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Thurstaston Site Guide

Quick reference

Please read the general information about all sites in conjunction with this guide.

OS Map Location SJ237833 (Landranger, Sheet 108)
CANP reference 8.067 (provisional)
Aerial Photo Aerial photo (1:25000)
Wind direction(s) SW
Takeoff Height(s) 60ft (18m)
Top to Bottom 60ft (18m)
Min. Pilot Rating Club Pilot
XC Potential Very limited - restricted airspace downwind
Airspace Liverpool ATZ at 1500ft (480m) begins approx. half mile east of take-off. Class A at 2000ft (610m) above and to westward.
Non-member fee/day none

Site Description

A bank of mud cliffs stretching from Lower Heswall to Gubbins Green in West Kirby, on the west coast of the Wirral peninsula overlooking the Dee estuary. The main take-off and landing areas are in Thurstaston Country Park, a public recreation area which can be busy at weekends and Bank Holidays. The half-mile or so of cliffs from take-off to the boathouse at the western end are soarable in moderate to strong SW winds.


Public parking is available at the Thurstaston Country Park Visitors Centre.


Approximately 200 yards / metres across the area adjacent to the Visitors Centre / Rangers Office towards the cliff top overlooking the beach.

Takeoff and Top Landing

Take-off for paragliders is from the cliff top overlooking the beach. Hang-gliders may also take-of here, but may prefer to launch from the field to the left (SE). Top landing should only be attempted with caution. Land south and west of the pond by the Visitors Centre. Try to land as far back from launch as possible, making sure that you don't come down in the car park behind the hedge - it has been done! The top landing area is often crowded - especially with people flying kites.

Bottom Landing

On the beach: below take-off area if possible. Check state of tide before flying.


Top and bottom rotors occur at more than 20mph and the site becomes very turbulent in gusty conditions. At the western end of the site (past the boathouse) the cliffs become lower but are still soarable as far as Gubbins Green.

There is little height difference between take-off and landing at this site; hence it demands a high level of skill from the pilot.

Site Rules:
. If new to the site or if an inexperienced pilot, seek advice - in advance of your visit if necessary - from the Sites Officer or other Club members who do know it well.
. There must be a club member on the ground at all times while flying is in progress.
. Consider the general public who are also using the site. If it is busy, do not use the main grassed area for prolonged spells of ground handling;
avoid spreading kit about and lay out wings only when preparing to take off
. A windsock must be planted on the cliff edge when flying activity is taking place.*
. If busy, limit the number of wings flying at any one time. Allow for the differences in flying speed of different types of glider.
. Do not try and self-launch hang gliders in strong winds at this site. It hurts!

* This is so that horse riders on the beach can be aware that flying is taking place. In any case, do not launch near or overfly horses.

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