Tranquil Lymm Dam is one of the most popular visitor attractions in the whole of the borough attracting vast numbers of nature lovers each year to revel in its true magnificence and peaceful settings. It truly is an escape. This 17-hectare site which recently won a Green Flag award includes one of the few publicly accessible large water bodies within the area. Situated in the Southeast of Warrington Borough, Lymm Dam is well placed to provide recreational and educational opportunities for both local and regional visitors. Ranger Tim Baker quoted; "Lymm Dam is a place that means many things to many people and sometimes those people can get quite passionate about it".
Lymm Dam was built in 1824 – when a turnpike road was created from Warrington to Stockport. In the early 19th century, the Warrington and Stockport Turnpike Trust constructed the road which became the present day A56. There was concern over traffic congestion as local opposition prevented the road from coming through the centre of the village. The Trust then had to find a substitute and they chose to cross what was then 'a pool and stream' in the valley below St Mary's Church. In order to do this, an earth dam was constructed across the valley in 1824.
After its completion, the pool and stream below the church became the lake, which we now call Lymm Dam. A toll bar was situated on the church slope and for some locals this section of the road is still sometimes referred to as 'Penny Hill'. At the time of Lymm Dam's creation, the area was part of Lymm Hall Estate, which owned much of the village at that time. More information is available on the history of Lymm Dam.
Local schools visit Lymm Dam each year to plant a wide variety of tree species. Since the mid 1980's 12,000 trees have been planted. The Dam is great to visit throughout the year with a kaleidoscope of flowers showing different colours throughout the year. Kingfishers nest in the banks over the main Dam and can be seen streaking low over the water returning to their nest with food for their offspring. The North American Grey squirrel which is competitive and sometimes aggressive has made a home here. If you like to stay out at night you're sure to be in for a treat as wild bats feed over the Dam and hover above the tree tops. More information is available on the wildlife and nature around Lymm Dam.
Taking a walk round Lymm Dam you will see many areas of exposed sandstone rock. Sandstone (sometimes known as arenite) is a sedimentary rock composed mainly of sand-sized minerals or rock grains. Most sandstone is composed of quartz and/or feldspar because these are the most common minerals in the Earth's crust. The sandstone around the Dam was created during a period of time called the permo-triassic and is around 250 million years old. More information is available on the geology of Lymm.
Whether you enjoy cycling, walking, indulging in some ornithology, horse riding, or just relaxing and appreciating the beautiful surroundings, the Dam makes for a great day out. It is considered some of the best angling in the North West, catering for all abilities. More information is available on the activities around Lymm Dam.
At the southern end of Lymm Dam you will see a footpath leading into a wood- 'The Bongs' (Bongs' is a medieval Cheshire dialect word, corrupted from 'le bancs' which means 'wooded banks'). The Bongs is one of only a handful of areas of semi-ancient woodland in the Borough of Warrington(the phrase 'semi ancient' means the woodland itself is older than the oldest trees in it). The wood is privately owned but a public footpath runs through it leading eventually to the A50 Warrington to Knutsford road a mile south of here.
Warrington Borough Council in partnership with the Lymm Heritage Group, Bay Malton Angling Club, Lymm Parish Council and the Keep Lymm Tidy Group work hard to ensure the site is clean, tidy and well maintained at all times. This collaborative, community management approach helps to maintain and enhance the resource. It also utilises close links with local people, businesses, schools, colleges and young peoples' groups to educate, inspire and involve all sectors of the community in their local environment. Attaining the Green Flag award will help to further raise the site's profile and ensure that future development and management is sustainable, balancing the needs and aspirations of the community with the need to protect and conserve this valuable and fragile site, securing it for future generations to understand and enjoy. More information is available on the site management and preservation around Lymm Dam.