A recent postcard – from last week actually. We decided to spend a couple of nights away, one in Chester and one in Southport. For a long time we had wanted to see Antony Gormley’s iron men on the beach at Crosby, a few miles south of Southport. A little bit of research to pinpoint the location informed us that they are actually called ‘Another Place’. We followed the first brown tourist attraction board to ‘Antony Gormley’s Another Place’ but ended up in a fairly deserted area which just didn’t seem right. There were no further directions, no sign of iron, or real men on a beach, and the water nearby was a lake, not the sea. It was cold, windy and showery; not the sort of weather for exploring unknown territory looking for iron men so we drove away. However, just down the road we saw a local resident repairing his car.
‘Excuse me’, Sue, obviously keen to use the correct title, asked with a big friendly smile on her face, ‘Could you direct us to Another Place please?’ There was a long silence, a puzzled look on the man’s face and definitely no return of the smile. After a long pause he queried,
‘You want me to direct you to another place?’
‘Yes, it can’t be far from here’
After another lengthy pause he suddenly said ‘Oh, you mean the iron men on the beach!’, and proceeded to direct us to the very place we had just left. We gave it another go, still no iron men but this time another couple in search of them. They had just enquired at a nearby building and had been advised to go to Hall Road car park. We decided to forget it for that day, check in at the hotel and ask there. They also recommended Hall Road car park. We decided we would call on the way home the next day.
We found Hall Road very easily and the car park overlooked the first few of the 100 iron men. At least the tide was out and we could see the men, spread out over a large area. It was still cold and windy but we walked on the beach for about 30 minutes, just enough time to take a few photographs.