Princes Way is the seafront promenade road, heading south out of Cleveleys to Anchorsholme and Little Bispham, travelling in the direction of Blackpool.
Cleveleys is in the Borough of Wyre, and the boundary with the unitary authority of Blackpool is at Kingsway – where Cleveleys North Promenade ends and Princes Way begins.
The final phase of the new Cleveleys sea defences were completed in 2010 and finish at the boundary with Blackpool against Kingsway, near the shipwreck memorial and the little pumping station building where there is a hump in the road which forms part of the sea defences.
Princes Way (below) is the seafront promenade and highway out of Cleveleys – the alternative main road is Queen’s Promenade at the other side of Anchorsholme Park.
See high tide at the new sea defences in the clip below.
A large civil engineering project is currently underway by United Utilities in Anchorsholme Park.
New Sea Defences and Promenade
The sea defences and promenade at Princes Way have just been rebuilt.
The between Anchosholme Lane West and the tram stop has been lifted to the height of Anchorsholme Park.
The new sea defences are built with ‘wave breaker’ units to dissipate the energy of the tide.
In between the wave breaker units, concrete staircases give access to the beach.
When tide conditions aren’t safe for you to access the beach a ‘no entry’ sign is hung across the steps on a chain. Please take care and obey the guidance.
The seafront and road was closed from Anchorsholme Park through to the tramline crossing at Little Bispham from spring 2014 to late 2017 for the construction works.
The new promenade is wide and attractive for everyone to enjoy. There’s a stepped arrangement between the upper and lower levels which is part of the design of the flood protection – the added advantage being that this provides endless seating too.
There are long-stay pay and display bays along both sides of the highway. The meters are on the landward side of the road, away from the prevailing weather.
Works are still ongoing in a different project in Anchorsholme Park behind the green boards, which is being carried out by United Utilities to improve bathing waters.
Old and New Sea Walls
Up to early 2014, you would have found a much lower highway at Princes Way against a high brick wall that you can just see at the left of this photo, which retained Anchorsholme park.
It was a traditional style concrete sea wall at Anchorsholme with steps down to the beach, along with a really wide promenade area that people use for walking, cycling and setting up camp when they came for a day out at the seaside. It was also where you’d see lots of camper vans.
Anyone who lives locally or who came to the area frequently would know why the sea defences were being rebuilt.
At high tide, the waves hit the sea wall head on, bouncing up into the air and bringing sea water high into the air and easily overtopping onto the road, which frequently flooded.
It might have been lovely to watch the sea coming over the wall, particularly on a sunny day, but at high tide and with strong winds the road did flood very easily meaning that the barriers were frequently across the road and a diversion in place.
This is the corner behind Little Bispham tram stop where the barrier was often in place when the tide came over
It was also a small step for this flood water to reach further inland, causing flooding to roads, infrastructure like drains and services, and properties. The highways were flooded on more than one occasion.
Have a look at this video clip below, taken in December 2013. You can just see the steps and sea defences of Cleveleys in the foreground, and the first section of wall which is taking a battering is the old sea wall at Princes Way.
It’s interesting to see how the power of the water was affected by the two adjacent types of construction.
The steps on the completed Cleveleys section disperse the energy of the waves, and although water may come up and over the first level it’s in a sweeping trickle rather than a destructive surge and the layered design with rear walls is designed to contain the sea.
By stark contrast, the waves hit the adjoining old wall of the former Blackpool defences only feet away with some force, spraying up in the air and over the wall onto the promenade. The design of the new sea defences at Anchorsholme will reduce this overtopping.
Google map showing Princes Way – the highway which hugs the coast from the end of South Promenade in Cleveleys to rejoin Queen’s Promenade at the tram stop at Little Bispham.