Mersey River in England: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Sarah Caughron

Sarah has a master's degree in Applied Anthropology/Archaeology and has worked in formal and informal education since 2006.

Splashing in the estuary of the Mersey River in England are bottlenose dolphins and Atlantic gray seals. This river is more than a habitat to some amazing aquatic life. Read on to learn more about the history of this river and how it functions today.

What Is the Mersey River?

The Mersey River is a river in England. Similarly named rivers exist in Tasmania and Canada, but the most famous Mersey River is located in northwest England. The Irish Sea and the Liverpool Bay flow from and into the Mersey River, and this allows sea animals including Atlantic gray seals, bottlenose dolphins, and harbor porpoise to swim through the waters.

The Mersey River is located in northwest England.
Mersey River

Flowing westward, the Mersey River is formed with three tributaries (smaller rivers) coming together in Stockport, England. The tributaries are the Etherow River, the Goyt River, and the Tame River. Like the River Ganges in India, many British Hindus believe the Mersey River to be sacred.

The Mersey River is 70 miles long, which is twice as long as the state of Rhode Island in the United States. The name Mersey comes from Anglo-Saxon origin and consists of words meaning river and boundary. This is an appropriate name because the Mersey River is, historically, the natural border between two counties, Cheshire and Lancashire.

Export Superhighway

During the Industrial Revolution (a boom in manufacturing and business in England in the late 1700s-mid-1800s), the Mersey River played an important role in moving goods and services in and out of England. The Mersey docks were busy, particularly in the 18th century, and the docks in Liverpool were considered some of the busiest in Britain at the time. Goods being exported included coal from Lancashire, pottery from Staffordshire, and salt from Cheshire. Sheep from Wales and metal from Birmingham also were among the goods transported out of England at this time.

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