From the earliest records of 1207 and the original seven streets, witness the birth of the railways and abolition of slavery. Experience a time when a castle stood at the end of Castle Street and the Mersey lapped the bottom of Water Street, along the Strand of the Mersey. The halls and mansions of wealthy merchants and stunning Georgian architecture tucked jowl by jowl with houses, bars and taverns crowded with workers, travellers and emigrants.
Liverpool was proudly proclaimed Second city of the Empire and the grandeur of its architecture and influence of its people during Victorian times and later, did not disappoint. The times saw the Mersey packed with shipping, both sail and steam, while magnificent structures like St George’s Hall, Walker Art Gallery and Museums drew universal praise from the likes of Dickens; Pevsner; Herman Melville and the Queen herself.
With 27 Grade 1 listed buildings and more Georgian houses than the City of Bath, few places can rival the variety of styles and array of iconic architecture possessed by Liverpool over the centuries. Though some have gone; the castle; tower; halls and medieval homes; many remain; monumental docks and warehouses; Tudor Speke Hall; Stuart Bluecoat Chambers; gems like the Oratory and Wellington Rooms and the neo-classical masterpieces of the Lyceum, St George’s Hall and William Brown Street to the Three Graces of the early 20th century.
From the humblest of beginnings when the river curled inland to the ‘pool’, chart the growth of Liverpool via views of the 13th century port, with the castle and tower of Liverpool prominent among the handful of streets in existence. Discover the city’s growth over the following centuries; see how streets emerged or vanished and marvel at the truly stunning, full colour cityscape created from the vantage point of a tethered balloon during the 1860s.
People make history and none more so than in the vibrant streets of Liverpool, where landmark events have shaped the growth of the town over the centuries. Civil Wars; cotton and slavery; markets, merchants and maritime adventures; fortune and famine! Cultural and sporting icons, pioneering reforms; taverns and coffee houses...forever buzzing with the lifeblood that is the River Mersey.
Privateers; men o’ war; slavery; cotton traders; emigration and the ‘Ferry ‘cross the Mersey’, Liverpool is almost unrivalled when it comes to historic ships and the impact it has had on the world. Famed for shipbuilding and shipping lines like Cunard and White Star, owners of Lusitania and Titanic, not to mention the impact of CSS Alabama and Shenandoah in the American Civil War. Then there’s the historic trams; the world’s first passenger rail service with George Stephenson’s locomotive ‘Rocket’ and the iconic overhead railway.