Tagged: Railways

Watching Michael Portillo’s programme Great British Railway Journeys, it struck me how often it is outsiders who make the most of Liverpool’s heritage. In this instance, Portillo was enthusing about the unique place Lime Street Station held in the history of the railway. His first impression – the magnificent canyon cut out of rock as you approach the station – was exactly the same as mine on my first visit to Liverpool in 1965. He marvelled at the station – but was somewhat bemused at the statues of Ken Dodd and Bessie Braddock. I too am puzzled. With no disrespect to either local personality, why isn’t British Rail shouting from the rooftops that this is where the greatest transport revolution in history started. Thousands of strangers arrive at Lime Street each year – and most will not have a clue who Ken Dodd or Bessie Braddock are – but they would certainly appreciate the fact that they are standing in one of the oldest working railway stations in the world (I suppose Crown Street comes first). So why not something eye-catching to celebrate our great claim to fame instead of a couple of, for me, dull statues that have little to do with the great age of steam that transformed the world.