Visiting the pit closer to home.

After our day out on Saturday which I blogged about here, it seemed like a good idea to visit another old mine.

St Helens used to be a coal mining area, perhaps not as big or famous as Yorkshire or the North East, but it had several pits that used to power the glass making industry that St Helens was more famous for.

 Of course, the pits have gone, closed in the late 80's, early 90's as being no longer financially viable, but I remember the shapes and outlines of the mine workings that stood above the horizon.
So much space has to be reused, and in Sutton Manor the Council decided to make a wild park. There are paths that meander, areas of grassland, stands of trees and everywhere a reminder of the past.

 I loved the poetry carved on the stones shaped like... flames? I think. And the ironwork benches have backs that picture elements of the coal mining industry.

 But the most dominating feature of the park is this.....

 This artwork is called Dream. He/she has its own website here and stands 20m tall. The foundation piles go down twice that, deep into the old mine workings. You might have seen it on the Channel 4 programme, Big Art project many years ago. You will definitely have seen it if you ever pass St Helens on the M62 (as Bernie Clifton used to say, "You'll know when the motorway hits St Helens, because it goes all cobblestoned") and over 100,000 vehicles pass by daily.

 It's a 1km walk up to the statue and a 1km run down. Getting there is easy, follow the Dream signs from Junction 7.
 Of course, it screams out for silly photography like this....
 Although sometimes the humans are the problem, and the walk up to the top can be a little dismal in the rain!
 As a truly thrifty outing, this was a good choice. There is free parking nearby and nowhere to spend any money when you get there. I'm just ashamed that I live only 8 miles away and have never been before, but I will be going again. I didn't have my best camera and the dismal conditions meant the long view (to the Penines, the welsh mountains and over St Helens) weren't the best. I must go back on a clear day.

But for the second time this week I found myself grateful for the men who laboured in the bowels of the Earth.... Dickens again!


  1. I like the look of the benches, always a nice touch when things like this are linked to the area they are in.
    I reckon that would be a good walk to do in the autumn on a nice crisp clear day.
    Lisa x

  2. There is a pizza hut, here's a link

    There is an Odeon in town and a Cineworld on the edge of the city centre.

    Rhino maps can be downloaded but they are also available in some shops like Waterstones.

    If you fancy meeting for a cup of tea let me know, we have dentist and hospital appointments next week so we may not be free when you are in town but you never know!
    Lisa x


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