Walney Channel and Bridge

Walney Channel and Bridge

Walney Channel and Bridge:

Walney Island appeared at the end of the last ice age when rock, clay, and sand were dumped by retreating glaciers.

Over time, the island has become longer and narrower as material from the west shore has been moved by tidal currents.

For those who don’t know the Furness Peninsula, Walney  Channel separates Barrow-in-Furness from Walney Island.

Walney Island protects Barrow itself from the ravages of the sea.

The island itself has three villages – Biggar, North Town and Vickerstown.

The River Duddon flows from the north into the channel from the Estuary and south out into Morecambe Bay.

However, the channel needs to be regularly dredged to give shipping access to the Port of Barrow.

The Channel Bridge

In 1908, due to the expanding population of Walney, a bridge was constructed.

Initially, it operated as a toll bridge and was later renamed Jubilee Bridge in 1935.

The bridge replaced the steam ferry which started service on May 27th 1878.

In particular, it had to be an opening bridge to allow the passage of shipping up the channel to some of the docks.

The bridge opened on July 30th 1908 costing £175,000. As earlier mentioned, the bridge functioned on a toll basis until 1935.

North Scale, Walney Island

Above is the original ferry crossing point between Walney Island and the mainland that ran until the 1940s.

South Walney

Travel south on Walney Island you will arrive at the South Walney Nature Reserve.

Here you can see Morecambe Bay’s resident seal population. It is the only place on the bay where you can see the Great Grey seals as they come ashore near the lighthouse.

Walney Channel and Bridge

You can watch the seals in the sea at high tide from a safe distance, but there is no access to the beach where the seals haul out.

There is a hide at Lighthouse Bay is a great vantage point to watch the seals moving up the beach and closer to you as the tide comes in.

The reserve is also one of the southernmost places in Europe to see breeding elder duck.

From South Walney, you get fantastic views of Piel Castle, built in the 14th century by the Abbot of Furness to guard Barrow-in-Furness against Scottish raids.

Walney Channel and Bridge

If you are looking for a holiday cottage with easy access the Walney enquire here.


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June 3rd
(4 nights)

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