Qantas Magazine, November 2016
Back in the early 1980s, the playwright Alan Bleasdale was looking for an image to convey the utter misery of unemployment-blighted Liverpool for his seminal drama series, Boys from the Blackstuff. He settled on the city’s abandoned and derelict Albert Dock. In the final episode, a wheelchair-bound character, George, surveys the silt-clogged dock and the smashed windows of its abandoned warehouses and, after thinking of his and his city’s finer past, dies there. It just might be the most miserable scene in British TV history.
Well, you should see that place now. Today, the Albert Dock represents the revival from the most blighted of European cities to a thriving, buzzing tourist hub where Beatles pilgrims rub shoulders with football fans, students and cruise liner passengers.
Read more at http://travelinsider.qantas.com.au
This is my home town, so let me show you what I can see from here, facing towards the city with my back to the River Mersey. Over to the left, there’s enough proud history and art to make a scholar blush: the Merseyside Maritime Museum (one of the world’s best), the Liverpool Tate Gallery, the new Museum of Liverpool. Just beyond them are the beautiful Three Graces buildings at the Pier Head, topped by the Liver Birds that have been the city’s icons for more than a century; in front of them, the Ferry Cross the Mersey – with that infernal Gerry Marsden song playing relentlessly – is docking from Birkenhead.