Brickfields forms part of the Mersey Forest in St.Helens and, over the past ten years, has seen the planting of two million trees. The brick theme is used in the site name as a reminder of the industrial heritage of the area, including the former, neighbouring brickworks.
From the entrance, opposite local playing fields, the footpath winds its way alongside the Pendlebury Brook seen to the right of the path in the photo above.
At a couple of points small footbridges, such as the one above, lead us across the brook. Throughout the trail, the route is tree-lined. English oaks were planted along the path together with some cherry trees and pines in order to provide variation. Overall though, the tree, shrub and hedgerow species that have been planted include silver birch, rowan, ash, hazel, hawthorn, holly, yew, field maple, scots pine, dog rose, blackthorn, common buckthorn, and broom.
Many of the trees are quite mature already and the forestry people regularly fell or prune the trees were necessary. Sadly, some of the trees have been thoughtlessly vandalised. In either case, sections of trees that have been felled are left to decay in situ.
Log piles, such as those shown above, will doubtless provide refuge for small mammals and insects.
I did this particular walk in late November last year when there was still some Autumn colour to be seen.
Ted has run on ahead of me, but is now waiting to see which of four paths to follow. One path leads to Lea Green Road; one to Farndon Avenue; one to Walkers Lane and one to Chester Lane – four quite different exit points. We’ll be following a path that will lead us back, eventually, to Farndon Avenue via a diversionary loop.
We’re heading for the extra loop path after a couple of bends from here.
Ted waits to see whether we’ll be following the diversion. A section of it is depicted in today’s Featured Photo. Below the trees, to the left, in a dip, a branch of the Pendlebury Brook heads for the former brickworks site – currently on the market for residential development. There, it will form part of a major drainage system for the site before continuing, crossing beneath two main roads, to pass through a neighbouring Brickfield site and to Sutton Mill Dam. That’s a separate walk, however, for a future occasion possibly.
The leaves of some trees are still in the process of changing colour.
Ted waits again because the path forks just ahead.
At the top of the brow, shown above, we’ll start to return via a different path.
Oak leaves that are changing colour, but will hang on the tree for many weeks yet.
There we are then – the track to take us back, not far after the bend ahead.
The photo that I’ve chosen for today shows the trees that overhang a steep drop down to the brook. I wrote yesterday to warn you that today’s walk wouldn’t be particularly picturesque, but, for me, it’s just around the corner from where I live – and it’s handy for walking Ted. Tomorrow, there’s another walk – one that I did in December last year. I think that you’ll enjoy it. There are some nice photos.
EXIF data were: I used my Fujifilm X-T4 26 MP cropped sensor mirrorless camera with a Fujinon 23 mm f/2 lens. The shutter speed was 1/100 seconds @ f/2 and 23 mm. The ISO was 160.