The first real evidence of an early settlement here is in the Domesday Book, in which the area is called Otergimele.The name is derived from Oddrgrimir meaning the son of Grimm and is linked to the Old Norse word melr meaning sandbank.
Southport lies on the Irish Sea coast and is fringed to the north by the Ribble estuary.
The town is 16.7 miles (26.9 km) north of Liverpool and 14.8 miles (23.8 km) southwest of Preston.
Local fauna include the Natterjack toad and the Sand lizard.
The town contains examples of Victorian architecture and town planning, on Lord Street and elsewhere.
When a widow from Wigan built a cottage nearby in 1797 for seasonal lodgers, Sutton quickly built a new inn on the site of the bathing house which he called the South Port Hotel, moving to live there the following season.