Scenic walk thousands drive past on M62 everyday that ends in an unexpected surprise

The Dream Sculpture at Sutton Manor Woodlands
The Dream Sculpture at Sutton Manor Woodlands -Credit:Andrew Teebay/Liverpool Echo

It can be seen for miles around, but you shouldn’t let that deceive you.

I’m talking about the The Dream Sculpture, nestled away at Sutton Manor Woodlands in St Helens. The gigantic 20-metre-high face was unveiled in 2009, as a tribute to the former colliery and miners of St Helens.

Designed by artist Jaume Plensa, the head represents a young girl dreaming of a better future and the lasting memory is still in impressive shape to this day.

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When I went to admire its height in person, I didn’t realise there was a heavenly scenic walking route that came along with it. If anything, it made the hour-long walk to the finish line much more bearable.

It must be said the walk can be done in a much shorter route, but we had our friends Labrador, Benzo, with us. Sitting on the former colliery, reflecting the heritage of the location, it’s hard to imagine the 230-acre site being anything but it is today.

After leaving the easy-to-find car park, the tarmac paths, which were steep at times, were ideal - and safe - to let your pet off for the majority of the peaceful stroll. Having said that, there were very few dog bins.

Along the venture, there was plenty to do - between admiring the natural beauty of the site, wildlife spotting, or plonking down at one of the many picnic benches and enjoying an iced coffee - just as we did. There isn’t much around in terms of shops so do come prepared.

Once you make your way through what seems to be a never-ending amount of slightly overgrown muted grass and countless frail wooden branches, the sculpture is waiting for you. Despite it being the reason you’re likely there, it still takes you by surprise as it is hidden by a thick sea of bark and leaves that have seen better days.

Dream itself is very dramatic to say the least, and is somewhat reminiscent of Newcastle’s Angel of the North. Once you reach the statue, there are signboards placed next to it, to explain everything you need to know about it in detail.

The striking statue has been on my to-visit list for years now, and once I got back home, instead of ticking it off. I added it back on, except this time, at dusk or dawn. I can only imagine how atmospheric it would be against the backdrop of a sky bursting in reds and yellows.

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