Lake ‘in crisis’ as oxygen levels plummet

Fairhaven Lake in Lytham has been closed due to red algae
Fairhaven Lake in Lytham has been closed due to red algae
Share this article

Fylde Council admits it faces an “ongoing battle” to restore a popular beauty spot to full health after a crisis which claimed the lives of more than 1,000 fish.

Oxygen levels in Fairhaven Lake have plummeted to as low as 1.1 per cent after the appearance of red bloom algae in the water.

Pictures Martin Bostock'Fairhaven Lake feature. / view

Pictures Martin Bostock'Fairhaven Lake feature. / view

The lake is currently closed to the public due to the problem, which the authority hopes to resolve by pumping in fresher water from the sea within a fortnight.

A spokesman for the authority said: “Things are improving. The oxygen level on Tuesday was up to 30 per cent, although it should be 80 per cent.

“We’ve still got a crisis.

“We’ve had a few dead fish in the last few days.

“We lost 1,260 fish two weeks ago so it’s possible the rest of the fish were 
already dead.

The lake was initially closed for 10 days by Fylde Council officials, before 
reopening briefly and then closing again, following the discovery of high levels of red algae in the water, which sucks up oxygen when it dies.

The spokesman added: “There is no more red bloom.

“The problem, we think, is that as it dies and decomposes it uses oxygen in the water.

“We’re fighting an ongoing battle to make up for the 
oxygen decomposing algae.”

Facilities around the lake remain open, but sailing, motor boat use and rowing is banned until the situation improves.

Holiday Association of Lytham St Annes (HALSA) president Barbara Mackenzie said: “It’s a bit of a disaster, especially at this time of year when there’s a lot of holidaymakers around.

“For people with children the Lake’s one of the most 
obvious places to go.

“It’ll be interesting to see what local businesses have to say.

“It could affect the business down there if people are happy to walk around the top part.

“But they might not be too happy to go near the water