On our way back from Blackpool the first time we visited together, we stopped briefly in Lytham St Annes, which is just down the coast from it.
Lytham St Annes:
Status: Fylde District, Lancashire, Town, England
Eating & Sleeping: N/A
Attractions: Fairhaven Church, Lytham Windmill, Beach, Pier, Assembly Rooms etc
Lytham St Annes is made up of two towns that have joined together, namely St Annes on Sea and Lytham, along with a number of small villages that bridge the gap between the two. To reach Blackpool, the land juts out from mainland Lancashire to create a thick peninsula, with Blackpool at the end looking across towards Ireland, and Lytham St Annes at the bottom looking towards Southport.
As we drove through from Blackpool the first landmark we passed is the Fairhaven United Reform Church, known locally as the white church. It looks incredible, like something you would find in Spain or Morocco.
In 1899 the idea was put forward for a new church in the area, by the Lytham Congregational Church. Four different firms submitted designs, and the winning design was sent in by Briggs, Wolstenholme and Thornley from Blackburn, Lancashire. The building incorporates Byzantine architecture, and the new church opened in 1912. In 1972 it became part of the United Reform Church.
We parked up on the sea front, at an area known as the Green, and although it was a gloomy day it did feel like a pleasant seaside location. The beach and dunes stretch from the border with Blackpool all the way back to near Preston. This area has grassed over slightly but most sections are pure sand.
This part of the sea front is in Lytham, and the Windmill is a prominent local landmark. Known as Lytham Windmill, it is an important part of Lythams history as windmills in the area are a tradition going back hundreds of years, and in 1805 when Richard Cookson bought a plot of land to build a Windmill or “windy milne” as it was known back then. This is the same Windmill that stands today, even though it was damaged by fire at the start of the 20th century, but in 1989 it was restored. Standing next to it in the smaller hut building is the Old Lifeboat House Museum.
In the background of the picture, on the left hand side, you can see the spire of St John’s Church. From 1849. Extensions were added in the late 1850’s, and a lynch gate added in 1897.
Looking around this area, we stood looking out to sea, hoping to catch a glimpse of my home town of Southport. The weather was a bit drizzly and this meant that visibility was quite low, however on a clear day you can see out to Southport with the twin supports of the Marine Suspension Bridge. Likewise in Southport you get a great view back at Lytham St Annes, the beach and behind it to Blackpool Tower.
A handy information board by the sea front told us what to see in the town itself, mainly covering the Lytham section. We didn’t have time to properly explore the town, I think that is something for another day, and I will post about Lytham and St Annes on Sea separately when we get back to them, this post is acting as an overview of the whole resort.
We did however have enough time to walk over to this building, called the Assembly Rooms. It is a grand building opened in 1862, and the building also contained the town baths, and they opened the following year in 1863.
That was all we had time for in Lytham St Annes, but we will go back at some point and see the rest. Other attractions we have yet to see include:
- Lytham Hall
- Lytham Public Library
- Lytham Market Hall
- Lytham Train Station
St Annes on Sea:
- St Annes Square
- St Annes Beach
- St Annes Pier
So there is plenty left to sea, but it’s a great place to visit, situated between the major city of Preston and the popular seaside town of Blackpool, making it a great area to stay in with many attractions on all sides.