December in Granby: The Street Market

The Granby 4 Streets Market is back for a one-off December special this coming Saturday, from 10:00 to 2:00ish.Granby ad Theresa McDermott, who’s been one of the Market’s organisers all this year says:

“Come down for lots of festive cheer – and if that doesn’t come naturally to you, we can help bring it on with some of our mulled wine . There’ll be braziers, roasted chestnuts and lots of bargains.”

It'll look something like this, with less leaves, a light dusting of snow and festive robins sitting on people's shoulders.
It’ll look something like this, with less leaves, a light dusting of snow and festive robins sitting on people’s shoulders.

Continue reading “December in Granby: The Street Market”

Homebaked – Open for business!

Early March 2018 Homebaked’s news is:

“We are delighted to announce we won 3 GOLD, 3 SILVER & 2 BRONZE medals @BritishPies. Well done to all our team of staff & volunteers who have worked so hard to make this happen #morethanapie

Well done then, everyone who has ever worked in Homebaked, and looking back here on the match-day when the bakery fully opened back in October2013. Not so very long ago.

Today’s post is a total celebration, of something wholly good, that’s happened today in Anfield.

From today, open for business.
From today, open for business.

These have been tough years for Anfield and Everton.

Years of slow and painful regeneration.
Years of slow and painful regeneration.
Many homes and people gone, so many pubs closed down.
Many homes and people gone, so many pubs closed down.
Less people to shop, so less shops to shop in.
Less people to shop, so less shops to shop in.
But now, at very long last the future is arriving.
But now, at very long last the future is arriving. Approaching gradually down St Domingo Vale.

Because whatever you think of how it’s been done, new houses are being completed and new people are arriving. And the community of people who’ve stuck with their beloved place are gradually becoming a bigger and newer community. Continue reading “Homebaked – Open for business!”

The Friday Walks – The Welsh Streets

Friday’s walk didn’t cover too many miles, not really. But it took ten years. I’ll explain more in a bit, when we get to the Welsh Streets.

Welsh Streets, Liverpool 8
The Welsh Streets, Liverpool 8

Setting out on today’s urban Friday Walk, it’s a darkly autumnal day and it’s clearly going to rain. But not yet, setting off along Ullet Road.

A carpet of autumn leaves along Ullet Walk.
A carpet of autumn leaves along Ullet Walk.

Continue reading “The Friday Walks – The Welsh Streets”

Inspecting Liverpool, part two

So, continuing my Sunday walk this week. It’s a beautiful, sunny day. And having walked to the Bold Street Festival, through Granby, Canning and down the hill from Hope Street, now I’m outside St George’s Hall.

Waiting for the 19 bus to take me to North Liverpool.
Waiting for the 19 bus to take me to North Liverpool.

I get off at Walton Lane and walk along Bullens Road to the first place I want to see.

Diana Street, Walton.
Diana Street, Walton.

This is the street of my earliest memories. We lived in two different shared houses here until I was three years old. I don’t remember any cars then, back in the 1950s. People like us just didn’t have them. But I do remember standing in the front window sometimes and watching thousands and thousands of people walk past the house.

Because at this end of the street is Goodison Park, the ground of Everton Football Club.
Because at this end of the street is Goodison Park, the ground of Everton Football Club.

Continue reading “Inspecting Liverpool, part two”

Photographing ordinary things

If you’ve followed this blog for any amount of time you’ll know that, aside from our work and my life with Sarah, one of the main things I do is walk around photographing things. Sometimes extraordinary, like a magnificent landscape, a surprising wildflower or the new baby goslings on the lake. But more often I delight in the ordinary. Knowing that the ordinary is as temporary as everything else and, one day, is as likely to delight or interest us as anything else is. Like, if you were to offer to show me the following two photographs or ones of the Grand Canyon or somewhere else I’ve never been, most days I’d say ‘Show me the Garston ones.’

Saunby Street, Garston in 2002. Awaiting demolition.
Saunby Street, Garston in 2002. Awaiting demolition.
Along with much else of 'Under the Bridge'.
Along with much else of ‘Under the Bridge’ back then.

Sometimes I’ll capture the ordinary shortly before I know it’s going. Or occasionally I’ll capture it accidentally. Continue reading “Photographing ordinary things”

Living for the City, going back to Granby

08 CultureFive years ago now Liverpool was the European Capital of Culture, oh yes it was. And that year one of our proudest and most loved cultural items was the Superlambanana, a surrealistic cross between, well it’s obvious. But where has this beloved beast ended up? Read on to find out.City01

June is here and it dawns on a sunny Saturday. Far too cool to go around calling it ‘summer’ but a bright and welcome day nonetheless to go and see how Granby is doing. Continue reading “Living for the City, going back to Granby”

Lost and Found

A story of a place lost and one about to be found again. Mourning somewhere gone, with photographs found years ago in the Liverpool Central Library, which opens its doors once again, this Friday.

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The Library closed for major regeneration works three years ago. And since then, its archive of historical photographs has had to be held in storage while the works took place. But all is now ready, the books and archives have been moved back in and the doors of our beautiful looking new library are about to open. I can hardly wait.

But for now, let’s go back fifty years or so, for a story of a time when Liverpool took to calling itself the ‘City of change and challenge.’ Continue reading “Lost and Found”

Now

Catching up on things in and around our world, the evolving story of life.

Is it another cold Spring, or a late Winter? Hard to tell, but the light’s increasing by the day, so the crocuses are out, the blossoms are beginning, and therefore I think it’s fair to say that, on balance, it’s Spring.

Blossoms beginning in Sefton Park.
Blossoms beginning in Sefton Park.

Working in the park13

Sometimes a warm few hours do arrive and take us by surprise, and it’s been possible for me to work in the park. Continue reading “Now”

And in the morning, afterwards

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Families of the 96, outside the High Court yesterday. MPs Andy Burnham, Steve Rotheram and Maria Eagle with them.

What a day. Let’s remind ourselves of its significance with the words of David Conn, the Guardian journalist who has waited so long to be able to write this:

“Since the Hillsborough independent panel published its report on 12 September, blowing away the myths and police lies about how 96 people died at the FA Cup semi-final on 15 April 1989, there has been a sense that consequences are falling almost naturally into place.

Continue reading “And in the morning, afterwards”

The story of A Sense of Place: An interlude

As I thought about and started to write this it was early December 2012. The time of the year when people are starting to think and ask about ‘What have been the best things?’ In fact, someone had just asked.

And amongst much else, this has been one of the best things of the year. Turning our website into this blog generally. But most particularly writing these six, so far, episodes of the Story of us.

The doing of it has been a joy. Lovely to look back through Sarah’s carefully filed archives for the first time and tell the story of our 17 years of self-employment as ‘a sense of place’. I was just over 40 when the story began and had seriously worried that I might have been too old to make such a radical change. Indeed, one of my leaving cards from my job had shown a small dog stepping out nervously onto a high wire, and was captioned ‘He was an old dog, and this was a very new trick.’

Us two now. Up on Hampsfell, South Cumbria.
Us two now. Up on Hampsfell, South Cumbria.

But of course now, finding the pictures of then, I don’t look much more than a boy. We both look so young. Evidence perhaps that it’s never too late to start doing what you love, and will be best at, for your living. The day will always come when you’ll look back and realise how young you were.

Continue reading “The story of A Sense of Place: An interlude”