Lancashire: A glorious getaway

Lancashire is a county of northern England blessed with a beautiful coastline, forests, waterways and heritage towns.

My home city of Manchester was part of Lancashire until 1974, so there’s a natural pull to day trips which are close to home.

I’ve often explored the county’s glorious countryside, which offers an escape from the big city. Here’s just some of what I’ve captured on camera with plenty more still to see.

Where should I go next in Lancashire? Please leave your comments below

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New Brighton: Back to the Mersey

The resort of New Brighton sits on the edge of the Wirral peninsula, next to the River Mersey estuary and across from the city of Liverpool. It’s a place worth revisiting. CONTINUES BELOW

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It’s nearly five years since my first visit to New Brighton on a cloudy day. My return was marked with a splendidly sunny winter’s day and clear blue skies.

The scenic attractions of this Victorian resort remain: Perch Rock lighthouse which is irresistible to photographers, the tall red cranes of Liverpool’s port across the Mersey and amazing views of the city.

After exploring the rich sands of the beach and enjoying those Liverpool vistas, I left the promenade and wandered to New Brighton’s Victoria Quarter, an area of shops and cafes painted in vibrant colours.

I then clambered up the hill to see the impressive cupola of Saints Peter, Paul and Philomena Catholic church for the first time – well worth the steep incline.

This was a return trip to enjoy the coast and discover a little more about New Brighton. If you ever get the chance, make a stop here.

New Brighton lighthouse and red cranes of Liverpool portLink to mikeosbornphoto's shop

Manchester’s new Oxford Road

Oxford Road in Manchester is a long thoroughfare synonymous with the city’s thriving student life.

It has grand old architecture but a crop of sleek new buildings have recently sprung up.

There are student accommodation blocks, modern apartments and smart buildings housing academic and research facilities.

The National Graphene Institute, the Circle Square residential development and even a multi-storey car park are among the striking new buildings featured here.

New architecture is one of my favourite photographic subjects. How about you? Or do you prefer something more traditional?

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Link to mikeosbornphoto's Manchester photo shop

Chasing fog

We’re in the grip of winter in the UK, including thick fog which occasionally shrouds our cities and countryside.

I woke up to this one recent Sunday morning, quickly got dressed, grabbed my camera and went out into the cold.

It was swirling around the modern skyscrapers of my Manchester neighbourhood but seemed to be moving away with unexpected speed. But I could still see it creeping in the distance.

So I chased it over to our twin city of Salford, where it lay very deep by the Irwell river and an area called The Meadow. Wandering back into Manchester, I noticed the mist was having a second wave around the high rises.

Photographing the ghostly pall of fog isn’t always easy – have you tried? Please leave your comments below

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Link to mikeosbornphoto's Instagram account

Formby: A wonderful winter beach

Formby on the Merseyside coast is one of north-west England’s most popular seaside spots.

But there’s no glitzy resort town, built-up promenade or lines of beach huts. Just acres of sand, rolling dunes and pine forests to explore.

More than three years after my first visit, I returned on a chilly winter’s day and in the wake of Storm Arwen, which felled large pine trees on the roads leading to the beach.

My walk along the sand blew all the cobwebs away, while epic clouds began to fill the sky. So long as you’re wrapped up warm, a winter beach is wonderful, don’t you think? Please leave your comments below

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