Building the Mersey Tunnels

The Art Deco portal to Queensway the first Mersey Tunnel

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/17-deaths-250-tonnes-explosive-13696923

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above

These are the tickets my family were given when we walked through the new (2nd) Tunnel in 1971, the day before it opened to vehicles.

This is the front page of the booklet produced to celebrate of the opening of Kingsway Tunnel in 1971.

I have always been fascinated by the Mersey Tunnels, their history and how they were constructed. This Liverpool Echo article gives an interesting insight into both of them.

What MP’s cost us – It needs to be brought under control

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/merseyside-mp-metro-mayors-first-13594361

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above

With all due respect to the Trinity Mirror Group I think they have the wrong target here with regard to the issue of MP’s expenses. The fact that MP’s wish to travel first class to enable them to work is actually fine by me, I would only gripe about such travel if MP’s were using it for luxury entitlement rather than working.

The real issue for me is the truly huge amount of money that MP’s are given to run their local offices and employ staff to work for them. This is surely the area for significant savings.

My view is that the premises used in their constituencies by MP’s should be procured by civil servants and the people working for MP’s should also be civil servants on secondment. This way costs could be reduced/controlled by reducing the number of employees and any hint of MP’s staff working for party political purposes removed.

MP’s are in general too detached from real life as many are the product of a party political process that means a lot of them have never worked in the real world. They effectively go straight into politics from university working their way up the slippy party political pole, often starting as MP’s assistants/staff paid for by the public purse.

Our unrepresentative electoral system fuels this process as political parties can place their up and coming people into parliamentary seats that are a virtual certainty to be won by one of the major parties. The party is thereby selecting the MP not the electorate.

My view is that we the public need to retake control of MP’s so that they are actually accountable to their constituents rather than to their political party. Changing the way that MP’s can rent/buy premises and hire & fire staff at a local level is one of the solutions, but can’t you just hear the cries of no, no, no, from those who make their livings from the public purse!

Skelmersdale – Putting it back on the railway map?

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/skelmersdale-rail-link-moves-step-13639557

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above

I have covered this project previously and whilst I know that some Lancashire folk are highly sceptical of the £300m+ new railway line and Skem station ever being funded this is clearly another, if small, milestone along the right track.

Here’s a shot of the old and now long gone former Skelmersdale Station:-

The old Skelmersdale Station – now long gone in the name of 1950’s/60’s progress!

And here’s a couple of shots taken at Rainford Junction Station (there is no junction now):-

And finally a shot at Kirkby Station (the subject of a future posting of mine) where the present line from Wigan meets head on with Merseyrail’s electric service to/from Liverpool:-

End of the line from Wigan, the Merseyrail service to Liverpool is accessed under the bridge.

NoteThe last trains to Skelmersdale ran on Sunday 4 November 1956 and the station closed to passengers on Monday 5 November 1956. Skelmersdale station remained open for goods services until 4 November 1963 when it was closed completely. Information from Disused Stations UK.

Click on the photos to enlarge them

The last photo is amongst my Flickr shots at:-

www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

St. Lukes Church (the bombed out church) – Liverpool

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/seven-things-you-probably-dont-13028821

The Liverpool Echo has the story on it web site – see link above

There’s been a lot of talk in recent times about how to give this iconic symbol of Liverpool in the Blitz a sustainable future. On a personal level though I can’t escape the story of what happened on the night the incendiary bomb hit St. Lukes and the fact that I had the privilege to talk with a person who was fire watching that night and saw it happen. My previous posting from 2010 refers:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2010/11/16/uncle-albert-he-saw-the-bombing-of-liverpool-from-a-birds-eye-view-point/

Sadly ‘Uncle Albert’ died earlier this year but whenever I see St. Lukes or hear of it I think of that brave young chap (who became one of my best mates in his mid 70’s until he passed away aged 95) standing atop George Henry Lees fire watching as Liverpool was being destroyed all around him

Anthony Walker – 12th anniversary but racism still stalks our streets

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/anthony-walker-murder-twelfth-anniversary-13404822

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above

Goodness me is it really 12 years since this appalling crime? Sadly racist crimes are still around and in recent times have been showing a worrying increase. Do some people learn nothing? Hate crime has no place in a civilised society.

Bootle – The things folks will do to find out what’s going on in Sefton Council’s bunker

Bootle Town Hall

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/boy-14-taken-hospital-after-13329753

What an odd story (see link to the Liverpool Echo’s web site above), with clearly more to come.

Bootle Town Hall is a really nice building although sadly having been bombed during WWII it not as grand as it once was because of a 1960’s refurbishment.

A previous posting of mine from 2014 about this significant building can be accessed via the link below:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2014/06/07/bootle-town-hallrochdale-town-hall-buildings-of-victorian-civic-pride/