Cumbria Coast

Site overview: This is an inshore site that stretches for approximately 27 km along the coast of Cumbria. It extends from south of Whitehaven, around the cliffs at St Bees Head, to the mouth of the Ravenglass Estuary. The total area of the site is approximately 18 km2. St Bees Head supports the best, most extensive and important examples of intertidal rocky shore in North-West England. Large numbers of sponges, sea squirts, barnacles, tube worms, crabs and lobsters call these boulders home. Around St Bees Head and at Kokoarrah Rocks the underwater seabed is covered in kelp and a rich turf of red seaweeds, this is one of the best sites for such algae within the area. The surrounding area is particularly important for seabirds with an estimated 10,000 using the area to breed.

Designation Status
Last Updated
6 June 2017
MPA Type
Marine Conservation Zone
MPA Purpose
to protect nationally important marine wildlife, habitats, geology and geomorphology


54° 27' 32" North,
3° 34' 4" West

Surface Area

18.11 km2
(6.99 mi.2 )


68.59 km
(42.62 mi.)

Iconic features protected by this site