Wirral’s Viking past will be commemorated with a weekend coastal walk to mark the day the “Viking Saint” died in battle.

Sunday’s St Olav’s Day walk will be from the site of the old Viking church at St Bridget’s in West Kirby – where there is a famous Viking hogback tombstone – to St Mary and St Helen Church, Neston - another church with strong Viking roots.

The Neston church contains fragments of at least three Viking crosses, one of which has been beautifully rebuilt into a painted replica featuring a Viking lady with her arms touchingly around the waist of her husband.

After a special ceremony at St Bridget’s Viking Stone, dedication to St Olav and blessing by the Rev John Bleazard the walk will proceed along the Wirral Way and the Dee coastline, stopping for a break at the Thurstaston Visitor Centre.

The eight-mile walk will continue through Heswall onto Neston where tea and cakes will be served and Viking stonework will be demonstrated.

Prof Steve Harding, who has worked tirelessly to celebrate the North West’s Viking connection, said: “The whole of Wirral and beyond are welcome to share our great heritage.”

His initiative has even attracted recognition from royalty.

His Majesty King Harald V recently appointed him a Knight of the 1srt Class of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit – the highest honour for a foreign national who is not a head of state for ‘outstanding service in the interest of Norway.’ Earlier this year Prof Harding masterminded a scheme to erect four unique “dual language” signs in Thingwall, which was thought to be the site of a Viking Assembly.

They are believed to be the first of their kind in England to feature Old Norse and English.