Thursday, 11 August 2016

Liverpool walkabout and some lovely visitations.


We’re moored in the corner of Salthouse Dock and have a good view south towards Wapping and Queen’s docks and the way out of Liverpool for boats should they want to cross the River Mersey. (We won’t be!)


From the Albert dock, looking across Canning Half Tide dock, you get a great appreciation of the recent development along the waterfront. 


After the gales we had overnight, the wind was still blowing quite hard on Monday morning when we took a walk along towards the pier head and cruise liner terminal. There were waves on the Mersey!


Although we cruised past the “Three Graces” when we entered Liverpool on Sunday we got a better look at them this time as they stand majestically looking out over the river estuary . The Royal Liver Building is on the left, the Cunard Building next to it and ………


…….. to the right of the Cunard Building is the spectacular Port of Liverpool Building.


Close to the waterfront by the Royal Liver Building is the memorial dedicated to  the 244 engine room staff of the RMS Titanic when it sank on 15th April 1912. “They had remained at their posts in the stricken liner, supplying electricity and other amenities, for as long as possible so that others could survive”


After our walk around the docks area and returning to the boat, we had a visit from lovely Grace who happened to be ‘home’ in Liverpool from her work as an Entertainment Officer for P & O. We’ve got to know Grace as she’s been on a number of the cruises we’ve been on (including the last half-worldy). It was great to catch up with her over a glass of wine in the sunshine.


Later on, her friend Jess joined us for a short while before they both went off to enjoy their evening together. Thanks Grace for spending some of your precious shore time with us and it was lovely to meet Jess also.


On Tuesday we ascended way above the city skyline when we went up St John’s Beacon (Radio City). We were lucky to get good views for 10 minutes or so before a storm blew in from the Irish Sea. In the foreground is St George’s Hall. To it’s right is Lime Street railway station and to it’s rear is the World Museum, Central Library and the Walker Gallery.


To the west, as we looked out towards the Mersey and the Royal Liver Building.


To the east we focused a close up of the Metropolitan Cathedral. We could have stayed as long as we wanted but the rain put paid to any more viewing so we headed off to an Italian for a very nice pizza.

On Wednesday morning, at 10:30 sharp, we met up with other members of the public and, instead of going up in the air, we went down underground.


It was a real treat to go below the new shopping development of ‘Liverpool One’ and be taken on a free tour around the 300 year old original dock. Danny, our guide, in his strong scouse accent, gave us a vivid and lively description of the the history of the dock and life at that time.


We had access to a small corner of this huge dock which first opened in the early 1700’s. It was the world’s first commercial wet dock and the size of three football pitches and, because it was built with gates which stopped the rise and fall of the tide, it reduced the unloading time of a ship from 2 weeks to 2 days!


The dock was built on the bedrock of and old and very plentiful fishing “pool” which is where Liverpool gets part of its name. Due to it’s revolutionary gated design the dock vastly increased the turn round time of ships unloading and heralded the beginning of Liverpool’s fortunes. The holes where the wooden “fenders” (protecting the brickwork from the ships) were located are still clear to see.


It was really interesting to see the original 300 year old brickwork on one side and the modern piling which supports the city’s new shopping development on the other. Contrary to the belief that TV’s “Time Team” program discovered this dock in three days it was, in fact, a difficult nine year marathon by an archaeological team from Oxford which unearthed this treasure.


On Wednesday we went aloft again – this time to the very plush environment of “Panoramic 34” where we enjoyed a gin and tonic …….


…… at our window table overlooking the city.


The views, as yesterday, were terrific and one view we had this time was of the Salthouse dock where “Chance” was moored. Sadly, the trees blocked the view of our particular home.


We had great views, again of the Royal Liver Building and up the River Mersey.


Also a good close up photo of the massive bulk of the Anglican Cathedral which dwarfs everything around it.


Further round we could clearly see both cathedrals and St John’s Beacon which we went up the day before.


In the early afternoon friends Di and Steve popped over from their home on the Wirral to spend the afternoon with us. They very kindly brought a bottle of bubbly with them and we were able to enjoy a glass or two on deck before going for lunch at Bakchich, a very nice Lebanese restaurant in town.


Just after Di and Steve’s arrival we had a visit from our neighbours “next door”. The lovely Debbie and Danny came and introduced Debbie’s mum Mavis to us. We’d previously learnt that Mavis is an avid blog reader of ours (heaven knows why!) and loves following our exploits and travels. Doug gave Mavis the ‘grand tour’ of the boat (doesn’t take long!) but sadly, they were expecting their own visitors and couldn’t stay for a drink. Well, maybe next time Mavis! and it was lovely to meet you. Thanks also to Di for taking the pic of us:- Doug, Mavis, James, Debbie and Danny.


…. and, as Di was handy with her phone, here’s a selfie of us all!


After lunch we walked up to the most amazing pub – The Philharmonic.


The décor and design inside is just mind blowing (for a pub!). In addition to the main bars there are a couple of little side rooms, called ‘Brahms’ and ‘Liszt’ and a Grand Lounge.


We settled ourselves into a comfy corner of the bar for our after lunch drinks.


The gents toilets are also worth a photo especially as they have a Grade 2 listing!

Hopefully the recent poor photos are now at an end as we now have yet  another new camera!! The one that went in the canal with James recently has done its best but it wasn’t  good enough. This new one is an early (AND ONLY) birthday present for James – and he’d better look after this one!!!!!!!

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