The Masonic also used as a Mortuary

The Masonic on Lark Lane, also used as a Mortuary

After recently posting about the ‘Albert’s’ past use as a temporary mortuary, I thought I would look at Lark Lane’s other old pub ‘The Masonic’ (now ‘The Lodge’). Toxteth Park was in a desperate situation, its population was increasing rapidly but they had no mortuary. Numerous dead bodies were washed up on St. Michael’s shore (also known as ‘The Cast Iron Shore’), with nowhere else to take them, hotels were used. The Masonic Hotel was also used in the same capacity:

masonic Liverpool Mercury - Tuesday 07 August 1888
The body of a 16 year old boy found on St Michael’s shore and his body kept in The Masonic Hotel.
Liverpool Mercury – Tuesday 07 August 1888
Courtesy of British Newspaper Archive ©

“The foreman of the jury expressed his surprise that through the want of a mortuary it became necessary to bring decomposed bodies to a public house”

Masonic Liverpool Mercury - Thursday 09 August 1888
Two days later and the body of the boy is now identified as Gerald Wheelan of Shadwell Street.
The article also calls for the Jury to be paid a small allowance – to emulate their Garston friends who received 2s. 6d. each.
Liverpool Mercury – Thursday 09 August 1888
Courtesy of British Newspaper Archive ©

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55 comments on “The Masonic also used as a Mortuary

  1. Ross Walsh says:

    Hi Glen. Delighted with the updates on the site. Aigburth Old Hall has come as a revelation. Saving that page for later today when I’ve more time. Just on the subject of mortuaries in Lark Lane, did you know the Old Fire Station in Little Parkfield Rd was originally a mounted police and ambulance station. It had a small mortuary within the courtyard, still there as far as I can make out but now part of the building. The police in the city had their own ambulance, horse drawn then motor, up until the establishment of the NHS in 1948, used to transport bodies found anywhere in public. Naturally there would have been a need for somewhere to put them while enquiries were made and the little mortuary probably came about when the unsuitability of taking bodies to pubs was highlighted.
    I spent 25 years in Merseyside ambulance service and when I began there, there was still a man serving who had originally driven the police ambulance when it was based in Duke St. The fire station in Little Parkfield eventually passed to the Auxillary Fire Service but was no longer in use when I was growing up in the Lane in the 50s. But if you looked through the crack in the double doors, now bricked up, you could see the horse drawn fire engine that later finished up in the museum in William Brown St.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hello Ross
      I’m glad you are enjoying the blog, it’s good to hear from you again.
      It was really great to get that picture of Old Hall sent to me as the comment part of the the blog has been really rewarding with positive input and relatives of the subjects of the posts getting in touch.
      I didn’t know that about Little Parkfield, I’ll have to pay a visit, I always liked that park of Lark Lane as the little backstreets has a real village feel to it. I used to spend a bit of time there as a child as I worked for Hoggs Dairy from the age of 12 to 16.
      You mentioning seeing the engine through the crack in the doors reminded me of how inquisitive we were as children and it just shows that never goes away.

  2. Ross Walsh says:

    Hi Glen

    Yes, the picture of the Old Hall was a coup. I’ve never heard any mention of it until I spotted it on Facebook. The link has just winged it’s way to the other side of the world where my sister, another Lark Lane-ite will be fascinated to read of it.
    There is a mention on the old Mersey Times site of the body of a young woman found in Sefton Park lake and conveyed to Lark Lane mortuary in 1914. I think the fire station was set up as part of the system where the police and the firemen were interchangeable and I guess it predates Lark Lane police station. The phrase ‘fire bobby’ was still in use when I was small but not heard these days. There is a similar little fire station in Kildonan Rd at the Vale, in use until the post war years when it then became a builders merchants.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      Good info there, i used to live in the Vale so I’ll have to have a look next time I go to Steve’s chippy!
      You probably help me with a fire station query! I now live in Garston and use Cressington Station everyday. When you first enter Cressington Park there is a large painted sign on the wall that reads Fire Station with an arrow pointing left. I have had a look for likely buildings
      so far i haven’t found it. Any ideas?

      • Ross Walsh says:

        Yes, it’s directly behind Steve’s. Still pretty intact. I’ve never noticed that sign on the few occasions I’ve been in Cressington Park Glen. Most likely a temporary station, one of 132 set up during the Blitz and manned by the Auxillary or National Fire Service. The next station along from the Vale would have been Heald St. so this would have been to bridge the gap between them and have an appliance or two ready to respond quickly during a raid. Only needed a room with a telephone, a few chairs and somewhere to boil a kettle,with the appliance in the road outside. Good bit on it here:
        http://www.merseyfire.gov.uk/historical/AFS1938-1941.htm

      • Glen Huntley says:

        Hi Ross
        I’ll take a pic this week on my way to the train (I’ll pick a day when I’m not running to catch it!)
        Great info, thanks

      • Glen Huntley says:

        Hi Ross
        Here is a link to a photo of the Fire Station sign in Cressington Park, It is a soon as you enter the park next to St Mary’s Church:

        http://i1302.photobucket.com/albums/ag126/GlenHuntley/FireStationSignCressington_zpsd319c839.jpg

        When I first saw it I thought that it was really old as the pavement is much higher but then I noticed the modern sign for Knowsley Road is also obscured by the pavement level.
        I wondered that as it is a private park if it had a private Fire Service? I’ve had a quick look in the past for possible candidates in Salisbury Road for the Fire Station but I’m usually being dragged to the river by my dog!
        Great info about the Fire Brigades and Lark Lane by the way as always, thanks.

  3. ross walsh says:

    No, never spotted that sign before Glen. But it looks very much like all the wartime signage. Light letters on a black background, so it could be easily spotted during the blackout without illumination. I had a look in the Kellys/Gores directory for 1900, and in the latest one I’ve access to – 1938 – but there’s no mention of anything that might fit. So I’m guessing it was just an emergency Blitz station. There might well have been some requirement to allow rescue parties access onto the railway in the event a train was hit, and that’s why it was located there.
    My parent’s house opposite the TA barracks was a dentists during the 30s/40s and during the war it was used as the ARP station for the area. I was talking to an old chap from Eastfield Drive some years ago and he’d actually done ARP duties in there during the bombing. They used to sleep on the chairs in the waiting room. He was on duty the night a stick of bombs hit both the Hamlet church and Siddeley Street. About seven houses were hit and ten people killed I think. Some were flung onto the roofs in Hargreaves Rd. I have a photo somewhere of the damage but I don’t know how to attach it. The new houses in the street were built to replace those destroyed. I think the same stick did some damage to the Palm House.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      You should do your own blog, great information!

      My mum lived in the Wavertree and Toxteth area during the war and had to move three times because of bomb damage to their homes.
      As a child she once left the air raid shelter in Wavertree during a bombing raid to chase after her dog that had ran out of the shelter into the streets, only to be screamed at by a warden to get back to cover!

      She has always said that the media kept the true damage done to Liverpool a secret so it didn’t ruin morale for the rest of the country, with Liverpool being the main port of supplies. Liverpool is so still often left out in blitz histories of WW2 still.

      Do you know anything of the anti-aircraft batteries opposite your parents house? I contacted the barracks but they were not much help. There is some info on the St Charles website but that’s it.
      The gun placements were one of our favourite playgrounds as kids. We used to find loads of glass disks that must have been from gas masks. You couldn’t really explore the concrete bunkers though as they were always flooded to my memory.

  4. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen Yes, I have a head full of bits of information about the area. Glad to be able to stick them somewhere at last! I was always so irritated by the “Spirit of the Blitz” tales I came across – with barely a mention of what had happened here – that I did a Wikipedia page on it with a few basic facts that point out the discrepancy. Amongst others, I dug up from The Times the fact that the heaviest raid ever launched on Britain during the entire war by the Luftwaffe was the one on Liverpool on 5th May 1941.

    ” The Blitz” by Juliet Gardner published a couple of years ago is a classic example. Coventry, which lost a cathedral and a hundred people, gets a couple of chapters. Liverpool, whose losses in housing and lives dwarfed everywhere bar London, is dismissed in a page or two.
    Never found much on the anti aircraft defences of the city. The odd mention of the different artillery batteries that took turns manning them and a few personal reminiscences are all I could find. There’ll be plenty off official records in the PRO at Kew I guess.
    http://www.anti-aircraft.co.uk/HAA_gun_sites_map.html

    Yes, great fun playing in the old AA emplacements. Just a grassy field covered in bell tents in the 30s on an aerial photo I saw a couple of years ago. All the wooden huts were still there in the 50s . Much more in use then though with radar locating trailers parked there. Snooping kids were regularly chased. And at the bottom of Tramway Rd was the big barracks in what had been the tramway stables. There were regular soldiers there then, permanent staff for the TA units, and a married quarters block – like the ones still on Aigburth Rd – down there too. Did you know Galbraith Close next to Kwikfit was originally Battery Close?.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      Isn’t that a coincidence, I mention something my Mum used to say and you’ve written a Wikipedia page about it! I’ll have a good read of it, thanks.

      Regarding sending images in Comments, you can’t send images direct but you give a link to an image that has been uploading to an image hosting site (like Darren’s) http://www.photobucket.com. It’s free and I have started to use it to send the link for the Fire Station pic. Once uploaded you just copy and paste the link into the comment.

      I remember asking someone who lived in the terraced streets of Kensington why some streets have more modern houses amongst the Victorian/Edwardian terraces.
      He said these were referred to as “Police Houses” and if you looked at the positions in the rows of terraces they showed that they were the result of a bombing run by the Luftwaffe. I have never checked this out but it makes sense.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      Looking at the aerial photo of the AA site again, you can really see the path of Dickenson’s Dingle as a dark shadow it takes the right a hand turn to the Mersey. Can I add this to the post please if I credit yourself?

  5. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen I’d forgotten all about Photobucket.


    Hope these work
    The bomb damage in Siddeley St knocked out four houses and
    damaged one so badly it had to be demolished. You can see it still standing at the left before it went. The second picture shows the scene today. Little wonder nobody survived. .
    If you look at the junction of Fernwood Rd and Birchtree Rd on Streetview you’ll see the same mix of brand new houses mixed in with the old. Just Corpie homes though, not police housing. That was the result of a parachute mine, a massive thing like a pillar box that floated down and just sat there till it decided to go off. The Germans were thought to be trying to hit Mossley Hill Hospital, which was a military one then.

  6. ross walsh says:

    Were the full pictures supposed to appear on the page Glen, or just the link. Not sure what I did. I don’t want to take up a lot of room on the site.

  7. ross walsh says:

    Last two for the night. I don’t know if you knew the bottom of the Lane before the Joe Gibbons centre was built Glen but there was what we called The Plantation. It was an ornamental garden railed off and somewhere for Lane-ites to take a stroll on a summer’s evening. The railings went for salvage during the war and that was the end of it really. A couple of generations of kids wore all the grass away playing football. In the 60s you could still see the gravel paths that wound around where the flower beds had been.
    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/lark-lane-aigburth.jpg.html

    The tram terminus at the bottom of the Lane. There was an ornate sandstone waiting room just out of shot to the right. You can just see the retaining wall for the original public toilets there.
    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/larklanesepia.jpg.html

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Is that the health centre? I was born in 64 and one of my first ever memories is playing in a sand pit when my mum visited it. Joseph Gibbons? I’ve not come across the name, can you enlighten me? Again, great photos I’ve not seen before. Thanks.

  8. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen

    Joseph Gibbons – it was actually Gibbins but always spelt wrong, even on the sign for the health centre when it opened – was a Labour MP for West Toxteth in the 1920s and a significant figure in Liverpool politics for most of his life. In later life he lived in Hargreaves Road, last house on the right. Chiefly remembered by Lark Lane kids for him chasing them out of his front garden with a stick if they ventured into it. Died in the mid 60s.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      I don’t know if you are aware but Darren White has also been commenting on the site recently and has given some great info. He has also located part of Barn Hey on one of your photographs of Aigburth Road. His comments are under the Dickensens Dingle post. The feedback has been excellent recently, I’m really enjoying it.

  9. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen Just one more of Siddeley St. The date on it is 1955 but I think it must be five or six years later than that, as the newer buildings on the right that replaced the bombed ones would only have been completed around 1952. At the top of the street you can see the Aigburth Laundry that was there till the late 60s.

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/siddeleyst1955.jpg.html

    Got this off Ebay for a quid. Found in the lining of a drawer in Southport.

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/9dfb_1.jpg.html

    • Glen Huntley says:

      The Dingle Lane and Aigburth Laundry pics are superb and really evoke two different eras. Thanks for sharing these! brilliant. I have been trying to find where Robert Griffiths lived in census documents and I think it is 104 Aigburth Road. He should have a plaque. Campaign anyone?

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      I thought I would share some of my fond memories of Lark Lane.
      Do you remember the antique shop that was possibly where the upholstery shop is now? As a child I used to spend hours in there, never had any money to buy a anything though but loved browsing all of the cabinets.
      The open fronted fish mongers?
      Buying fuel from the chandlers in the power cuts in the 70s?
      Tasting my first pint (aged 15) in 1979 in Keiths.
      Arthur Hicklands scooter shop – I had a 60s Lambretta in the early 80s and Hicklands was the place to find original spares. Also later, visiting the motor museum.

      Lark Lane is unique, I can’t think of any other area in Liverpool that has the same character or cultural importance. Growing up in the 70s and 80s, Liverpool could be a grim place but Lark Lane was an oasis.
      The thing about the lane is that it leads to one of the best parks in the country so approaching it from Aigburth Road, it saves the best till last.
      Thankfully its character still remains, we are lucky to have grown up in such a great area and its great to see how many others share the same view.

  10. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen I’d echo your views on Lark Lane. So glad I was brought up there in the 50s rather than somewhere in town. Just having the park right on your doorstep was worth so much. My older brother has much clearer memories of it than I do, growing up there in the 40s before me. It really was a little community on it’s own, with everything you needed around you..

    I can’t remember the upholstery shop as an antique shop. It was Miss Mare’s when I was a child – she of the smelly cat – and I just can’t think of what it became when she died. Harrisons for paraffin and The Pet Shop – where the Balti House is now – for coal bricks and dog food. Hazels – now PRM – for sliced meats, cheese, biscuits. Miss Pearsons, Stansfields or Rigbys for sweets or cigarettes. Doctor Macken’s surgery. I had a paper round in Heppenstalls next to the electricity substation. Hicklings was still the stables with horses being taken up to the Jockey Sands for exercise. Paul the Barber’s was originally Hiram Crewe, harness maker and shoe repairer. I still have a dog harness he made for a massive alsation my parents owned in the 40s. What became the motor museum was originally the garage for S & R Smythes, removals and storage, with their office at 94 Aigburth Rd. They had about six HGV removal vans in there. I was a driver for them for a bit in the 70s on the London run. Putting the vans away on a Friday was a nightmare due to their size and the width of Hesketh St and the little shop that stood opposite the gate then got a few smacks during the process.

    The Lane is a long way from those days now but it still has the atmosphere of a village about it.

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/larklane3.jpg.html

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      I don’t know if you have been following the comments with Darren on the “Dickenson’s Dingle” post but if you have a minute take a look at the BrookHouse comments as I think you may be able to help!
      I am planning to do a post on the history of the pub and came across a request from someone who’s family lived there in WW2. He was asking for information about an unexploded bomb in the grounds there and I instantly thought of yourself.

      If you are interested have a look at the comments and if you find anything and fancy helping with the post my email is thecastironshore@gmail.com.

      It may involve a field trip!

      Cheers

    • Lisa says:

      I know it’s a while since your comments were made but the mention of Doctor Macken’s surgery in Latk Lane brought a smile to me. I spent my childhood years behind the scenes there and in and around Lark Lane as he was my grandfather.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Great photo, very moody.
      Is that a baby in a pram left outside the house on the right? Maybe the mother was scrubbing the steps and popped inside. I never understood the obsession with scrubbing steps, my Mum used to do it all the time and took ages too with a brush, Vim and about ten buckets of water. The aim I think (and some women succeeded) was to wear out the step to a concave shape. Maybe it was just an excuse to have a “Gab” with your neighbours! There was a woman in our area we used to call “Gabby” because every time you left the house you’d see her talking to someone and always holding a pint of milk.

  11. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen Yes, I remember the steps being scrubbed with what was called a ‘bath brick’ then rinsed off. Then when dry it was whitened with some stuff. Naturally the first person to step on it ruined the effect. But that it was done was the important thing. Strange that the ritual disappeared within a generation.

    The shop on the corner of Little Parkfield Rd next to Hoggs was MacFarlanes bike shop when I was little. The side window had a fantastic display of Dinky toys and there were always kids grouped around it. He did a big trade in accumulators for radio sets, which needed charging.

    A good few of those houses on the left in Darren’s Hesketh St picture are still there but the two closes on the right further down went in the 70s. There were a couple of houses at the bottom on the left which, unless I’m mistaken were four rooms, one on top of the other with the kitchen at the bottom. Just past them was a big gate in the wall leading to the back garden of one of the big houses in Livingston Dr. One of the two closes, Princes View I think, achieved notoriety when a woman living there in the 1920s formed a liaison with a man she met in the park. Desperately unhappy she killed her two young sons with a straight razor in the house then tried to kill herself but failed. She was found not fit to plead.

    I had a picture of the TA barracks taken in the 1930s which showed the anti aircraft gun site before there was anything built there. Just rows of bell tents for the annual TA camp I guess. Think it’s on an old drive somewhere. This one was probably taken post war as the guns seem to have gone. You can see the wooden huts to the left and the bottom of Tramway Road where the TA took over the old horse tram buildings, which were still up in 1970. Just out of shot as you go to the left along Aigburth Rd is the original St Charles Infants in South Grange at the top of Tramway. You can just see the girls playground which was behind it
    .
    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/aigburthAAAsite.jpg.html

  12. Glen Huntley says:

    Hi Ross
    Brilliant photo! I’ll have to have a zoom in.
    I’ve just remembered you attended South Grange didn’t you, as did my sister.

  13. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen Not sure where to put this as it has nothing to do with the Cast Iron Shore, Aigburth or Dingle. I’m sure you’d find it interesting. If you can remember Canning Place as it was when Steers House was there, there were lots of little side streets and alleys running off it. During the Blitz, the area was heavily pounded and much of South Castle St, South John St and the Customs House was destroyed. Unbelievably this little street survived and actually lasted until the late 60s. Ogdens Weint ran between Litherland Alley and Crooked Lane, contained a number of houses and appears in the 1826 Liverpool directory. Not a place to visit after dark. Delete it off the thread if you don’t think it should be on here.

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/ogdenweint1825directory.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/OW.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/ogdenweint.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/OgdenWeintasseenfromLitherlandAlley1939.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/OgdenWeint1938.jpg.html
    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/OgdenWeint1931.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/OgdenWeintasseenfromLitherlandAlley1938.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/ow-1.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/ow-2.jpg.html

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      Absolutely fantastic pics. I have a lot of interest in this area as The Dolphin in Steers House was a favourite haunt of mine in the early to mid 80s.
      I love the narrow streets, it’s something town planners forget, that feeling of discovery winding through passageways.
      I find it hard to comprehend that Liverpool 1 was designed after Capital of Culture. I don’t see any difference in the design to that of the shopping areas that replaced bombed areas in WWII in other cities. I look at Clayton Square, now reduced to a passageway and mourn the the loss of the old square.
      What was the point in Liverpool 1 if all it did was make Church Street less desirable? Who would of thought that George Henry Lees would be reduced to a Pound Shop?
      Our world heritage waterfront now has a building on Mann Island that looks exactly the same as the one from the 60s we’ve just demolished from Lime Street.
      The worst loss was probably the sailors home. At least we’ve got the gates!
      The planners in the 50s had an excuse at least.

  14. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen I wasn’t sure if you wanted any interloping threads getting shoehorned into the Aigburth Dingle stuff. But this was a gem too good not to pass on. I was a messenger for a shipping and forwarding agents for a couple of years after leaving school and my day was spent ferreting round the hidden parts of town, looking for little companies and businesses I had to collect paperwork from. There were some extraordinary byways and passages still to be found then in the 60s that have long been swept away. I think this was what awakened my interest in the city’s history. The place has been absolutely ruined, the Pier Head particularly, with the pointless museum building and the black glass monstrosity looming over the Canning Dock. I know building design has to move forward, otherwise buildings would all look like Stonehenge, but we’re smarter now and can use computer models to see how things will fit in with the surroundings. Steers House was a classic example of poor design. Up and gone in three decades. Funny that St Georges Hall, built to a design of a couple of millennia ago, is still the smartest building in the city. And nobody would countenance removing the three buildings on the waterfront. Why then are we building things so far removed from them?
    Good site showing some of the lost buildings of the city.
    https://localwiki.org/liverpool/Liverpool's_destroyed_landmarks

    Before we were married, my wife and I used to go to the Dolphin too. That was about 1970. You crossed over by the Sailors Home and went up a sort of fire escape then to get to it. I think the access was changed later. When did it shut?

    • ross walsh says:

      I was curious where Ogden Weint would be today and managed to plot it using a 1907 map and two points that have not moved since – the top of the Victoria Monument and the bottom right corner of the Salthouse Dock. Ogden Weint would have stood where the white cross is under the word “Courts” in the photograph. A good way away from what is called Canning Place today.
      http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/plotted.jpg.html

    • Glen Huntley says:

      The Dolphin was turned into a Chinese restaurant in the late 80s. You’re right Steers House was a horrible building but The Dolphin had a little basement Club that had a curved ceiling and portholes on the doors to the toilet. There was a big ramp next to the staircase that went up to the first floor. We all had scooters and used to drive up it. Fun going up, loads of fun going down!
      Although I criticised Liverpool 1, it’s not all bad. They way the opened up the layout of the city was good and the Paradise Street area needed the change. It was the design of the place I don’t like, also that the two major shopping developments in the city (Liverpool 1 and Clayton Square) were designed so they needed massive steps to access them.
      The Clayton Square one baffles me as they turned a gradual gradient from Church Street to Lime Street into something that Rocky would run up in a training session.

  15. dave homan says:

    IM 74 YRS OLD AND LIVE IN BELGRAVE RD ALL MY LIFE, THE TARMAC WAS THE WATERTANK FIGHT FIRES. BOMBSITE DAMENY ST.
    YES LARK LANE AND THE CASSSY WERE MY PLAY AREA, AND THE GOLLIES (BACK OF THE BARRACKS HAMLET AREA.
    I WENT TO ST MICHAELS IN 1945 AND THEN DINGLE VALE SCHOOLS. USE TO WATCH THE STEAM TRAINS AT ST MICHAELS ST, WITH MY GRANDAD FELL, LOVED THE TRAMS AND THE OVERHEAD RAILWAY (WHAT A LOSS THAT WAS)
    YES I REMEMBER MISSES MARE, THE BIKE SHOP, GREENS CAF, HOGGS DAIRY KNOCKED ABOUT WITH BILLY HOGG THEM DAYS.ALL FOR NOW ,,,DAVE HOMAN,

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hello Dave
      Thanks for commenting. Our family (the Kennys) lived on the corner of Belgrave and Bryanston from the 1940s till 86.
      I don’t know if you have seen the post but I have written about the area behind the Barracks in the “Dickensons Dingle” article. Why was it called the Gollies? Was it something to do with the golf course?

      • dave homan says:

        yes it was a golf course two wopping big hills and a short putting area.no good for tiger woods types ha ha if you turned left at the golf course or the gollies you then came to the marsh, there is a housing estate there now. ps turning left is from aigburth rd looking towards the river.
        in the winter the two big hill was great for sledging down etc.

      • Glen Huntley says:

        Sounds great Dave, I tried to find more on the golf course but didn’t get too far. As you lived in Belgrave Road, have you also read my post here as part of it is about that road?

        https://theprioryandthecastironshore.wordpress.com/2014/10/09/robert-griffiths-toxteth-park-glen-huntly-glen-toxteth-and-dempseys-hollow/

        If you lived in the Aigburth Road end especially this could relate to the land your house was built on.

        I used to pull a milk cart around those streets as a young child in the 1970s for Hoggs. Was it John and Norman? My memory is not as good as yours!

      • Glen Huntley says:

        Hi Dave
        Here are some links to photos of my family, my older brothers and sisters (including me my Mum had 9 of us), mostly in the 1950s and around the area of Bryanston where we lived. I thought you might like to see them for a bit of nostalgia. Also shown is a pic of Livingston Drive and the Allotments:

  16. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen The Dolphin was an early attempt at a theme pub and was originally supposed to be a submarine. It had a proper periscope hanging from the ceiling and an old style diver’s suit, plus lots of pipes and valves all over the place. The stools were five gallon cans supposed to be depth charges. Half full of concrete and with a padded top, you could rupture yourself moving them. I think it was a free house. They had some funny beers in there too. Toby bitter and Gauntlet lager – always a bad sign in those days. I think Tetleys took it over eventually and out went the submarine theme.

    I’d agree there wasn’t much else they could do with the area Liverpool 1 occupies. Paradise St had shops down both sides originally and four streets running off it up to South John St, all wiped out by the Blitz. They just covered the huge empty space with grass and benches and it was nice for shop and office workers to have somewhere to go and eat their lunch in the summer. Then they built the Moat House, followed by the ugly car park and bus station. So none of that was a loss really. But there’s a sense when you’re in there of not being connected with streets in a city any more. I have to say I’ve never bought anything in there.

    The steps in Clayton Sq are a pain. Something to do with maximising the selling space by giving the shops more floors I believe. I preferred the higgledy piggledy little shops of Cases St.
    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/claytonsq1963.jpg.html

    I’ve had a good look through the net and newspapers I have access to but nothing about an unexploded bomb in the Brook House, other than the single mention of it landing on the bowling green that you must have found. I looked through The Times but though it mentions areas where a UXB was being worked on, it never really specifies exactly where. Perhaps they didn’t want the Germans to know how accurate they’d been.

    I went to South Grange in 1955 and was there when we all got moved out into the Rivoli cinema. I wonder was your sister there then?

    • Glen Huntley says:

      By the sounds of it my Sister was there at the same time as she remembers the roof falling in. Her name then was Joan Kenny Glen Huntley is my blogging name, my real name is Jim Kenny.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      Hi Ross
      Looking through old photos I found a couple of my Mod days that tie in to our recent conversations.
      Just out of interest I thought I’d post the links.

      The Dolphin basement must have been pretty close to the Old Dock come to think of it.

      My friend Ed outside The Dolphin in 1986, looks like he’s about to ride up that ramp!:

      The carpark and entrance to the basement:

      Me, outside another old pub, The Mayflower on Fazakerley Street:

      And a Lark Lane one, a friend and my brother on my scooter in Hassandra Grove in 1986:

      I would never of thought I end up using my pictures on a history site (I must be getting old!)

  17. ross walsh says:

    The name is very familiar Glen,but I couldn’t put a face to it. The only names I remember from my class were Joe Maguire, John Bridgeman, Paul Adams Diane Edwards, Gail Traynor and Susan Barton. Just run those past your sister.

  18. ross walsh says:

    I thought scooters were a great advance on motor bikes, not as fast but just more civilised to ride. Surprised they ever really went out of fashion. I never owned one during the 60s boom – too young – but there were quite a few lads turned up at Tocky Tech on them, mirrors sticking out everywhere. I did own a parka though. A proper US army fishtail one. Thirty shillings in the Army&Navy in Byrom St.

    Curious that Steers House has now become a memory itself. The basement of the Customs House, after they’d cleared the rubble away, presented a danger to anyone falling in as they were quite deep. So they put a five foot brick wall around it. My old man lifted me up to look over when I was very small and I still remember it being full of scummy green water. I think the northernmost wall in the direction of the QEII courts is where they came across the remains of the old dock. More or less where the scooter picture is.

    Still never got around to paving Hadassah grove then? I remember my parents looking at a house there in the early 60s. Right at the bottom where the turn is. I think it was £2000.

  19. ross walsh says:

    Hi Glen Just been reading yours and Dave’s posts on the “Gollies” and Bryanston Rd. Hard to imagine that my mother used to take us kids down to the golf links for the day with a few sandwiches and a teapot wrapped up to keep it hot in a shopping bag. Can’t remember now how we got down there, I think we went down Larkfield Rd and crossed the railway bridge. Or down to the end of St Michaels. Here’s some 1908 maps:

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/map1020.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/map1021.jpg.html

    http://s1162.photobucket.com/user/seftonpark10/media/map1019.jpg.html

    Your family pics show another age, a lifetime away from today, with hardly any traffic about, the kids dressed up in their best. I spotted the location of the one with the pram right away – Livingston Dr behind the library. The immaculate garden behind used to be patrolled daily by the old man tended it. Kids from the Lane going to school would now and then go down Hargreaves Rd, vault the wall on the right and run across the lawn and out the gate. It didn’t save any time, but there was the added drama of “Baldie” emerging from his hiding place and chasing you. I remember those allotments too. Perfect for raids on the gooseberry and strawberry patches. Before they built the social services place, there was a field to the right, just behind the Hamlet church and there was a beautiful white horse kept in it for years. Don’t know who owned it and never saw it ridden. Local kids were always taking it carrots and apples.

    • ross walsh says:

      Forgot to add if you save the maps to your pc you can zoom right in on them and they’re very clear.

      • Glen Huntley says:

        Great, ‘will do. It’s a bit of a struggle on the phone!
        I love hearing peoples memories of the shore area as when I was young it was either a tip or overgrown wasteland. Now and then you’d see something like an old gate post or a bit of wall that would make you wonder what went before. Still fun though.

    • Glen Huntley says:

      What I like about those maps is that the terraced houses are only partly built from Errol Street on.

  20. Richard Daglish says:

    Just caught the earlier bits about the AFS station in Cressington Park. I am old enough to remember the house, which had space for trailer pumps, usually towed behind private cars. I think the cellar was opened up so vehicles could be parked below ground. There were EWS [emergency water supply] tanks at several places, one on the Cressington prom [no nonsense about esplanade then] and one at the opening to Woodend Park. Tempting for small boys, despite flies and dumped rubbish, in spite of mesh covers.

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