William Henry Street c1895

William Brown Street c1895

I was going to write about the new Museum of Liverpool but my two attempts to walk round have both been aborted after less than 20 minutes each due to the amazing number of people visiting. With the outside temperature in the mid 20s, it wasn’t the time to make any critical analysis, so I will wait until September when I expect it will get much quieter. My initial impression is that too much space has been allocated to the entrance/atrium, which has created congested gallery space, but I need to see how the exhibitions work without such a volume of people. The very positive note is that over 100,000 people have been through already – an encouraging sign of the level of interest in Liverpool’s history.
Today’s posts reflect the darker side of that history. Child poverty has never been eradicated from Liverpool and these photographs of barefooted boys are a reminder of how tough life was a century ago. The first photograph is, I am reasonably certain, of William Henry Street. Blackledge & Sons had a small chain of bakers shops and this one seems to be the most likely location (on the corner of Canterbury Street). (The only other possibility could be Great Crosshall Street). I am not sure what the boy of the left is carrying – maybe a bunch of flowers for his mum.
The second photograph is of Bentley’s bookshop in Shaw’s Brow/William Brown Street (on the site of where the Technical School – now part of Liverpool Museum – was built a few years later).

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