Carr Mill Dam

Carr Mill Dam in St.Helens

Carr Mill Dam is situated just off the A580 East Lancashire road, near to Billinge, St.Helens.

Dam overflow

At 0.22 km2, Carr Mill dam is the largest inland body of water on Merseyside and was expanded, in the mid 1700s, from being a small mill pond to a large reservoir to hold water to keep the Sankey canal topped up. Carr Mill Dam is used both by St.Helens Angling Association and the Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club, who both hold competitions on the water.

Water Skier

Carr Mill Dam is fed by two streams, the Goyt and the Black Brook, which both enter from the Billinge side of the Dam. The dam has two overflows, which feed into the blackbrook basin, which leads to the Blackbrook Canal, a part of the Sankey Navigation.
The newer of the two overflows is pictured here.

Water skiing also takes place on the Dam, and skiers can be seen on many sunny evenings and weekends.
Water Skiing is run by, and is an active section of, the Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club, who also, occasionally, hold water Ski jumping competitions.


There are numerous nature trails and footpaths around the dam, as well as a wide variety of wildlife. The Dam is a great place for Birdwatchers and is home to one of the biggest Great Crested Grebe populations in Merseyside. Kingfisher, Little Grebe and Grey Wagtail are seen all year round. Woodpeckers, Willow Tit, Sparrowhawk, migrant Pied Flycatcher and Wood Warbler have also been spotted.
For more bird sightings aroun the dam visit the StHelens Bird Watching enthusiasts Website at

The Sankey Valley Country Park, starts from the side of Carr Mill Dam, making Carr Mill an excellent starting place for a full days outing, or to take your dog for a long walk.

carr mill panorama Anglers Deck

Panorama, above, shows only the back end of Carr Mill Dam, this end is preferred by anglers.
To the rear of this side of the dam are woods,farmland and pathways leading up to Billinge. Those keen on fishing may be interested to know that there are bream, perch, roach, skimmers, pike, tench, gudgeon, mirror carp, common carp, and eels.

The photo, right, is of two of the many decks placed around the edge of Carr Mill Dam, that are used by anglers.

For more information on fishing at Carr Mill, visit St.Helens Angling Association website here.

car park Waterside Beer Garden

At the entrance to Carr Mill Dam there is a large car park and a pub and restaurant called The Waterside. The Waterside has a beer garden to the rear with views over the Dam.
The Waterside is a "Great British Carvery Pub", and has recently opened after an extensive refurbishment and now proudly boasts a stunning yet comfortable and homely restaurant and bar with lovely spaces perfect for private hire.
You can visit their webpage, for menus, here

clubhouse beach

The picture to the left is the Clubhouse of the Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club, the clubhouse is licensed to serve alcohol and food and is opened on race days. See the, New, Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club website, here, for more details

The picture, above right, is of a rest area with a small beach. On hot days you will often find youngsters playing and swimming in the area off the beach.

Please do not swim, or allow children to swim in the dam when there are boats on the water.

The video below is the Turner Trophy race (3rd April 2011)

The weather was a little damp. There were not as many racers as usual, probably because this was the first race of the season, but the racers and spectators who were at Carr Mill Dam appeared to be enjoying the day.

The photographs below, were taken on 17th August 2009 during one of the Lancashire Powerboat Racing clubs race days.
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Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club also offer an exciting opportunity to try a motor sport with a difference in their Junior Training Boat.
For boys and girls age 9-16, the boat, powered by a 15hp Yamaha outboard engine, travels at about 35 miles per hour. Ideal as a Birthday or Christmas gift or simply as a reward. See the, New, Lancashire Powerboat Racing Club website, here, for more details

Click on the photographs below to enlarge

  • Airtours sponsored powerboat Carr Mill boathousepowerboat racingBRM boat Juniors powerboatsSafety BoatCherry Boatjuniors No 12 BoatAirtours powerboatPowerboat racingOpen Class Blue PowerboatCiadel boatDrag RaceTight Turn

More photographs of Carr Mill Dam, in St.Helens, are available here on our Gallery... img

A photo, from around 1920, of the pleasure pavilion on Carr Mill Dam

This Photograph, provided courtesy of Mr Derek Wilson, is from an auction catalogue of the time and shows the pleasure pavilion situated almost directly opposite the water from where the existing boathouse is situated. The remains of the Carr Mill Dam pavilion are still identifiable today.

For a copy of the auction catalogue, please use the link below to download the document in pdf format. If you don’t have adobe reader, it is available at the Adobe website for free download.

leisure pavillion

Download 1920’s land auction catalogue for Carr Mill Dam and surrounding area, here (3.6 MB)

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