The Mersey Forest: 01925 816217
This common was created on the spoil and waste from the Bold Colliery and Power Station. A diverse landscape with water features (including lagoons, streams, wetland areas and a fishery), focal points, artworks, seating areas and an amphitheatre all serve to make the whole site a beautiful and peaceful place to explore as well as an important habitat for wildlife. The widespread network of paths ensures good access for walkers, cyclists and horseriders.
The remnants of mossland around the fringes of the site have been restored and areas of sphagnum moss are expanding. The site supports a range of notable species including water vole, common lizard and 16 species of dragonfly including Blacktailed Skimmer and Emperor.
Turn right out of the St Helens Junction railway station car park on to Station Road.
Follow Station Road to the staggered crossroads.
Turn right and pass under the railway bridge.
At the end of the road, turn left.
Take the path on the left just before the electricity substation, and follow it across the track then round to the right.
Where the path splits, take the left-hand fork and spiral up the mound, then descend the far side.
Turn right at the roundabout-like arrangement of paths.
Turn left and follow the main track as it meanders along the edge of the woodland and past a lake.
Shortly after passing the lake, take a left-hand fork through to another main track. Turn left on this and follow it back to the roundabout.
Turn right at the roundabout, cross the railway, then turn right again and walk parallel to the railway for a short distance. Follow this path round a left-hand bend and along a straight section.
Cross a main track and follow the path along the edge of the site, passing close to a housing estate then bending round to the left. After passing the footbridge leading into the estate you will need to bear right then left.
Turn left when you reach the unmetalled road.
Follow the unmetalled road round to the left (signposted as a public footpath) where it meets a metalled one.
On emerging on to a metalled road, turn right, then left on to Frederick Street.
Cross the park to join Percy Street, and follow this for a short distance.
At the end turn left, then right, and return to the staggered crossroads.
Cross the crossroads and return to the station.