Monday, 15 September 2014

Crossing the Bay

For more than fifty years Cedric Robinson, Queen's Guide to the Sands, has escorted walkers across the treacherous sands of Morecambe Bay.

We'd initially signed up to cross the bay in early August, but torrential rain had left the river channel too deep and dangerous to cross. Luckily the rescheduled date dawned bright and breezy. We left Arnside promenade at 4.30pm, a crowd of three hundred or more adults, children and assorted dogs to follow Cedric across the bay. I can survey the bay from my bedroom window but it was quite something to look back across the land from this different viewpoint. We spotted the Ashton memorial, Heysham power station and the clustered houses of Grange. A rainbow briefly coloured the view back towards Arnside.

The sand was mainly firm and the river channel deep, but not too deep, just lapping the hem of my shorts. The current was strong though. The bigger dogs swam bravely whilst the smaller dogs and children were carried across. The group trailed over half a mile or so at some points, resembling a biblical exodus. At one point a tractor sped over with horn blaring and driver shouting as a splinter group risked leading us all out into the open sea. After checking the sands, Cedric led us towards Kents Bank. Just as we approached the bank the sand turned distinctly spongy and it was easier to appreciate just how dangerous the sands can be.

Cedric Robinson is the 25th Guide of the Sands, the first being Thomas Hogeson who was appointed in 1548. The guide revives a nominal salary of £15 a year and the use of the 700 year old Guide's Cottage.

The sun was setting as the weary, hungry walkers reached Kent's Bank after an afternoon well spent.


  1. Love the photos, thank you for sharing this experience, fascinating story.

  2. Glad you liked it Chelle.


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