The Art and Culture of Liverpool
Our first stop was Sudbury Hall in Derbyish. A 17th century family home with richly decorated interiors including woodcarvings by Grinling Gibbons. This National Trust property also houses a Museum of Childhood – so there was plenty to see as well has having lunch.
It was then on to Liverpool and the Radisson Blu Hotel.
Early the next morning we were joined by our Blue Badge Guide. We enjoyed a tour of Liverpool by coach, before visiting both the Anglican and Roman Catholic cathedrals. In both our guide gave us a guided tour. They were very different but both interesting.
The Anglican one very classical and the Catholic one modern, colourful and light.
It is affectionately called Paddy’s Wigwam by Liverpudlians because of its shape.
The afternoon was spent in the Walker Art Gallery. After a tour to see some of the most important pictures we had time either to explore more of the gallery on our own or pop next door to the library. Great to see how well use the library was with a modern section and the Rotunda still in its Victorian Splendour. We were also able to see John Audubon’s Birds of America. The book contains 435 life-sized watercolours of North American birds. It is a glass case and staff turn a page every day to preserve it and allow visitors to see different paintings.
Day three started with a cruise on the Mersey. There was an extremely cold wind blowing but we mostly managed to find places to stand to keep out of the wind, while enjoying the sights. The waterfront, now a world heritage site, was full of interest.
A highlight was seeing Royal Liver building, one of the most recognisable landmarks in the city of Liverpool and home to the two fabled Liver birds that watch over the city and the sea.
This was followed by a guided tour of Tate Modern. After that we had the rest of the day free to export in our own. Tate Modern is in the Albert Dock area, but it was so cold that most only spent a short time outside. Many of us went into the Maritime Museum. There was a wonderful selection of displays including exhibitions about slavery right up to the present (an obvious link with Liverpool’s past) and smuggling and revenue collecting. There was also a Titanic Exhibition – the Titanic was a Liverpool ship as White Star Line’s head office was there and many of the crew came from Liverpool and about the Merchant navy in the war and include the sinking of the Lusitania.
On the forth day we visited Port Sunlight and the Lady Lever Art Gallery. A wonderful gallery, full of the most amazing things. it included collections of Wedgwood, Chinese porcelain and commodes.
In the afternoon we had a complete change and visited Speke Hall, a rare Tudor timbered manor house built in the1530s by the Norris Family keen to impress visitors. The Hall has a magnificent Great Hall, a courtyard and a priest hole and interesting grounds.
On our last day after checking out of the hotel we drove to Manchester to visit the Lowry Art Gallery, which is in Salford Keys. We had a very informative guided tour and time to explore on our own before setting off for home.
It was a very interesting tour with lots of different aspects. It was pity the weather was so cold as it prevented most going out and about exploring areas of Liverpool and Salford Keys. The tour was organised by Tailored Travel. Our thanks go to Michelle Robinson for all her hard work and organising a most enjoyable tour.