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Spring into the bank holiday weekend at National Museums Liverpool

27 April 2017 by Laura

Those three little words we all long to hear – bank holiday weekend!

This year it feels a little more special as the bank holiday is actually on 1st May – May Day – an opportunity to say goodbye to the dark winter months and welcome in the summer.

To celebrate this we’ve have come up with four ways to not only help you make the most of the long weekend but also mark the passing of the seasons:

1.Symbols of fertility in ‘Ancient Egypt: A journey through time at World Museum’.

Egypt objects

Taweret, a goddess who protected women during pregnancy and childbirth. The amulets are over 2000 years old. Image © National Museums Liverpool

An absolute must is the opening weekend of this new incredible space for all things ancient Egypt. Did you know that National Museums Liverpool holds one of the UK’s most significant collections of ancient Egyptian and Nubian antiquities? In the new gallery, nearly trebled in size to feature a new mummy room and 1,000 key objects, many of which have never been on public display before, look out for the four little amulets, once owned by Florence Nightingale. These particular amulets represent the goddess Taweret, who was believed to protect women during pregnancy and childbirth.

2. ‘Spring (Apple Blossoms)’ by Millais at Walker Art Gallery.



‘Spring (Apple Blossoms)’ 1859 by Sir John Everett Millais (1829 – 1898)

There is just over a week left to catch the Walker’s jubilant homecoming exhibition, ‘Victorian Treasures‘ which was on loan in Japan in 2015 and 2016. An exhibition rich in some of the most significant names in Victorian art, one painting in particular relates to this bank holiday. ‘Spring (Apple Blossom)’ by Millais celebrates the coming of Spring, in glorious ‘truth to nature’ detail. Beautiful young women laze among the apple blossoms of a bountiful orchard. It’s an idyllic scene, however the image also carries a cautionary message about the passage of time. A scythe, a symbol of death, appears on the edge of the painting as a reminder that time passes, seasons change and exhibitions come to an end (7 May) – so don’t miss this one!

3. ‘Waiting: The monument to the Liverpool working horse’ at Museum of Liverpool.


Horse sculpture

‘Waiting: The monument to the Liverpool working horse’ created by Judy Boyt FRSA.

For more than 250 years horse were used to move goods to and from Liverpool docks and businesses. At their peak more than 20,000 horses worked on the streets of Liverpool, more than in any other city outside London. Their role was pivotal in keeping the docks running smoothly and their hard work was traditionally rewarded on May Day, when the horses were draped in flowers and paraded through the city. In 2010, after ten years of fund-raising, ‘Waiting: The monument to the Liverpool working horse’ was unveiled. This bank holiday why not come and take a look at this poignant reminder of how the horses were a vital cog within the workings of Liverpool’s docks. Or, join the event ‘Remembering the Liverpool carters’, a week later on Sat 6 May when, through talks, crafts and the handling collection, the Museum honours the memory of their work and celebrates their role on Liverpool’s docks.

4. ‘Fresh Perspectives’ at Lady Lever Art Gallery.


Art work

Student’s work in ‘Fresh Perspectives’ on display until this weekend at the Lady Lever Art Gallery.

The breadth of creative talent of Wirral school children is on display in this exhibition at the Lady Lever which closes this weekend. Don’t miss the paintings, 3D work, textiles and digital imagery of the students of four Wirral secondary schools. The tapestries of Weatherhead High School in particular, with their floral inspiration, are a lovely nod to the arrival of springtime.

Take a look at the website for more ideas for the long weekend.

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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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