Scottie Press: A Liverpool Institution

Celebrating 47 years and counting of independent local news and opinions

Yesterday morning I spent  a couple of hugely enjoyable hours in the office of, arguably, Liverpool’s most opinionated newspaper, talking about?

‘The power of local news in communities and the role Scottie Press has in the regeneration of north Liverpool’

Well so the paper’s newish editor later summed up our rambling conversation, which roamed all over the place, from my own time of first working in the area during the paper’s early days, to his own ideas about north Liverpool’s future and the potential importance of Scottie Press in helping to create it.

We had a great time and I came away with a role for me in the paper’s future, which I’ll tell you about in a bit.

But first back to the start of it all in 1971. Continue reading “Scottie Press: A Liverpool Institution”

Growing up in North Liverpool

In the early days of this blog we had a look round Liverpool in 1953, the place I was about to get born into. In this follow up to that one we’re going to come in a bit closer. Having spent much of my life with no early photographs of my early days, I’ve recently gathered up a few, courtesy of my Dad. And they’ve got a story to tell.

But before I arrive, of course, my parents have to meet.

My Dad, Joe Hughes, with his sister Terry.
My Dad, Joe Hughes, with his sister Terry.

In this lovely picture Joe is eight and Terry four. Meaning it’s 1936. They are living in North Liverpool down by the Dock Road.

“Even at that age, in those days, we were allowed to roam wherever we liked and I was trusted to look after Terry’ Joe says now. ‘We’d go to church on our own and then go off wandering around the docks and streets and even into town. I remember me and Terry being in town together even after it had gone dark. We had a much bigger Liverpool to play in than children seem to be allowed now. It was great.”

When the war comes three years later Joe is still too young to join the forces. Continue reading “Growing up in North Liverpool”

Home

Listen to this blog post on BBC Radio Merseyside here.

Home, the place where you can grow up happily, knowing it’s always going to be your home. Welcome home this little one from us at Coming Home Liverpool.No apologies at all for not having written much on here lately, Jayne Lawless and I have been busy. As the two partners in Coming Home Liverpool we’ve been busy creating our first home for a family in North Liverpool. And now it’s done and they’re all moved in. On a fair rent and a permanent tenancy.Yesterday there was a celebration at the house. A celebration you can listen to from the links at the top and the foot of this post. Continue reading “Home”

Coming Home in the Liverpool Echo

There’s something about being in an actual printed newspaper that confirms an ideas existence more than anything digital can. And this week Coming Home’s existence has been confirmed by the Liverpool Echo.

The Coming Home team on site. Me, Jayne Lawless and Steve Ross of Penny Lane Builders.
The Coming Home team on site. Me, Jayne Lawless and Steve Ross of Penny Lane Builders.

Knowing though that many of this blog’s readers don’t live around Liverpool or even in England I thought I’d reproduce Echo journalist Josh Parry’s article about us on here. So here it is.

How one affordable housing scheme is transforming Liverpool’s empty properties. 

‘Coming Home’ team tackling both housing shortage and empty homes problem. Continue reading “Coming Home in the Liverpool Echo”

Coming Home: Our First Home

'Coming Home' by my Granddaughter Ellie Melhuish.
‘Coming Home’ by my Granddaughter Ellie Melhuish.

We are going on site. Keys to our first home will be handed to builders later this week, ready to start work on turning a house that’s been empty for two years back into a home.

Though I haven’t written about Coming Home for some time on here we have been very busy getting everything going. Lots of time on legalities, practical preparations, working with Liverpool City Council’s Empty Homes team and with much help and publicity from BBC Radio Merseyside thank you, so that now we are ready, ready to start work on our first home.

Jayne Lawless of Coming Home, centre, working on our branding (coming soon) with Hayley Oldfield and Fiona Shaw.
Jayne Lawless of Coming Home, centre, working on our branding (coming soon) with Hayley Oldfield and Fiona Shaw.

Continue reading “Coming Home: Our First Home”

At the Invisible Wind Factory

DSC03053In North Liverpool along the Dock Road a company of artists, scientists, engineers and musicians are conducting an Experiment. An Experiment in Invisible Wind. So, obviously I went to have a look.

Next door to Make Liverpool where this blog is often to be found.
Next door to Make Liverpool where this blog is often to be found.
Is the new Kazimier laboratory and performance space.
Is the new Kazimier laboratory and performance space.
The
The Invisible Wind Factory.
We are shown into the reception area, all of us joining the Experiment today.
We are shown into the reception area, all of us joining the Experiment today.

Due to the nature of the Experiment and the equipment involved we are instructed to turn off our phones and also to take no photographs. I have partial exemption on this, though once we enter the Omphalos Chamber, the core of the Experiment, I will not be allowed to take photographs. Continue reading “At the Invisible Wind Factory”

One Day in Liverpool

DSC02490 (1)Knowing this was likely to be an interestingly varied Wednesday, I decided I’d photograph my way around Liverpool and record what happened and who I met,  on one day late in April in 2016.

Cold but sunny, so I decide to walk to my first meeting.
Cold but sunny, so I decide to walk to my first meeting.
All of us are feeling emotionally fragile, I'll find as I travel round the city.
All of us are feeling emotionally fragile, I’ll find as I travel round the city.

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 “One Day in Liverpool”

Introducing: Coming Home

A few times on here lately I’ve alluded to a new idea I’ve been working on, saying I’d be ‘telling you about it soon.’ Well soon is now, and I’d like to introduce ‘Coming Home.’

Coming Home.
Coming Home.

As you’ll know if you’ve been around this blog any amount of time, one of the core beliefs that has driven the whole of my life has been that having a decent home is a basic human right. And that any society that is failing to ensure that decent homes are being provided is a failing society. We are a failing society by that measure. So I’m going to do everything I can through ‘Coming Home’ to put that right.

Because until you know you have a decent place to come home to.
Because until you know you have a decent place to come home to.
Somewhere to be comfortable and to rest.
Somewhere to be comfortable and to rest.
Somewhere you can be fully yourself.
Somewhere you can be fully yourself.
And take care of yourself.
And take care of yourself.

Then you’re not really having very much of a life at all. Continue reading “Introducing: Coming Home”

One Beautiful Day: North Liverpool

One of a pair of blog posts about things I was involved in on Friday 8th April 2016. One beautiful day in North Liverpool.

Out to the North Docks early morning Friday, to the event I’ve been organising the past couple of weeks with the help of all my Beautiful Ideas friends who I’ve been telling you about for a while now.

This is the day our ideas go public and we’ve invited lots of politicians, business leaders, entrepreneurs, academics, general friends – oh and two football clubs – to come and discuss them with us and how we’ll be using them as part of creating a new and alternative economy in North Liverpool.

DSC01964

The invite to the day says this will be:

“One day with people who are doing social and economic change differently, to talk about how we could all do it even more differently and effectively in North Liverpool.

Taking place on Friday 8th April in a new maker space being opened up and renovated in Liverpool’s North Docks. So taking place inside a Beautiful Idea in the making.

This will not be a day of power points and presentations but of linked discussions and debate about ideas, needs, opportunities and possibilities here in North Liverpool, now and for the future.

How we are going about creating an economy for everyone who lives and works here not by simply waiting for investments from elsewhere, but by investing ourselves, our skills and our imaginations in the future of our place.

Makers, bakers, bikers, creators, engineers, gardeners, fixers, builders, artists, actors, organisers, thinkers, dreamers and doers. Working together on a new economy, here in our North Liverpool.”

Continue reading “One Beautiful Day: North Liverpool”