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Liverpool Metro Area 'Scouse Scrapers for both sides of the Mersey



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Old June 26th, 2006, 01:43 AM   #1
Martin S
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Liverpool - three decades ago.

It's only recently that I've done a lot of photography in central Liverpool. However, back in November 1976, I took about 70 photos in one day on a walk around town. I thought it might be interesting to share these to show what has changed and what has remained the same:

Apologies for the quality. These images were made by photographing the projected slide image so quality has suffered:

Liverpool University precinct:


Victoria Building, where my mum worked in the early 60s:


I was very proud of this view of the Metropolitan Cathedral, which was less than ten years old when this picture was taken:


Hope Street. Cars may have changed but not much else:


View from Pembroke Place, the car park in the foreground is where the bio-sciences building is now, I think:


Abercromby Square:


The cladding to the Metropolitan Cathedral seems to have been causing problems even back then:


The Anglican Cathedral hasn't changed much but note the crane jib in the background:


View from the front of the Anglican Cathedral, where the apartment buildings have since been built:


Work underway on the final bay of the knave, using that ancient derrick crane that was a landmark of Liverpool for decades:


View over the site of the steps and piazza to the Metropolitan Cathedral. The buildings in the foreground, now demolished, were in use then as laboratories for the university but then became the Merseyside Innovation Centre:


St. Lukes Church. Only recently cleaned up in that photo. The cleaning of a war ruin was quite controversial at the time:


The new 051 building, showing the advertising that it originally featured:


The Kumar Brothers store was then the Army and Navy and St Johns Beacon was still in use as a restaurant and observation tower:


Central Hall was also still in use as a Methodist meeting hall:


St Johns Precinct as originally intended. Owen Owens (now Tesco Metro) and the ABC cinema still in use (showing Electra Glide in Blue):


The classic view of St Georges Hall with Liverpool buses in the old livery and work going ahead on the ticket hall for Lime Street underground station:


View down St Johns Lane with no Marriott hotel but the Stork in Queen Square still standing:


The Mersey Tunnel entrance with the unsightly information signs over the entrance:


Roe Street with the new pedestrian footbridge and bus shelters. The bridge was intended to give access to the Civic and Social Centre that was never built:


Williamson Square with the new Merseytravel offices on the left and the start of the bridges over the gyratory. I forgot that the Playhouse was ever that colour:


View down Cases Street to St Johns Beacon. This is now the Clayton Square shopping precinct:


Church Street. Probably only recently pedestrianised there and the paving still to be laid:


Bluecoat Chambers:


View along the Strand. I'm not sure what that construction site is in the foreground. Possibly for the tax offices to the rear of Graeme House:


Canning Place, where I worked in the mid 70s. The fire station is all that remains today:


Chavasse Park under construction and flanked by Canning Place, the Moat House and the Paradise Street bus station, all now gone:


Wilberforce House, then the headquarters of the city planners and now Beetham Plaza:


Pier Head with the River Room and bus station built in the late 60s.


Not too good a photo but it does show the paving of the Pier Head that was constructed following the removal of the old bus and tram terminals:


Mersey Ferry Overchurch sporting the green Merseyside Passenger Transport Executive funnel and Royal Iris tied up at the Pier Head:


The cricket stump chimneys of Clarence Dock power station, long a landmark of the Central Docks:


The South Docks close in 1972 but this shows the still derelict Albert Dock, the Kings Dock complete with transit sheds and cranes and the Brunswick Dock grain elevator:


Pier Head. The derrick crane in front of the cathedral is working on the Mann Island construction shaft of the Merseyrail loop line:


The skyline as it was in 1976 and wasn't to change for a quarter of a century with the construction of Beetham Tower:


The newly completed sandcastle and the Atantic Tower Hotel:


Exchange Flags:


Castle Street with the view all the way down to Canning Place but South Castle Street now gone to make way for Chavasse Park:


Derby Square, still in use as a bus terminal. Whatever happened to Crosville buses? Note the old MPTE logo on the bus.



Hope you enjoyed this tour of the Liverpool of yesteryear. I might take some new photos from the same locations to show how much things have changed since those days.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 02:54 AM   #2
maggie
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liverpool looks like it was far more attractive in the 70s than it is today.. though thankfully things are catching up fast.. even if that does mean inconveiniences in the short term.. its great to see what liverpool looked like almost a decade before i was born
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Old June 26th, 2006, 03:01 AM   #3
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Lost and growing and be thankfull for it ......

Viva Viva Viva Liverpool ......
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Business & leisure...
Projected investment of £Bns+
www.liverpoolwaters.co.uk
http://www.wirralwaters.com/
1,000s of maitime companies employ 10s of 1,000s of staff with an annual turnover of £2.5bns+ / 15% of the Merseyside economy. The Super Port of Liverpool is expanding & with 150,000 ship movements a year, the River Mersey is the UK’s 3rd busiest estuary.
http://www.shipais.com/index.php
The Merseyrail network runs 700 services a day, the most intense of any in the UK apart from London Underground.
http://visitliverpool.com/

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Old June 26th, 2006, 07:49 AM   #4
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Brilliant Martin (PS - I sent u a pm yesterday)
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Old June 26th, 2006, 10:34 AM   #5
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That really is a stunning collection of pictures
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Old June 26th, 2006, 10:48 AM   #6
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Martin, that's a tremendous collection of photos. Thank you so much for posting them. I love the quality of them, the colours, the scenes depicted of course - brilliant.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 11:02 AM   #7
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What absolutely fantastic pics! Looks so deliciously 70s ish. You can still feel the optimism of the new buildings, and the bright future they represented.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 11:24 AM   #8
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They're fantastic Martin. I'd forgotten how St. John's looked before the refurb. I do remember the sloping stairs that used to run alongside Parker Street (that's the one that ran past Owen Owen isn't it?), before Clayton Square was built.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 11:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjwmoore
What absolutely fantastic pics! Looks so deliciously 70s ish. You can still feel the optimism of the new buildings, and the bright future they represented.
These photos were taken the year before I was born!
Some things really struck me; the 'bubble' gyratory in Roe Street. It looks so spankingly new and clean. My memory of it is as a litter-strewn, chewing-gum barnacled, dirty monstrosity. I remember the 4 outbound lanes were more than adequate for traffic, all that was lacking was an adequate street-level crossing, as the bridges were horrible.
Also, the terminal at the Pier Head. I remember it as being the dirtiest, dankest place in town (I loved it all the same), but in Martin's photos you can see what was envisaged.
As my grandad would often say "They don't build slums, people make them".
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Old June 26th, 2006, 01:01 PM   #10
Tony Sebo
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The Pierhead used to be fantastic. When they first opened it, it was all shiny and futuristic. Its bones where good enough to still look sleek if it had been looked after... though like your grandad says it is people... in this case the civic authorities.

Glass and aliminium, a roof promenade, lots of shops, full of bums but really safe at 5.30a.m... brilliant place.


Best was all the old seadogs or their widows coming don to feed the seagulls and watch the world go by of a sunday!

OUR river.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 01:30 PM   #11
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brilliant set of pics there, the 'poor' quality actually adds to their history, lol.. some of them look like the promotional postcards you get of our towns and that from the late Victorian years.. And with some of the views, albeit the traffic, you could say those pictures were from anytime from 1900-1980..

Like you said on the skyline pic, it stayed like that for 25 odd years, It really is odd how our cities all had this near-dormant era to then erupt with new buildings... was it all fate? or planned? lol...
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Old June 26th, 2006, 07:51 PM   #12
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Owen Owen, Atlantean buses, Vauxhall Viva (I used to have a white one of them, went camping in France in it) only seems like yesterday!! brilliant, thanks Martin for posting these pics.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 08:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferge
It really is odd how our cities all had this near-dormant era to then erupt with new buildings... was it all fate? or planned? lol...
It's amazing how little has actually changed since those photographs were taken. The economic slump of the 70s/80s is an obvious factor as to why development ground to a halt.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 08:07 PM   #14
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Great pictures Martin ,brings back many memories from my childhood.

The pierhead was really interesting for a kid am I right in thinking there was subways to connect the waiting areas.

Doesnt the beacon look better now with the extra floor I used to look up at it from the top deck of a bus going down Parker St before Church St was fully pedestrianised and if white fluffy clouds were moving in the sky it looked like the 'Tower Restaurant' was falling on the bus.

City scrubbed up quite well for the 70's however horrible to see a derelict Albert Dock and the walkways above roe st were awful.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 08:26 PM   #15
Martin S
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I don't remember subways at the Pier Head but I wouldn't have been surprised if they had been there.

That Pier Head bus terminal was built in the late 60s and really relied on the construction of the inner motorway with its elevated viaducts. When it was decided to do away with the viaducts and have the traffic at ground level, it became a liability as buses had to cross over the Strand to get to the bus station. Paradise Street bus station removed this conflict and the Pier Head was closed.

By the way, the bus terminal was not that marvellous, although it did look good from the outside. The high level observatorys got taken over by vagrants and the River Room restaurant used to complain about the smell. It was also a centre for gangs of youths even in those days and police dog patrols had to be used at night.

Its interesting, given my enthusiasm for developments, that, apart from the Merseyrail loop and link and the ongoing work on the Anglican Cathedral, there was not one major development in progress at the time.

The major changes since then have been in Queen Square and Paradise Street and to the skyline, and I don't think those have been for the worse.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 10:06 PM   #16
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really really interesting cheers
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Old June 26th, 2006, 10:36 PM   #17
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As has been noted by someone else, and apologies for forgetting who, the disgraceful New World Square proposals are just like a scaled-up version of the hideous old development on Canning Place, pictured above.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 10:40 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maggie
liverpool looks like it was far more attractive in the 70s than it is today.. though thankfully things are catching up fast.. even if that does mean inconveiniences in the short term.. its great to see what liverpool looked like almost a decade before i was born
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Old June 26th, 2006, 10:49 PM   #19
Martin S
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Quote:
Originally Posted by liverpolitan
As has been noted by someone else, and apologies for forgetting who, the disgraceful New World Square proposals are just like a scaled-up version of the hideous old development on Canning Place, pictured above.
Canning Place had some quite slick modern office buildings but it was compromised to the extent that it had the first floor access arrangement for fitting in with the city walkway system. Apparently it also had structural problems.

It was the first and only part ever built of the Strand / Paradise development which was intended to have five blocks of high rise apartments to the back of James and Lord Streets with retail in the lower sections. The oversize ground floor columns of Canning Place were intended to reflect those of the towers.
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Old June 27th, 2006, 01:47 AM   #20
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Fantastic pictures Martin and a fantastic thread. I've got this memory from around the late eighties of a toy / sports / bike shop being under a fly-over or an over-pass or something. Me and friend 'sagged' off school one day (I know it's not big and it's not clever) but nevertheless we did and hung about in there for what seemed hours. Does anybody know what the hell I am talking about, maybe it never existed and I'm talking bollocks? Could have been by Roe street or back Old Hey Market, then again it mightn't of!
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