Solway Firth

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The Solway Firth is a firth that forms part of the border between England and Scotland, between Cumbria (including the Solway Plain) and Dumfries and Galloway. It stretches from St Bees Head, just south of Whitehaven in Cumbria, to the Mull of Galloway, on the western end of Dumfries and Galloway. The Isle of Man is also very near to the firth. The firth comprises part of the Irish Sea.

The coastline is characterised by lowland hills and small mountains. It is a mainly rural area with fishing and hill farming (as well as some arable farming) still playing a large part in the local economy, although tourism is increasing. It has also been used for the location of films such as The Wicker Man (starring Edward Woodward), which was filmed around Kirkcudbright.

The Solway Coast was designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in 1964.[1] Construction of Robin Rigg Wind Farm began in the Firth in 2007.



The water itself is generally benign with no notable hazards excepting some large areas of salt and mud flats which often contain dangerous patches of quicksand that move frequently. It is recommended[by whom?] that visitors do not attempt to navigate them without expert guidance.

There are over 750 km² of Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) in the area, as well as National Nature Reserves at Caerlaverock and in Cumbria.[2]

Islands in the Solway

Unlike other parts of the west coast of Scotland, the Solway Firth is generally devoid of islands. However there are a few examples:

The Isle of Whithorn is actually a peninsula.


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