Who Owns The River Mersey?

It may on the face of it seem to be a strange question but who owns the River Mersey?

A short while ago I found myself on the Crown Estate website and I learnt that The Crown Estate owns and manages extensive marine assets throughout the UK, including 55% of the foreshore and all the seabed out to the 12 nautical miles limit. So that naturally got me thinking about who owned the Mersey!

I contacted the site and a few days later received a reply:

Generally speaking The Crown Estate owns the foreshore and bed on the south west (Birkenhead) side of the tidal sections of the River Mersey, to the centre point of the river.  Much of the north east (Liverpool) side of the tidal section of the river is owned by the Duchy of Lancaster.  There are a few exceptions to the above and one or two sales of foreshore, or admitted claims from within these areas.

The Duchy of Lancaster detail what part of the coastline is owned by them on this page, which details:

Part of the ancient inheritance of the Duchy was ownership of all foreshores in the County Palatine. Extensive interests were sold during the nineteenth century, such as the Mersey Docks and Blackpool promenade. The Duchy remains the major owner of foreshore between the centre point of the River Mersey and Barrow-in-Furness. The area extends over 50,000 hectares. Historically, foreshores have not been a great provider of revenue. The coastlines, river beds and estuaries now have greater potential value in association with energy, conservation, transport and leisure uses.

So now you know who owns the River Mersey!

2 thoughts on “Who Owns The River Mersey?”

  1. The foreshore at New Ferry near Rock Park and the Refreshment Rooms public house is in a very sorry state. If the Crown Estates are owners …..it is a disgrace that they are not keeping this coastline in good order. The council for the area are Wirral Borough Council so why are they not encouraging involvement from the Crown estates if they are the owners ??

    The same may apply to the foreshore at Eastham Ferry where the local authority are Cheshire West and Chester. This foreshore is also in a poor state.
    Both these areas have pubs / restaurants right on the foreshore and could be wonderful attractions to both visitors/ tourists and local residents.

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