Rossall Beach Cleveleys

Look Around Rossall Beach on Cleveleys Seafront

Rossall Beach is the sand and shingle beach heading north beyond the ‘new’ stepped sea defences at Cleveleys. It’s a more natural landscape than the formal, central section of seafront.

The top section of beach is pebble and shingle, giving way to beautiful clean sand. On all but the roughest of stormy day there’s always a dry section of shingle left against the wall when the tide comes in.

This video clip is from the free seafront car parking area at Rossall Promenade –

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Visit at any Time of the Year

Glorious as it is in the height of summer, Rossall Beach is also a great place to visit during the colder months.

Pack your wellies into the boot, and enjoy a bracing wintery walk! Stop off at The Venue when you’ve finished for a hot drink and something to eat. A lovely afternoon out.

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Rossall Beach is Dog Friendly

In common with most UK seaside resorts, the main beach against the steps at Cleveleys is subject to a dog ban during the summer season.

But Rossall Beach isn’t classed as a bathing beach – despite being very popular. This means it’s somewhere you can walk your dog, all year round.

You ARE still expected to follow these guidelines:

  • Dogs should be on a lead on the promenade walkway,
  • You should always pick up after your dog (and bin it) whether you’re on the path or beach,
  • Please keep an eye on your dog and keep it under control. Respect other beach users, and also keep an eye on its own safety. From time to time there will be dangers lurking on the beach. For example broken glass, discarded fishing hooks and palm oil.

More information about dogs on beaches in Cleveleys

Seafront Parking

Rossall Beach is a popular spot with visitors – because you can park right against the sea wall and sit and watch the world go by. Enjoy all of the fabulous views and sunsets, whatever the weather.

Seafront parking at Rossall Promenade, Rossall Beach Cleveleys
Seafront parking at Rossall Promenade, Rossall Beach Cleveleys

It’s a fabulous spot to come for a walk, or potter about on the beach, and of course it’s all for free. There are plenty of seafront benches, and Danfo public toilets a little further south at the cafe. It’s like home from home!

On sunny days (and Bank Holidays) throughout the year it’s not unusual to find the seafront car park completely full. Alternative parking is available.

A Natural Environment at Rossall Beach

The beach material gets graded naturally by the waves and the sea.

The biggest of the pebbles are left on the higher reaches of beach. They filter in size, down to smaller ones as you approach the golden sand in the tidal zone.

Rossall Beach at Cleveleys, see the Lake District beyond the sea
Rossall Beach at Cleveleys, see the Lake District beyond the sea

Interesting Wildlife

At a glance it looks like quite an inhospitable environment, just pebbles and sand.

It’s actually a rich resource for wildlife, and supports many sea birds all through the year. The twigs and seaweed on the strandline provide a home for invertebrates. In turn these insects and grubs are the meal for hungry sea birds.

Sanderlings, Turnstones and Knot can often be seen in large numbers. And flocks of Oystercatchers with their distinctive long, bright orange beaks and legs. Not forgetting the resident population of gulls. They stand facing into the wind, peeping with their plaintive cries and waiting for anyone to feed them!

Turnstones on Rossall Beach Cleveleys
Turnstones on Rossall Beach Cleveleys

Did you know? Many seabirds use this beach as a refuelling point in their migratory flights around the world. It’s an important stopping off point for them throughout the year.

Seals are also seen sometimes at Rossall Beach, which is a testament to how clean the water is. Be quick to spot their black heads bobbing along.

You’ll usually need binoculars to pick them out them from a swimming gull, and you need to be fast! Occasionally an odd one ends up on the beach too. More often than not they wash up after meeting their maker, in various stages of decomposition.

But very rarely a real, live seal will stop on the beach for a rest. If you are lucky enough to see one please don’t disturb it. And don’t approach it either – they can give a nasty bite!

Flotsam and Jetsam

Because this beach remains dry at high tide, flotsam and jetsam get’s stranded here by the retreating sea, creating a strandline. From the seafront cafe, along the Rossall Promenade car parking area and heading further north to Fleetwood, you’ll find all kinds of things.

What interesting things have you found on the strandline? You’ll find natural debris like mermaids purses, shells, and small creatures, plus of course, the ever present plastic waste. You’ll find more stuff left after a high tide and strong winds.

From time to time you’ll also see dead animals washed up. Quite often you’ll smell them first! It’s not unusual to see dead porpoise, seals, seabirds and even sheep.

Watch this clip of the sea and beach on a lovely sunny day in December.

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Cleveleys Sea Foam

Have you ever seen the foam flying at Cleveleys?

It can happen at any time during the year and not just in winter. This video is from 2 June in 2015. A combination of wind blowing in the right direction and conditions in the water agitates the froth into a wobbly mass which blows off the beach.

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In contrast, the next video is from December – and the warmth of the car! In the worst weather the foam can actually build up to several feet in depth. It’s actually down to entirely harmless algae, holding bubbles of air.

Read more about the seafoam at Cleveleys here

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Watersports and Things to Watch

Rossall Beach is a popular destination throughout the year for water sports. See people kitesurfing, paddleboarding, fishing and such like. 

Kitesurfing at Rossall Beach Cleveleys
Kitesurfing at Rossall Beach Cleveleys

You’ll also see people swimming, and it’s a popular place for horse riding too. That’s before we mention dog walking – so there’s always something to watch!

Watch the kitesurfers in this short clip –

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not to mention the sunsets…

We couldn’t leave this page without a mention for the amazing west coast sunsets.

Rossall Beach is the place to visit at the end of a bright, sunny day, to watch the sun go down. Winter and summer sees the most beautiful skies – no two are the same. Why don’t you join the audience!

Love sunsets? You’ll love this gallery of sunset photos on Visit Fylde Coast.

Sunset at Rossall Beach Cleveleys

Rossall Beach – a Natural Sea Defence

The sea defence of the shingle beach at Rossall Beach is the most naturally stable part of the Wyre coastline.

The high sandy, shingle beach is the best possible type of protection against the sea. It efficiently dissipates the energy of the waves, reducing the likelihood of overtopping.

In the next photo you can see how, in moderately rough weather, the waves taper to nothing on the shingle of the beach in the front of shot. Yet they bounce off the wall and into the air when they hit the concrete defences in front of Rossall School.

But please don’t take the pebbles!

Please don’t take the pebbles off the beach – because in doing so you’re weakening the sea defence.

You’d be surprised how many people would take them – if left to their own devices. The trouble is they take near-on industrial quantities – not just an odd one or two. Just imagine if everyone did the same. There’d be no beach left – leaving the area prone to flooding.

Wyre Beach Management Scheme

Although the natural sand and shingle bank is a brilliant natural sea defence, it’s not as stable as it could be. Nothing stops it from being washed away by rough weather, leaving the area vulnerable.

The Wyre Beach Management Scheme will help to sort that out. It’s going to stabilise the beach by helping it to build up and keeping the material in place.

Big rocks will be placed along the length of the sea wall, then covered by sand and shingle. They’ll stop the beach from eroding and leaving the wall vulnerable to being undermined by the sea. New stone groynes will help to reduce turbulence in the sea and reduce erosion of the beach.

Find out more about the Wyre Beach Management Scheme

Looking after Rossall Beach

Rossall Beach Residents & Community Group look after this area of beach.

They hold monthly community beach cleans for members and the general public to join in with. There are full details on their website – anyone is welcome to join the group and join in with activities.

The Waterfront Rangers at Wyre Council support the group who have also Adopted the Beach through the Marine Conservation Society (MCS). MCS monitor what’s washed up by the tide through their annual national beach clean. The evidence helps them to petition utility companies and manufacturers to change their practices and stop the rubbish getting into the sea in the first place. Have you noticed that cotton buds now have cardboard stems? This is why!

Benches at Rossall Beach

When Rossall Beach Residents & Community Group formed in 2008, there was hardly any seating along the seafront, so the group provided two new benches.

Way back in 2012, with £850 of funding from the People’s Postcode Trust, the Group installed benches on the built out areas against the beach.

Trustees of the Rossall Beach Group with the new bench which they installed in 2012
Trustees of the Rossall Beach Group with the new bench which they installed in 2012

In the following years, many more memorial benches have been added, each one with a plaque in remembrance of loved ones. They look like wood, but they’re recycled plastic. Weather proof and maintenance free they cost in the region of £500 and are available by contacting Wyre Council.

Information Boards on the Seafront

Rossall Beach Residents and Community Group provided the seafront information signs. They make your walk more interesting by telling you all about the beach. You’ll see information about the plants, animals, conservation and views. The marine environment, pollution and how you can help by doing your bit. 

They stretch from the seafront cafe to the Five Bar Gate near Rossall School, creating a trail to lead you along the beach.

One of the newly installed information boards at Rossall Beach Cleveleys. This one is about plastics in a marine environment
One of the newly installed information boards at Rossall Beach Cleveleys. This one is about plastics in a marine environment

Members of the group used their experience and knowledge to research and share the information. They successfully applied for grant funding to manufacture and install the notices. The first five boards were put in place in September 2012. Another five were added on Friday 18 May 2018.

Learn about the marine environment

The new boards explain various aspects of the beach environment.

  • One is about bathing waters and all the work to make the sea cleaner.
  • Another about the damage which plastic does in a marine environment.
  • Why the pebbles are an important part of the sea defences.
  • Find out about just some of the creatures which live here.
  • Meet the Rossall Beach Group and find out how you can do your bit to help – at home and on the beach.
  • This popular one explains the views and the windfarm.
About Walney Offshore Windfarm - Rossall Beach Information Boards
About Walney Offshore Windfarm – Rossall Beach Information Boards

Grant awards were thanks to United Utilities managed by the Community Foundation for Lancashire. The Lancashire Environmental Fund, DONG Energy and the Big Lottery.

While you’re here…

Have a look at the homepage of the Visit Cleveleys website for more of the latest updates.

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1 thought on “Look Around Rossall Beach on Cleveleys Seafront”

  1. Graham Hargreaves

    When I lived at Rossall Beach as a young lad in the early 1950s there was a live firing range where the bollards are, with a huge sand hill behind the wall covering a bunker with rise and fall targets. We used to dig 303 bullets out of the sand. At each end of the range on the sea wall there were five bar gates, hense the place name, which were closed and a red flag flown when in use.
    On firing days you had to go down along the beach to pass and as shown in the photo above there was no lower concrete sea wall, just a rock face we used to play in called the caves. The rock had been hollowed out by the tide which used to crash in to it with a noise like thunder. This was the point that the tide broke through and flooded everywhere, I lived on Broadway and remember opening the back door in the morning and the tide came in. The repair seemed to take for ever and kept us young lads entertained.
    There was another range North of the school and they shot from near the road at Broadway to the wall. Health and Safety would go mad nowadays.

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