Wednesday, 2 December 2009

The Pier Head

I saw the antiques programme ‘Flog it’ on Monday and was ashamed of myself. It was being broadcast from Liverpool and Paul Martin, the presenter, was showing off the new Museum of Liverpool building to be opened at the Pier Head in 2011. I wasn’t even aware of it. Another huge building was being erected next door to it as well. I realised it was over ten years since I was in the city centre itself and during that time there have been lots of new office blocks, an enormous new shopping precinct and these two buildings. I really know so little about what is going on in the Merseyside area. I am determined to change this and make an effort to get out and about and keep an eye open for interesting events in the future. So on Tuesday, despite a cold wind and thick cloud I headed for Liverpool.

There were, of course, Penguins everywhere but I shall post about them and various other things I saw on another day.    I shall concentrate on the Pier Head today.These two penguins were outside the ferry terminal building and, by jove, it was cold enough for them on Tuesday! 

Above:- The Royal Liver Building

Above:- The Cunard Building

Above:- The Port of Liverpool Building

The new Museum of Liverpool building.  This will house a large collection of items relating to the history of Liverpool over the centuries including such grand items as the steam engine 'Lion', a carriage from the old Overhead Railway; and first Ford Anglia ever to roll off the Halewood assembly line.

Sitting next to the ‘Three Graces’ (the Royal Liver, the Cunard Building and the Dock Board) the Museum is a very modern and striking design. It seems to me to be entirely appropriate to the area and I understand it is the largest purpose built museum in the UK in the last 100 years.

The Leeds Liverpool canal was begun in 1773 and ’finished’ in 1816 but the Liverpool end only went as far as Stanley Dock. Recently it has been extended all the way to the Pier Head. There is a temporary hitch higher up the canal which means there are no canal boats reaching here as yet but it will be really colourful when they do.

In the centre of this picture  is the Mann Island scheme. It is all angular black glass and has three buildings which will contain commercial space,  retail and leisure space, apartments and a car park.

The Port of Liverpool Building (formerly the Mersey Docks and Harbour Board Offices, more commonly known as the 'Dock Board'), a Grade II listed building, reflected here in one of the new eco-friendly Mann Island buildings.

I hope you enjoyed your trip to Liverpool's Pier Head and I shall be happy to give you more conducted tours of the city of my birth another day...


  1. I went on a visit to Liverpool about 15 years back and I was amazed at the change then from my previous visit many years before that. I expect I too would see a lot of difference now. Lovely photo's, thank you for braving the cold!

    Love Granny

  2. It must have been a shock to see the state of the new if its been ten years...thanks for the tour!! I havent been and should one day!!

  3. Thanks John I prefer the old to the new, Funny how we all tend to ignore what is on our doorstep. Like Glasgow Liverpools architecture is vastly under rated.

  4. Always interesting to visit other parts of our country the easy way!

  5. "...but the Liverpool end only went as far as Stanley Dock." No - when the canal was first built it went all the way to Old Hall Street, almost in the city centre. From there to Eldonian village has since been filled in.

    Boats have been coming right down through the Pier Head since March. See this link.
    The boats go through and moor up in Salthouse Dock, next door to Albert Dock. There may be a few there now but many will have gone back to their home moorings for the winter!

  6. I was at Liverpool during it's Year of Culture. The WI's National AGM was held in the new Hall by Albert Dock. Can't think of the name right now, but I remember the steps down to the water's edge and statue of P.McCartney. But you know, I loved old buildings best, they had a style the new ones can't achieve.

  7. The museum building is impressive. But I love the design and architecture of the old buildings. They are so beautiful.
    Love that last shot! Thanks for the tour!

  8. It's not currently coming all the way to the Pier Head, Martin. I spoke to some people who were on a narrow boat holiday but had had to get a car into the city because there is currently a blockage somewhere.

  9. I hope that we can make some excursions into the old City when I'm with you next year. I never thought I'd have any nostalgia for the place but you have awakened it.

  10. Thanks for the guided tour! I don't think we ever got to Liverpool back in those days when we travelled in Britain. The new museum really looks strikingly 21st century compared to the old buildings.

    I haven't been to the town where I was born since my parents moved away from that area 17 years ago. Have absolutely no idea what new buildings might have appeard there since then!

  11. Only been to Liverpool once when I was about 13, to take the ferry across to Ireland.
    Great photo by the way!

  12. Thank you for your hard work, I have been and had a look round my heart stays with the old but, it is weird how the new fits in.


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