Monday 22 October 2012

The Great Money Trick

Liverpool City Council commissioned local artist David Jacques to produce this artwork as part of the City of Radicals programme in 2011. It is inspired by Robert Tressell's socialist novel 'The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists'. Tressell, who died in Liverpool in 1911, was a house painter and signwriter. The Great Money Trick is a key chapter in his political novel. Jacques' Dale Street awning pays tribute to Tressell by creating the lettering in century old signwriter style.

Saturday 20 October 2012

'Tinned Up' Anfield

I recently visited a few of the Victorian terraced streets near to Liverpool's football stadium which are scheduled to be demolished as part of the Anfield and Breckfield Regeneration scheme ('creating neighbourhoods for the future'). Once levelled they will disappear beneath the large housing estate that is currently being constructed over the graves of recently demolished neighbouring streets.

This is no.154 Hartnup Streer. Six months ago the bay windows of Hartnup Street were given a makeover with scenes of Liverpool captured by students from Alsop High School. The idea was to make the street look more pleasing for the April 2012 Sea Odyssey spectacular. It was hoped that the large crowds following the the Little Girl Giant, her Uncle, and faithful companion Xolo as they pass through Anfield wouldn't be offended by the shabby dereliction that is Hartnup Street. The photos are still there (Oct 2012) but I was told by one local that the street only has a couple of weeks left before the bulldozers appear!
Hartnup Street becomes a photo gallery to welcome the giant puppets.

Granton Road, bathed in autumn sun, looks too good to demolish (was refurbishment never a viable option for these houses?). 
I've wandered through several 'regeneration' areas of Liverpool where whole streets have been emptied and 'tinned up'. One familiar sound breaks the silence in all of these places. It's the hopeless 'cheep' of a smoke alarm - calling to a long departed occupier to replace the battery. Somehow that seems so sad!