once again this summer to ensure local communities, and visitors from across the North West, can enjoy Sefton’s natural coast responsibly.

The joint action aims to encourage people to take personal responsibility at the coast. Asking them to plan how they are going to get to the beach, to take all litter home with them and to show respect and kindness to staff, the environment and fellow visitors.

Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership

It also sets out the boundaries of what is and isn’t acceptable at the coast to keep everyone safe. Such as that fires and BBQs are not allowed anywhere; that there are water safety risks at the coast so people should follow the advice of lifeguards; and that anti-social behaviour simply won’t be tolerated.

The agencies who make up the Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership will be sharing important messages covering many of the issues faced on the Sefton coast throughout the summer months.

Members of the partnership include Sefton Council, Merseyside Police, Merseyside Fire and Rescue, National Trust Formby, Natural England, the RNLI and other key partners like Merseyrail.

Already this year our coastline saw an influx of visitors to local beaches during the long spell of warm, dry weather we had in June. With schools finished for the summer, we are expecting many families will be looking to enjoy spending time at Sefton’s natural coast.

A visitor guide is available on which contains important information on safety, travel, car parking, and visitor facilities at each coastal gateway.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “We want people to have fun and enjoy their time on our beaches this summer, but we ask in return that they behave responsibly and with consideration to each other, local residents, our staff and our beautiful environment.

“Please listen to what the Council are collectively saying with our partners, be that important water safety information, fire risk concerns, travel advice or environmental issues around litter and wildlife.”

Chief Inspector Tracie Trubshaw, Sefton Local Policing said: “We want everyone to enjoy the summer holidays and we know that many people will want to visit our fantastic beaches and beauty spots in Sefton.

“Our officers will be working with partners to make sure that people can have a good time at our beaches and beauty spots, free of anti-social and criminal behaviour. We will be out in force – on foot, in patrols cars, on quad bikes and anyone acting anti-socially should expect to be dealt with by police in a robust manner.

“We want all visitors to have a relaxing and enjoyable time and show consideration for those who live in these areas. We know the overwhelming majority will do so responsibly.

“If you have any concerns, please speak to our officers out on patrol, or call 101 so that we can take action and keep our communities safe.”

Protect our Natural Coast

Vicky Blane, National Trust General Manager for Formby and Central Lancashire properties, said: “The team at National Trust are here to welcome everyone who loves to visit but we need your help to keep Formby’s nature haven special.

“You can do this by taking your litter home with you, not lighting fires or BBQs and being mindful of other people and the wonderful wildlife all around you.

“We’re expecting to be busy over the summer holidays, particularly if the sun is shining. If National Trust car parks are full, please consider travelling by train or exploring alternative beaches and car parks along the Sefton and Wirral coast.  

“Thank you for your support.”

Water Safety

Chris Cousens, RNLI Water Safety Lead in the North West, said: “Our advice is to visit a lifeguarded beach where possible and to swim between the red and yellow flags. RNLI lifeguards offer advice on how to stay safe and help anyone who gets into trouble. Whether you’re at a lifeguarded beach or not, look out for safety signage and seek advice on safe places to swim, always keep your children under supervision and avoid swimming alone where possible.

“Coastal areas provide a great opportunity to enjoy fresh air and open space, but they can be an unpredictable environment, particularly during early summer when air temperatures start warming up, but water temperatures remain very cold, increasing the risk of cold-water shock.

“Remember, if you find yourself in difficulty in the water, Float to Live: Lean back, use your arms and legs to keep you afloat, control your breathing, then call for help. In an emergency, people can call 999 for the Coastguard.”

Michael Buratti, Senior Coastal Operations Officer for HM Coastguard, said: “Even as we experience warmer weather in summer, the sea can still be chilly and can bring on cold water shock. Please take care before taking a plunge.

“It’s always best to check the wind, weather and tides before entering the sea and observe local safety advice, such as:

  • Avoid soft patches of mud on the beach
  • Ensure dogs are on leads
  • Go to a lifeguarded beach where possible
  • Carry a fully-charged mobile phone, so you’re able to call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard if anyone is in trouble.”

Andy Blythe, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service Station Manager and Water Safety Lead, said: “We want the public to respect and enjoy their surroundings safely, please do not light fires or use BBQs, especially disposable ones.

“Fire will spread very quickly and cause severe damage and harm to our coastal area and wildlife. Disposable BBQs buried in the sand on the beach can also cause serious burns to bare feet.

“Although our coastline is beautiful, it is also very dangerous. If you see someone in trouble in the water remember – CALL, TELL, THROW!

  • CALL - 999 and ask for the Coastguard, inland ask for the Fire Service
  • TELL – tell them to put their head back, spread their arms and legs out and float on their back
  • THROW – throw them something that floats, such as a life ring, throwline or even something like a football to keep them afloat until help can arrive. NEVER enter open water to try to rescue a person or an animal as you will likely get into difficulty yourself.

“And, if you get stuck in mud, don’t panic and struggle, sit down and spread your weight evenly across the surface then call for help.”

Latest updates

People can follow the Sefton Coast Landscape Partnership agencies Twitter accounts for more advice, news and videos throughout the summer: @SeftonCouncil @MerseyFire @MerseyPolice @RNLI @MCA_media @BTPMersey @NaturalEngland @NTFormby @Merseyrail

The continued work of the partnership will also be communicated through the Council’s My Sefton website, and social media channels listed below:

Sefton Council’s Facebook page

Instagram @Sefton_Council

Twitter @SeftonCouncil

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