Aug 26, 2020

15 Minute Liverpool - Familiar Sights

When I wrote my first post I intended to get out and explore the area around DoES Liverpool on at least 2 lunchtimes per week. It’s been more than a month and I’ve only made 2 more trips, and only now got round to writing them up…

My first trip was down to St George’s Plateau and then half way down Dale Street on 30 July, a beautiful warm and sunny day - I must have been walking fast to get that far, as it’s outside the 15 minute isochrone on Adrian’s map; it took me more than 20 minutes on the way back, uphill and in the heat:

Out of the Fabric District and into an area of large spaces and student apartments where the architects might have had a bit of fun applying different surface textures and patterns to buildings which have the same basic structure. Then past grand classical buildings containing the city’s great cultural institutions. It certainly seems feasible to make a short visit to the art gallery or library on a lunch break from DoES Liverpool.

Then the top half of Dale Street contains some excellent pubs, along with offices and sandwich shops. I returned along a slightly different route, past tourist cafes, Egyptian themed outcrops of the Birkenhead tunnel and a basrelief drum commemorating the victims of Hillsborough.

This was a really lovely walk and shows the richness of the city easily accessible from Kempston Street.

My second trip was on 17 August, to the city centre shops, my first visit since before lockdown. I started off via London Road, a mixture of older buildings, replacement apartment blocks and world food shops. There are some nice new outdoor spaces, with places to sit, and an unreconstructed market, before you get to the main street which is busy with buses.

I then went past the railway hotel and Lime Street station, fronted by a large new plaza, before crossing the road, down past the front of St John’s Shopping Centre and down through the busy pedestrianised area to Marks and Spencer. I hadn’t left a whole hour for the trip, so there wasn’t really time to do anything except buy a quick snack before returning in the same direction.

Then it took me until Tuesday morning to put the photos together and load them onto YouTube. This time I used Adobe Rush, which was pretty quick - I didn’t crop or straighten the photos and I didn’t do any editing apart from adding titles. Ideally I’d like the time for each photo to be less, or to be able to flick through them as stills. I still haven’t worked out how to set up a website, so that’s the next thing, but at least I can link this page to my Instagram account.

Looking back at these trips, they both cover ground that feels very familiar and safe to me - I want to start looking at parts of the area I know less well and see what facilities they have to offer. I think I should start looking for particular features that might be worth recording and that tell us something about the local area. I think what I’ve been doing so far is very tangential to the 15 minute city idea.

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