Thursday, 14 May 2015

Ferry across the Mersey...

More from my visit to The Wirral in 1984.  We did, as I said, cross the Mersey on the ferry.  This is the view as you go through the terminal to the dock - or was the view at that time anyway.

Approaching the Mersey ferry (Liverpool side I think)
Apparently in the video of the famous song by Gerry and the Pacemakers it was the Mountwood ferry  they used - we got the Woodchurch (well, it would be, wouldn't it? - see previous post), as seen here coming in to dock.

Woodchurch Ferry coming to take us 'across the Mersey', 1984

The strange thing is I have another photograph of the Woodchurch ferry coming in, clearly from the Wirral direction this time.  As you can see, although the structure of the vessel is the same, the paint job looks different.  This was causing me a bit of grief until I remembered that Kodak date-stamped their slides.  A quick check revealed that this next photograph was taken in 1987, so clearly the vessel had a new paint job sometime between '84 and '87.  Mystery solved!

The 1987 version of the Woodchurch ferry
And here's a close-up, with a couple of scallys looking over, no doubt wondering if my camera was worth nicking.  Haha - only joking!!  Not all scousers are thieves...just like not all Irishmen are thick, right?!

The Woodchurch in close-up

I can't say I remember much of the crossing to Liverpool in 1984, but this is the view looking back to The Wirral.

View from the ferry, towards The Wirral

This is the view looking forwards, towards Liverpool, with a very threatening sky:

Storm brewing over Liverpool, 1984
Looks like The Wirral was definitely the poor cousin in this relationship, doesn't it?  Let's hope it's had some EU urban regeneration funds since then.  My mate Prof Simon informs me: For those not familiar with the Birkenhead skyline, the huge brick structure seen in the image 'View from the ferry, towards The Wirral' that resembles a Stalinist shopping mall not uncommon in Moscow, is in fact a vent for the first Mersey road tunnel completed in 1934. Thanks Simon for that useful snippet - I'm sure it will ease the minds of the legions of readers of this blog (Ed: legions now is it?).

The three mightily impressive looking buildings on the Liverpool side (Pier Head) are known as the Three Graces.  On the left is the famous Royal Liver Building (1911), in the middle the Cunard Building (1917) and the one on the right is the Port of Liverpool Building, the oldest of the three, finished in 1907.  Apparently they are now part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site in Liverpool.

I have to say what a wonderful job Kodachrome did of capturing those colours.

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