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Birkenhead Docks: Alfred Basin Public Footpath

Photographs  John H. Luxton 2009

In recent years there has been much tightening of security around UK seaports which has sought to impose an almost an aviation style security regime. This has seen the closing off of vantage points, footpaths and some previously existing rights of way. However, it is pleasing to report that on Merseyside there has been something of a relaxation at Birkenhead Docks. During August 2009 a footpath was opened running alongside Alfred Basin and Lock. The path commences on Seacombe promenade near Alfred Lock Gates.

The area around the lock itself remains a restricted area the path being separated from this area by a security fence. However, once past the lock the path switches to the water side of Alfred Basin until it reaches the roadway by "A" bridge on the "Four Bridges" road. Until the mid 90s it had been possible to walk through Alfred Basin area from the river front. However for over the past 10 years it had been closed off following the erection by Mersey Docks & Harbour Company of security fencing and gates.

Obviously the new owners of the Port of Liverpool, Peel Ports, have different ideas and reopening of this path is to be welcomed by those interested in shipping providing as it does an excellent vantage point to view vessels passing through Alfred Basin to East and West Floats. The route of the path has also been resurfaced for most of its length.

Well done Peel!  The only downside your web master can see is that the newly opened path has been well discovered by the local dog walkers already and as there are no "pooper scooper" facilities one really does need to keep and eye on where on puts one's feet especially at the river end of the path!

Photographs taken along the path on September 05
 

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