Thoughtful Thursday……. Some things don’t Change


Sunset over Morecambe Bay from Cleveleys, Lancashire

Morecambe Bay changes with every turn of the tide.  The above image was taken back in March 1965.

Jean will have changed, and as she will admit to getting older, that will be no surprise.  Prince, the much loved German Shepherd now looks down from his Kennel in the Sky. Despite the passing of time it still brings back some great memories.

Apart from those changes, it is a scene that can be captured on the wide open sands of Morecambe Bay again today…. sunsets not always guaranteed.

The image above is a scan of a 35mm transparency on Ansco Film*

  • If you haven’t heard of Ansco, I suggest you Google it…. a company with an interesting and checkered history.

As everyday…….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

13th January

(C) David Oakes 2022

Moody Monday……. Weather Beaten


Lancashire Coast

Storm brewing…. A weather beaten break water and the stumps of a long gone wooden lookout post. Defiant against tide and many years of storms here at Fleetwood, overlooking Morecambe Bay .

The Lake District Skyline in far away Cumbria, is just visible on the horizon…. on a clear day it is perhaps one of the best views of those distant mountains, enticing… but still far across the wide expanse of the bay.

This Monday and everyday…….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

10th January

(C) David Oakes 2022

CEE’s Black & White Challenge – Bumpy or Lumpy

Sunset-Morecambe-Bay -BW

Sundown over Morecambe Bay, Lancashire

The tide once again carved a unique pattern in the sands of the Bay…. a temporary work of natures art, to be replaced by yet another…. when the tide turns once again.

I have been a tad busy of late so only one contribution to  Cees B&W Challenge.  This week the topic is Bumpy or Lumpy, so take your pick with the above image.

You can join in follow Cees Link :-

There are lots of difficulties surrounding all of us in these strange times….so….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

18th December

(C) David Oakes 2021

Breakfast Time…. On the Wyre


The Wrye Estuary, Skippool, Lancashire

The tide is turning on the Wyre Estuary…….  it will soon be the end of breakfast time, as the sand and mud flats are covered  and the feast for those early risers  will vanish for at least 6 hours.

Whatever the time of day for you…….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

30th October

(C) David Oakes 2021


A Coastal Landmark…. and a Historic Rescue


Lytham Windmill, The Fylde Coast, Lancashire

The Fylde is a an area of the Lancashire Coast that looks out across the Irish Sea.  Bordered to the North by the River Wyre and here at Lytham in the south, the River Ribble. Across the sands that are a feature of the  Ribble estuary,  lies the resort of Southport.

Today the attraction of Lytham’s seafront is a long promenade edge by a broad grass ‘green promenade’. 

Lytham Windmill is a distinctive landmark for the town.  Whilst windmills have long featured in the Fylde’s history, Lytham Mill was only built in 1805 (though suggestions are that an early mill was on this location).  It was built as a grain mill.  The interior shafts and milling equipment supposedly were from other mills. By all accounts it was a productive mill.


Lytham Mill is a Four Sail Windmill.  Only 3 on the images, as one ‘replica’ sail was lost in high winds a few years ago. Nor are those replica sails the correct size.  Originally they were much longer….. and that is why there is a plinth around the base – built to keep both people and animals away from the dangers of the rotating sails.

Whilst Lytham started to prosper and become both a ‘new’ home for Lancashire Industrialist and as a Seaside Resort, thanks to the Railways.   The Mill continued its work.  But it was also became an added, and interesting visitor attraction.

Fortunes changed in 1919.  A sudden severe Gale sent the giant sails into a uncontrolled spin.  The brakes wouldn’t hold and in the process became hot and set the building alight.  Interior, Cap and Sails all destroyed. 


In 1921 the Stump of the windmill was given to the people of Lytham. Restoration work was undertaken.  A new replica Dome or Cap fitted, sails added and interior workings for demonstration installed..  It became at times a museum, cafe and at one point an electric substation.  But age and damp became an issue.

So in 1987 the Council attracted funds and refurbished the Windmill as we see it today.  Still attracting visitors as it did in Victorian days.


Sheltering in the lea of the Windmill is another very important building… The Lytham Lifeboat Station.  Important both in terms of Local History but also a very significant moment in the history of the Royal Life Boat Institution.

In severe gales on the 9th December 1886, the Lytham Lifeboat was launched. It was summoned to take part in an attempt to rescue a German Cargo Boat ‘The Mexico’.  Mexico had departed Liverpool on its way back to the Americas. The gales blew it relentlessly toward the River Ribble and the extensive sandbanks that straddle the estuary from Southport to Lytham. 

The Lytham Lifeboat was not alone.  Sister Lifeboats from Southport and St, Annes on Sea were also sent to the rescue.  The weather was described as extremely sever and the task of reaching the distressed vessel near impossible. Boats who’s only power was the brute strength of the manpower, with  long oars,  supplied by the volunteer crews manning each of the boats, it was indeed a tough task and a very big ask.. 

The Lytham Lifeboat managed to rescue 12 crew from the wreckage of the Mexico (I believe this was the entire crew) and returned them to the safety of dryland.

But the event does not reach a happy conclusion.  Both the Southport and the St. Annes Lifeboats were overwhelmed by the rough seas.  All Lifeboat crew drowned.  14 volunteers for the Southport boat and 13 from St. Annes…. all of course, like all Lifeboat men today…. Volunteers.

The Mexico Disaster is still the worst in the history of the Lifeboat Service.



The wreck of the Mexico was later found washed up on sandbanks in the estuary.  Interestingly, some many years later, the Anchor above, was snagged in the nets of a fishing vessel  working off the coastal estuary.  It is believed to be, and may well be, the anchor from the Mexico.

Not sure just why the Lifeboat Station was built here in the shadow of the Mill…. but it seems to be ‘just right’.  Today the building houses a restored Lifeboat of a similar era and is also a Museum for the RNLI and related local history. 

The Building also has the additions of weather shelters for visitors to Lytham Promenade….  a venue of rescue of a very different form.


The RNLI is there for those who need help on the seas and sands around our coast…  So lets

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

19th October

(C) David Oakes 2021