Wednesday, 9th January 2019

Walk: Marton Mere and Stanley Park, Blackpool
Start Point: The Plough, Staining Grid Reference: SD 348 361 
Distance: 5.5 miles Ascent: Minimal
Time: 2.5 hours
Weather: A little frost, sunny, rather cool in the shade

On this bright frosty morning thirty-seven people departed from the Plough at Staining.  Eight on a short walk and the remainder on a five-and-a-half-mile walk.  The longer walk was via Marton Mere and Stanley Park returning past Heron’s Reach Golf Club to reach The Plough for lunch.  The route was mainly by way of surfaced paths and park paths.  Stanley Park was opened in 1926 by the 17th Earl of Derby.  It was named after the Earls family name (Stanley).  The park was designed by Thomas Mawson and built in the early 1920s. It is said that it provided work for men previously out of work. The land previously consisted of “the most heterogeneous collection of hen runs, pigsties, stagnant ponds, caravan dwellings and stables we have ever come across.  The buildings were of a temporary nature, margarine boxes, tea chests, biscuit tins and petrol cans being pressed into service for walls and roofing material”.  The park's largest gardens feature a fountain built with Italian marble and a number of statues including a pair of Medici Lions.  The Italian gardens are over looked by a café, designed by Mawson and built in traditional Art Deco style.  Also, in the park, is an 85-foot Cocker clock tower.  The name was given as dedication to the first Mayor of Blackpool, Dr William Cocker.  The tower was constructed in 1926.

A horse but no plough – outside The Plough

A likeness to a full sized windmill in the village

Departing The Plough

On the Rails – early in the walk

A well known land mark and Marton Mere

Don’t fence me in

A scene embedded in the wall of the Model Village

The Dr William Cocker clock tower on Stanley Park

A fountain on Stanley Park

A stone cold statue in the Italian Gardens

The same lady watching a group of Fylde Ramblers take a break

One of two Medici lions in the gardens

Gathering for the “off” after the break in the sun

A caring lady admires the swans on Stanley Park

Seagulls lined up to watch the Ramblers go by.

Footbridge and stream with Blackpool Victoria Hospital in the background

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