When a friend suggested an evening drive to the beach at Formby point, I gladly accepted. Accessed by way of a lonely road through woodland, the sand dunes at Formby would not ordinarily be somewhere I could visit by my usual means of public transport as night time loomed.
We exchanged greetings with dog walkers and joggers. An older couple helped a small child look for shells whilst sea birds trotted across the damp sand, investigating the shallow pools left behind by the outbound tide.
Staying close to the shore, we made a seat out of stone steps at the foot of the lifeboat station and looked out to sea.
Dusk was descending. The sky shifted through a muted palette of greys, mauve and smoky amber as the sun’s lamp was slowly dimmed.
The camera’s zoom lens revealed the hazy shapes of distant pedestrians, on four legs and two, traversing the expanse of the beach, out to the water’s edge and back again.
Buoys bobbed in the shallow water, guiding to safe passage marine vessels bound for the port of Liverpool, or sailing into the night towards Dublin. Towering wind turbines stood still, imposing but strangely graceful.
The silver ribbon of sea, its mirror-surface bouncing back the last of the light, marked the end of the road where the silhouette of a solitary vehicle was stopped at the water’s edge.