Pennington Flash

South-West Leigh, 1 mile

Country park with shallow‐water lake, walks, and bird‐watching


image of pennington-flash
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Get there

Public transport: Best route is the path behind the college, which is wide, flat and off‐road. But the start is 10 mins of busy road. Hint, if you have a pedal bike, take it.


Pennington Flash is a large stretch of water, near a mile. It’s got a carpark like you won’t see often in England—long, rambling and likeable. This is a flash, not a reservoir, which means the water is shallow. So, although there’s only a few feet of pebbles it’s safe to go to the water, and there’s near‐quarter of a mile of that. The Flash is popular, so many days you’ll find icecream and chip vans. There’s also a visitor centre and toilets; they’re not up to much, but (2022) the local council have planned improvements. To the north and some of the south is empty land, and not one but a few paths weave about the pools and swamps at the edge. Birdwatching hides near the swampy area and, if it’s your thing, a golf course over the stile. But The Flash has downsides. The west end is suburbs so you can’t walk round without half a mile of urban road. Also, there’s an assumption The Flash is near Leigh—it’s not. And finally, The Flash is what we’ve said—if you’re near and have family, it’s a good afternoon out. However, birdwatching aside, Pennington Flash may be likeable but no reason to come out of town.