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Commemorating the first day of the Somme

monument with wreaths of poppies

A memorial to the Liverpool and Manchester Pals in Montauban village commemorates their actions on 1 July

In my previous blog I described how the first day of the Somme on 1 July 1916 was a disaster for the Allies, and I could write an entire article about contributing factors, such as the inadequate reconnaissance, the wrong types of ordnance, the tactical mistakes etc. Instead I want to talk about the contribution of the King’s Liverpool Regiment on the day.

The Liverpool Pals (17th, 18th, 19th and 20th Battalions of the King’s Regiment) had formed in the early months of the First World War. They arrived at the Western Front in November 1915, and although they had been involved in some small skirmishes, this was to be their baptism of fire. Read more…

The centenary of the Somme battles

30 June 2016 by Karen O'Rourke

old photo of a young man in uniform

Portrait photograph postcard of Private Harry Grace, King’s Regiment. Written on the reverse, ‘Signaller Harry Grace, Killed in France 1st July 1916, 18th Service K.L.R. “Pals” (2nd Batt).’ Private Harry Grace was a scoutmaster and prominent member of Richmond Baptist Youth Group. He was 19 when he was killed by a shell at the Somme.

One hundred years ago this week, on 1 July 1916, British Forces suffered their worst casualties ever in one single day. Communities all over Britain will come together on Friday 1 July to commemorate the anniversary of what is often called, ‘the bloodiest day in British military history’. At the Museum of Liverpool our latest exhibition First World War: Charity and Liverpool’s Home Front, looks at some of the organisations that were instrumental in helping both the casualties who came home from the war, and also the families of the men who did not.

That first day of the Somme saw 19,240 British men killed in action, a further 40,000 were wounded or taken prisoner. The British front line stretched from Gommecourt to Maricourt – around 18 miles of trenches. South of Maricourt, the French Army held the line. The battle was a tactical one, meant to divert German troops from a much larger battle, being fought against the French further east at Verdun.  Read more…

Social Media Day

30 June 2016 by Lisa Middleton

MOL twitter screenshotDid you know it’s Social Media Day today (Thursday 30 June)?

Social media is a great way for our museums and galleries to connect with visitors with fun facts, behind the scenes previews and exciting videos.

Read more…

Neither fame nor fortune – being a Liverpool film extra

29 June 2016 by Kay

Alison and Doris

Alison and her mum Doris in costume

Museum of Liverpool Curator, Sharon Brown tells us about her brushes with fame as a film extra in the city.

“My lovely Auntie Elsie worked at the Job Centre in Williamson Square and helped to recruit local people as film extras. This was how my best mate Alison and I appeared as extras in a number of films during the 1970s and 80s, including The Rutles.

‘The Rutles: All You Need is Cash’ was a parody of The Beatles, released in 1978. I remember filming at the Atlantic Tower hotel and the old Liverpool Airport, where we had to emulate screaming fans welcoming the band as they arrived.

Read more…

Did you dig it?

14 June 2016 by Liz

South Castle Street excavation

South Castle Street excavation

Merseyside Archaeological Society (MAS) marks its 40th birthday this year. To celebrate Museum of Liverpool is highlighting some of the finds from some sites excavated by the society in a new display Digging it!, which opened today. We will also be hosting the society’s conference in October. Read more…

80th birthday celebrations for Carl Davis

9 June 2016 by Kay

Union Jack waistcoat in museum display

Carl’s Union Jack waistcoat, 2010

Today, BBC Radio 3 are recording a special 80th birthday performance for Carl Davis. Carl will discuss his career in film and conduct some of his best loved scores including his music for The World at War, The Far Pavilions and Pride and Prejudice. Read more…

Hospice artwork displayed for 20th anniversary

7 June 2016 by Kay

tree collage artwork with Liverpool waterfront in background

Today we put on display this special ‘tree of life’ artwork in the Museum of Liverpool.

It was made by a group of around 40 people, 2013 – 2015 at Woodlands Hospice, Aintree. The members of the drop-in group consisted of people of all ages and backgrounds who had lost loved-ones cared for by the Hospice.

The members chose the Liverpool skyline as the backdrop as this was a common bond they all shared. Sentimental items, unique to each person, were chosen by each participant and carefully added to the tree. Each item tells an individual story and represents each loved-one’s life. Read more…

Celebrate the International Mersey River Festival this weekend!

3 June 2016 by Sam Vaux

© Mark McNulty

Merseyside Maritime Museum and Museum of Liverpool © Mark McNulty

From Friday 3 – Sunday 5 June, the waterfront will be awash with fun, nautical activities for all the family at the International Mersey River Festival, which will include tall ships, jet ski stunts, boat races, Royal Marines combat displays and air displays. Our waterfront museums will be hosting crafts and activities including Dockwatch, where you can take a closer look… Read more…

Half term fun

26 May 2016 by Megan

River Festival

River Festival

Half-term is fast approaching and National Museums Liverpool has a fantastic range of activities to keep the little ones busy.

The Merseyside Maritime Museum’s is the big 3-0 this year and we are celebrating in style! We are taking you back to the 80s with DJ Barryoke playing the hits and a 1980s themed photo booth for visitors to capture all the fun. Performances, workshops and crafts will also be running over the two days (30 & 31 May). See our website for more details Read more…

Behind the scenes with Hagrid’s bike

25 May 2016 by Laura

Bike

Hagrid’s bike on display at Museum of Liverpool until 9 June 2016

Many of you will have seen by now that we have a rather magical piece of film history currently on display in Museum of Liverpool.

It’s a flying visit by Hagrid’s motorbike and sidecar from the film ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1’, before it zooms away on 9 June. Read more…



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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.