The previous day, after a 27 year wait, we’ve had the findings of the Hillsborough Inquests into the deaths of the 96. And through the day we’ll all talk about how tense we felt, how the whole city seemed to hold its breath waiting for the judgements. Continue reading
I’ve spent the last couple of Saturdays working in my local library. I love to go there when I want to really concentrate on writing something. I love too the serendipity of finding what I didn’t even know I was looking for when accidentally sat next to an unfamiliar bit of library. These are sacred places.
But today I decided on a change. Decided I’d get the bus down to Liverpool Central Library. The new camera’s not been there yet so is naturally keen on a good look round.
Don’t worry, we are walking towards the library. I’m ‘putting it in context!’ Continue reading
In Granby 4 Streets, PlusDane and Liverpool Mutual Homes have been on site for some time now. And very gratifying it has been to see them. Still, they’re big organisations with lots of experience and that’s the kind of thing you expect them to do. But now they’ve been joined on site by something wonderful.
So obviously I had to get down there and have a look at this.
All of the 10 Community Land Trust (CLT) houses are on Cairns Street Continue reading
My post the other day on ’10 things I’ve learned from ‘A year to live’ carried the unsurprising news, to anyone who knows me and/or reads this blog, that I’ll be living in Liverpool for the rest of my life.
“I am happy where I am. I know I will never go to Machu Picchu, or climb Kilimanjaro or go snorkelling (with dolphins or not) off the coast of the Great Barrier Reef. Because I’m happy where I am and I don’t want to miss a day of it. This has not been a travelling life. Earlier yearnings and travels have gradually centred me in the Northern and Western British Islands. And now the furthest from home I want to travel is still home really. To Anglesey or to Mull or across the water to Ireland maybe. But never too far from this Liverpool. Where my heart beats.
During this year a couple of possible travels have been considered and not so much rejected as evaporated, from my lack of energy and interest. Given a year to live I am enjoying my time exploring and photographing and treasuring the land on both sides of the river I was born by. It’s enough, and it’s here I’ll stay. The streets, the people, the public libraries, the parks, the cafés, the quiet corners, the marmalade sky sunsets, and Granby 4 Streets, and Homebaked in Anfield, and Eldon Grove and, oh well, all the precious things I go on about. This is my place. I am from and of Liverpool and am of an age and experience where I am happy to carry some measure of responsibility for it and regularly convey my thoughts and suggestions to those elected to carry actual responsibility.
Years ago I would say that if you cut me open it would say ‘Liverpool’ in my bones. Now there’s no need to cut me open, any reasonable geologist could identify me as Liverpool on sight.”
Elsewhere in the article I mentioned seizing moments and no sunshine being wasted. So this morning when a work meeting was unexpectedly called off I did what is now my habit and retaliated by taking the rest of the day off. As I write the sun is gently setting, but this has been a gloriously blue autumn day. A day when no camera should go unused. Continue reading
It’s about a quarter to four on 15th April 1989. I’m on my own in the place where I was living then. A Saturday afternoon, working on songs, doing my music while everyone else is out. But my mind is not entirely on my music because I know that Liverpool, Liverpool Football Club, are playing in the semi-final of the FA Cup, against Nottingham Forest, at Hillsborough, in Sheffield. So, around half-time I turn the radio on to hear how they are doing.
For some years now I’ve been telling myself I don’t particularly care how they are doing. That football’s not that important to me. That, in fact, in these difficult 1980s where all Liverpool’s had going for it has been the successes of Liverpool and Everton, football has become an ‘opiate of the masses.’ But, despite this Marxist thinking, I always know how they’re doing. I always know where they are and who they’re playing. And I always know what time they’re kicking off. I’m from Liverpool, you just do.
Which is why I turn on BBC Radio Merseyside at a quarter to four on 15th April 1989. To hear how they’re doing at half time. Continue reading
While I was on top of Liverpool Cathedral yesterday taking my photographs for Liverpool 8, I did of course face the opposite way for some of the time, looking at the river and the city centre. Here’s how it all looked.
Visibility getting better as I turn away from the sun.
Just to the right of the church there, and in the next picture, you can just see what appears to be a railway tunnel. In fact this is the disused station of St James. Continue reading
Given it’s one of Liverpool’s most celebrated streets and the principal ‘gateway’ to the city, Lime Street can often seem an unloved and little celebrated place. So let’s love it and celebrate it.
This version of the grand old hotel is celebrating being 100 years old this year. The place fascinates and repels me in equal measure. It has corridors wider than whole rooms in Liverpool’s more modern hotels and standards of service so legendary they’ve been the subject of almost celebratory TV shows. Liverpool somehow wouldn’t be quite Liverpool without it. Continue reading