British Liverpool is famous not only for the Beatles. Although this legendary group is in a sense “city-forming”. But do not forget that the oldest city in England is also the cultural capital of Europe.
What to do in Liverpool
The sights of Liverpool are, first of all, architecture, representing a symbiosis of Victorian traditions, Gothic, classicism and modernity. This fusion will appeal to people who strive for new discoveries.
From frozen forms to a special atmosphere. The port city has long and seriously claimed the title of the art capital of Europe. Galleries, museums and small conceptual theaters work here. Aesthetics and those who are tired of trivial entertainment will want to visit such places.
And, of course, thousands of The Beatles fans come here every year to visit the museum of the Liverpool Four, see the houses of the band members and go to the legendary club where it all began.
The Royal Liver building was erected for the company of the same name in 1914 on the Pier Head embankment. The 13-story building made of dark brick is crowned with two towers and a giant clock with a diameter of 7.6 m — so that port workers can always know what time it is. In the dark, the dial turns on the backlight.
The top of the dome is decorated with figures of birds. Several legends are associated with them. The most popular says that the birds protect the Liverpool on land and at sea.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the Royal Liver was the tallest structure, often compared to American skyscrapers.
The first building in the world built on the basis of a metal frame, complemented by huge windows in holder frames. It was with this design that the construction of skyscrapers began in America, and then around the world.
The Art Nouveau building appeared in 1864, and 90 years later it was modernized by adding several outbuildings. Oriel Chambers has 5 spacious floors. The protruding windows are framed with metal frames, the vertical supports are decorated with arrow-shaped tips.
The baroque building, built in 1907 on the city’s waterfront, was the headquarters of the Mersey Docks and Harbor Board for nearly 90 years.
The 5‑storey building is crowned with an octagonal domed tower. The facade, lined with Portland stone, is decorated with columns, porticos and arched windows. At the entrance at the main gate there is a globe supported by dolphins. The interiors are richly decorated with statues and maritime-themed paintings.
During the Second World War, the building was damaged by bombing. More money was spent on reconstruction than on construction. Several episodes of the cult TV series The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes were already filmed in the renovated interiors.
Town Hall was built in 1754 for the city hall, and since then it has not left it. The pompous building with columns, porticoes and pilasters has a rectangular shape. The top of the building is decorated with a cylindrical superstructure with a dome.
The interior has been preserved unchanged since the 18th century. The halls are richly decorated with mosaic panels, stucco and frescoes. Huge working fireplaces, heavy chandeliers, metal candlesticks and antique furniture complete the authentic setting.
The building was erected in the 16th century using half-timbered technology — its whitewashed beam walls rest on a stone foundation. The space between the wooden frame elements is filled with clay. The facade has remained unchanged since its construction, but the interior rooms have been modified and rebuilt over the course of 150 years.
The house has secret passages and rooms where Catholics hid during religious conflicts. Its other feature is the complete absence of the amenities familiar to modern man.
For nearly 400 years, the house has been owned by three different families. In the 19th century, Speke Hall went to the city due to the lack of heirs. Today it works as a museum, where the things of the past owners are exhibited.
The building, built for the University of Liverpool in 1982, has been perfectly preserved to this day. The red brick façade is a striking example of Victorian Gothic. The pointed towers, narrow arched windows and the clock on one of the two towers look elegant.
Until 2008, the Victoria Building housed auditoriums, a library and a reading room. Today there are shops and a restaurant.
Radio City Tower
The height of the Radio City Tower is 138 m. This is the second largest building in Liverpool. The tower was built in 1969 and was then called St. John’s Lighthouse. Its main attraction was the revolving restaurant. However, it was closed after a few years, and after him the use of the tower itself ceased.
The building was later restored to accommodate communications equipment and renamed the Radio City Tower. Today, the tower houses offices and shops, and an observation deck is equipped at the top, from where Liverpool is visible at a glance.
An interesting building was built in 1717 for a local school. It has the shape of the letter H, built of red brick and decorated with local light stone. An octagonal turret with a dome rises above the central part. The façade is decorated with a clock, large arched windows let in a lot of natural light. In 1906, the school was moved to another location, and Bluecoat eventually transformed into an art center.
The futuristic building bears little resemblance to a cathedral in the usual sense. The Catholic Church was erected in 1967 as a kind of response to the Anglican Church, which built the Liverpool Cathedral.
The design project that won the World Architecture Exhibition was created by Frederic Gibberd. He came up with a building with a round base and a massive dome resembling a crown. Inside there are huge stained-glass windows, a snow-white marble altar and a colossal organ with 4,565 pipes.
The Cathedral of Christ and the Virgin Mary is the largest religious building in the UK and the fifth largest in the world. Its area is about 10 thousand square meters. m. The height of the bell tower is 67 m, and it contains the heaviest collection of bells in existence. The largest bell weighs 31 tons. The tower of the cathedral rushes into the sky at 101 m, and a panoramic platform is equipped on its top.
Museums and art
Lady Lever Art Gallery
The museum is located in the picturesque village of Port Sunlight in the suburbs of Liverpool. The industrialist Lever began to collect the art collection, and when it ceased to fit in his mansion, he built a museum.
In a neoclassical building with antique columns and a transparent dome, works by artists of the 18th-19th centuries, a selection of Chinese porcelain and objects of arts and crafts are exhibited. The museum, founded in 1914, became available to the general public only after the death of the merchant’s wife, Lady Lever.
The art gallery, named after the industrialist and philanthropist Sir Andrew Barclay Walker, appeared in 1877. It is considered the largest in Liverpool and one of the largest in the UK.
The building, built in the best traditions of the classical style, exhibits paintings by artists of the XIV-XX centuries. In particular, a significant collection of works by the Pre-Raphaelites, English artists who worked in the style of the Early Renaissance, is stored here. The expositions present world masterpieces of world significance: Rubens, Murillo, Paul.
Dock warehouses were built in 1846 from stone — before that, all such complexes were built exclusively from wood. In the late 1930s, the Albert Dock lost its significance, and its deplorable state was aggravated by the bombing of World War II.
Nowadays, the docks have been restored, turning them into an art space where you can visit interesting exhibitions, watch art films, dine in a good restaurant and drink a cocktail in a trendy bar. Along the closed bay, surrounded by galleries, paths were laid, trees were planted and there were benches for rest.
The Liverpool Art Gallery is part of the Tate Gallery system. The museum was opened in 1988 on the territory of the Albert Dock in one of the converted warehouses.
It houses over 60,000 exhibits of British art from the 16th century to the present day. A significant part of the exposition is given to contemporary artists and sculptors.
Tate Liverpool often hosts cultural and educational events for children and adults.
The Merseyside Maritime Museum occupies several rooms at the Albert Dock. An extensive exposition is devoted to navigation and everything connected with it. Here you can see miniatures of famous British ships, paintings by marine painters, busts of prominent captains, and at the same time trace the entire history of the port of Liverpool. The entrance to the museum is decorated with a giant anchor.
Museum of Liverpool
The City Museum was opened on the Mersey Riverfront in 2011. A futuristic building with strict geometry resembles an alien ship. The effect is enhanced by huge windows on the facade, reminiscent of the captain’s bridge from Star Track.
Inside is an extensive collection of nearly 6,000 items, all related to Liverpool. A year after the opening, the museum was recognized as the best in Europe. The jury evaluated the attendance and content of the exhibitions.
Memorable places of The Beatles
John Lennon House
In an inconspicuous duplex at 251 Menlove Ave, John Lennon was born and spent his childhood. It was here that the decision was made to create a cult group that turned the world of music upside down.
Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, claims that the immortal hit “Please, Please Me” was written in this house. Today there is a museum here. It recreates the atmosphere in which the musician lived and worked.
Beatles History Museum
The museum tells a similar story of the famous group — from the moment of its foundation until the collapse in 1970. The exhibition occupies several halls, each dedicated to a certain stage in the life of the Beatles.
Rare exhibits include concert costumes, musical instruments, handwritten lyrics, personal items, unique photographs and video footage. Fan gifts are presented at a separate stand.
The legendary Cavern Club is a place of pilgrimage for Beatles from all over the world. Opened in 1957, it witnessed the birth of a great musical group — it was on its stage that the first performances of The Beatles took place. The current “Cavern” is indirectly related to the original club, which was demolished and covered with soil for the construction of the metro.
The modern remake is located in a different place, but is made of bricks from the same Beatles Cavern. The interiors have been completely restored according to the surviving photographs. In the evenings, the band’s covers are played here, and on January 16, the birthday of the club and The Beatles is celebrated.
Places for walking
The most important city park was opened in 1872 in the south of Liverpool. Its area is about 1 sq. km. Almost the entire space is occupied by a picturesque lake, where the townspeople come to feed the ducks and go boating. For outdoor enthusiasts, cricket lawns are broken. Another popular place in the park is a 200-year-old artificial cave with a waterfall.
The main architectural attraction is the Palm House. The glass greenhouse was erected in 1896 and is still used for its intended purpose. Palm trees and other heat-loving plants grow inside. The surroundings of the pavilion are complemented by statues and benches for relaxation.
This small street is filled with tourists from morning to night. Matthew Street gained such popularity thanks to The Beatles and the Cavern club, which is located here. There are dozens of bars, chamber restaurants and clubs stylized as the 60s, one way or another, exploiting the achievements of the eminent four.
Every summer, the LIMF (Liverpool Mathew Street Music Festival) is held here. Performances of bands and artists take place right under the open sky.