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Sending brimstone to Ireland

30 November 2010 by Sarah

List of Irish ports and goods 1819

Myers’ Mercantile Advertiser, 1819

The Irish economy and its close links with the British economy has been in the news recently, so here is some evidence of the situation in 1819.  This extract is from Myers’ Mercantile Advertiser, Monday 8th February 1819 and shows some of the goods shipped from Liverpool to various ports in Ireland in the previous few weeks.  As most of the commodities would not have been produced in Liverpool it demonstrates the importance of the port as a trading hub.  The abbreviation ‘c’ stands for hundredweight, which confusingly was normally 112lbs (or about 50kgs), so the quantity of goods is quite large. Read more…

Lusitania losses

29 November 2010 by stepheng

napkin with image of a ship and text

Image courtesy of the Liverpool Daily Post and Echo.

I find the words on the napkin, produced to commemorate one of the worst maritime disasters of the First World War, very moving.

To many people at the time the loss of the Lusitania came to symbolise Liverpool’s suffering, as she was the city’s favourite passenger liner.

The spectacular coloured glass war memorial at one of my local churches, St James’s in West Derby, uniquely uses an image of the doomed ship to silently express that grief. Read more…

World Museum’s ‘Party for Pudsey’

26 November 2010 by Alison

This time last week World Museum was filled with more excitement and activity than usual and I was there to take part in it all.

Children in Need where filming the live regional broadcasts from the atrium at World Museum that were broadcast around the North west.

Some of you in the North West may have watched Terry Wogan and Tess Daly presenting live from London but noticed that every hour presenters Graham Liver and Kate Simms were in World Museum. Read more…

Last stop Sikkim

26 November 2010 by Emma

View down to a pedestrianised street with shops on either side and mountains in the background

View over the Gangtok promenade

My final week of research has brought me to Gangtok, the state capital of Sikkim. Its a marked contrast to Kalimpong, here you are closer to the mountains, despite being in almost tropical jungle. The town is perched on a wooded valley hillside and looks out over rice paddies, that are just being harvested, and two important monasteries, Rumtek and Lingdum. Sikkim is wealthy in comparison to other hill states in India and the place has the feel of an English spa town. My work here will centre on the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology and the State Archive and already the work is going well. Everything stopped for a couple of days as Diwali was celebrated across India.  The Festival of Lights is a time of pujas to Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, and also a good excuse for families to get together and set off fireworks. These could be seen and heard across the town and for those wanting an early night’s sleep, a very decent pair of earplugs was essential. Read more…

Nicholas does the double!

25 November 2010 by Laura

Two men next to painting

(From L to R)Andrew Morris, director of Rathbones with winning artist Nicholas Middleton

Nicholas Middleton has won the John Moores Visitors’ Choice for a second time!

His painting ‘Protest, April 1st 2009’ definitely appealed to a particular mood amongst visitors to the exhibition. As one put it: “He has taken away the decoration and concentrated on the stark financial climate we live in.”

Most however were struck by Nicholas’ technical ability, with one visitor commenting: “The skill, detail and effort in the painting are amazing. To me it is a modern-day equivalent of the old 18th century masters.” Read more…

Guardian Public Services Award

25 November 2010 by Sam

members of the Education and Communities team

The partnership between National Museums Liverpool, Liverpool Primary Care Trust (PCT) and mental health centre Mary Seacole House has been recognised for the Gateway to Active Living project at this year’s Guardian Public Services Awards.

National Museums Liverpool won the Care Of Older People award for our work in making culture accessible to older people in the city. At the ceremony in London, host Jeremy Vine said: “The judges were impressed with the project for encouraging community engagement and for giving the 260 older people who visited the museum a sense of empowerment, confidence, new skills and pride.” Read more…

Winter Arts Market

24 November 2010 by Karen

This Saturday (27 November) we’ll be running a stall at the Winter Arts Market at St George’s Hall in Liverpool city centre. As well as lots of information on our venues, events and exhibitions, and will also have a selection of our books to buy, ranging from exhibition guides to collection catalogues. The perfect Christmas present for the book lover in your life!

So if you’d like to try before you buy, or just fancy a festive fair, then pop along. It’s open 10am-5pm. There’s more on the market on their website. And if you can’t make it along on the day there’s always our online shop. Read more…

Shackleton’s Antarctic Adventure Competition

24 November 2010 by davidl

Open now at Merseyside Maritime Museum, Endurance: Shackleton’s Antarctic Adventure tells the amazing story of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1914 expedition to the vast continent of Antarctica, as told through the photographs taken of the voyage by Frank Hurley, who dove into icy waters to retrieve his negatives.

To celebrate this pioneering explorer spirit we want to see photos of your travels and explorations, whether from exotic destinations thousands of miles away or somewhere unusual closer to home. You don’t have to brave the harsh conditions that Shackleton and his crew endured, just be imaginative! Read more…

Painting History

23 November 2010 by Laura

One of the things I love most about the John Moores Painting Prize is the convincing way it demonstrates just how versatile painting is. In its 53 year history it has brought a wildly varied selection of paintings to our attention. It is not just the subject or themes of the images that differ but also the way the artists use the materials and the act of painting itself.

A talk by John Moores exhibitor Sigrid Holmwood last week was a fascinating insight into an artist whose dedication to detail and accuracy goes beyond the usual expectations. Read more…

Catalan visit

22 November 2010 by Sarah

people looking at document

Last week the Maritime Archives & Library had a visit from staff from a number of maritime museums in Catalonia.  The Barcelona Maritime Museum, which, it pains me to say, is in an historic building even more impressive than ours, is thinking of setting up an archive facility with public access and so came to look at our stores and public searchroom.  Needless to say they arrived on a classic Albert Dock day of driving rain and grey skies, but we wouldn’t want the British obsession with the weather to be undermined with a nice sunny day.

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Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

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We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.