The Solway Firth (see
http://www.abdn.ac.uk/sfp/map.htm for map
) is a body of water that borders the most north westerly county of England (Cumbria) and the most south westerly county of Scotland (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. To the west of the Firth is the Irish Sea.
The coastline is characterised by lowland hills and small mountains and is widely regarded as some of the most scenic lowland coastline in the British Isles. 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. However, it has also been used for the location of films such as The Wicker Man (starring Edward Woodward) which was filmed around Kirkcudbright (pron. Kur-coo-bree).
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 on a regular basis. It is recommended that visitors do not attempt to navigate them without expert guidance. Also, MoD had fired more than 6350 DU (depleted uranium) rounds into the Solway Firth from its testing range at Dundrennan by 1999. (see
There are over 75,000 hectares of Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI's) in the area.