30 May 2013

Live it: Liverpool


Last weekend I found myself in Liverpool for a hen party, but I'm not going to tell you about that part as what goes on the hen party, stays on the hen party.  It's not a city I have explored much I must admit, I have been there once before on a day trip and so this was a good excuse to go for a wander whilst I waited for the train I had booked on.  One of the great things about booking on trains is that its cheaper if you get on a certain one, but sometimes it can mean a bit of a wait.  On this occasion it turned out to be a great idea and a lovely day to explore as the weather was brilliant, hardly a cloud in the sky!

I thought I would go down to the docks as I had been to the Tate before and so thought as it is the 25th anniversary it would be worth a look.  It turned out that the Mersey River Festival was on and so it was VERY busy! But that did mean I got to see a fly past, some people singing in the street and lots of boats.

Undeterred, I thought I would check out the Museum of Liverpool instead as I definitely hadn't done that, and being as I love a good museum, I thought it would tick my culture box for the weekend.

On the way I saw a lady doing some stitching and so went to check it out.  She was adding French knots to a scarf as a piece of art and was asking people to have a go, well, who was I to say no.  So I had a go and my work will be on this artwork forever, how cool.

Anyway, back to my wander, and I made it to the Museum of Liverpool which was busy, but as it was such a nice day I guess it wasn't as bad as it could have been, it was also free!  yey.

I thought I would start from the top and walked up this amazing curved staircase, 84 steps apparently, to the third floor.  Then there were different sections to go into, some about popular culture - Beatles anyone! and also boxing and football.  They had these really cool coloured pods above you which had images projected inside which made the tall space feel less voluminous. 

Then you could wind down the stairs and learn more about the Romans and Medieval history etc and I saw they have 3 education spaces, which for me as an education worker was fascinating!  Lots of space to do different things and break-out spaces for the kids to learn.  I am imagining they have more staff then my little museum though, but it is a bigger museum overall so I guess that would be fair.  On the ground floor you learnt more about the industry and heritage of Liverpool, from the factories to the docks themselves - which gives this city its diverse history.

Also I managed to find out what the Superlamabananas were all about.  These different coloured and designed creatures are all around Liverpool and I guess they are a similar idea to the Elephant Family which was around London a few years ago.  There is a huge one in the city centre and then smaller ones dotted around.  The main Superlamabana was designed by the artist Taro Chiezo but was only 4ft tall, the full-size 17ft replica was made by four local artists: Andy Small, Julian Taylor, Tommy Reason and Ray Stokes and all the others (125 in all) were decorated by local communities/artists for the 2008 European Capital of Culture.  Such a good way to get people interested in and involved in Public art and make it fun too!

It was a really interesting museum and there were pockets of space where there was works of art from local artists, which is always nice to see in a museum of this size.  I also found the note above which had been pinned to a feedback wall - I love it!  There was of course the obligatory cafe and shop too, so a little peruse around the shop before I headed back out into the sunshine.

I did then fully intend to make my way over to the Tate, but it was so busy, they were stopping people going over the bridge over to the area at the time I went and so I thought I would take a wander into the city centre instead as I needed to have a little look to buy some shoes for the wedding that is coming up and so I thought it might be a good place to look.  As it turned out, it was and I found a little pair of flats to go with my outfit, oh yes and a cheeky pair of sandals too!

It was a brief but really interesting couple of hours to explore the city.  Where would you go if you had a couple of hours to explore?

H

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