West of Walney

Overview West of Walney is a 156km2 area located just off the coast of Walney Island, Cumbria. The mud and sand which cover the seabed here are both brilliant habitats for wildlife. High densities of burrowing brittle stars live in the sandy areas, while urchins, worms and molluscs enjoy the mud, alongside the commercially important Dublin Bay prawn. Delicate sea pens also live on the West of Walney mud; their numbers are in decline.

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° 4' 21" North,
3° 32' 7" West

Surface Area

387.96 km2
(149.79 mi.2 )


80.47 km
(50.00 mi.)

Iconic features protected by this site


  • Subtidal mud (Broad-scale habitat)
  • Subtidal sand (Broad-scale habitat)
  • Sea-pen and burrowing megafauna communities (FOCI habitat)