The sound of an engine starting up in the morning tends to make one of us get up and put the kettle on and see who is leaving today. Another morning of the full six boats pulling out in turn and heading back under the bridge to Albert Dock. That will be us tomorrow morning. Our new neighbour made a move shortly afterwards and moved up a couple of moorings that had become available, not sure if we smelt or if that was their allotted mooring that hadn’t been available when they arrived.
Mick set off as soon as he’d had breakfast to pick up our life jackets. He opted to go by bus, but this proved to be more expensive than the train as he had to buy a rover ticket. The jackets were ready and waiting to be picked up. They all passed and only one auto-inflate needed replacing, even though we thought they were all out of date.
Once back we decided that we’d only be able to visit one type of God today and opted for the Anglican. On the way we called into John Lewis so that I could exchange some wool, I’d under estimated how much blue I needed and over estimated the red, so a straight swap was easy.
Mick opted to head on up the tower to admire the views whilst I kept my feet firmly on the ground and had a good look around.
The first Bishop of Liverpool was appointed in 1880 who was installed at St Peter’s Church in the town centre. In 1901 a decision was made to build a cathedral worthy of Liverpool. Giles Gilbert Scott submitted his design in 1903 at the young age of 22 and was partnered up with a more senior architect George Bodley. The foundation stone was laid by King Edward VII the following year and work started on the Lady Chapel.
At the end of June 1910 the chapel was complete. Today you enter the chapel down stairs from the main cathedral. A very pretty chapel greets you with it’s predominantly blue stained glass windows and wonderful carvings. High above the organ pipes cling to the wall like a slightly tatty romantic baroque moth. This took my attention away from much else here.
Worked progressed despite both world wars and eventually the building was completed, a thanksgiving service was held in 1978 in the presence of Queen Elizabeth II. It is the largest Cathedral in the UK and fifth largest in the world.
Everything seems so clean, most probably because it isn’t as old as I’d expected. Most memorials in the aisles are carved into the structure of the building. Two stood out to me. The first was simple and was for one of the four organists the cathedral has had since 1910. Henry Custard will have played both the Moth organ in the Lady’s Chapel and the one in the Cathedral. Built in 1926, the organ was the largest musical instrument ever conceived. It has 8 manual divisions and pedals, 199 draw stops controlling 10,268 pipes played from two massive consoles. Today the organ was being tested prior to a recital tomorrow. It certainly has some very very low notes that resonated around the building as they were played in turn. If we were still here tomorrow I know that we’d be paying £1 to sit and listen to this mighty beast.
The second was in memory of a bishop who passed away around 2005. Sadly I didn’t record his name. The sculptural memorial is very reminiscent of the way a hard pebble gets moved around on a softer stone leaving different bowl shapes carved out on it, also a little like a rock pool. All of this has been carved into the fabric of the building with only the pebble added.
Mick in the meantime had made it to the top of the Cathedral with the assistance of a couple of lifts! On the way up he got to see the bells and on the way down there was an embroidery room where gowns are stored, he didn’t stop here. Up on the roof the views were great. Men were working on a house roof meters below. He managed to take quite a few photos, sadly our mooring is just out of sight so no photos of Oleanna.
On our way back to the boat we stopped off to pick up enough provisions to see us through till Monday when we hope to be moored somewhere suitable for a supermarket delivery. The boaters who arrived today are all very chatty and excited about where to go and what to see whilst they are here. The washing machine has now washed everything possible and has had a 90deg wash to give it a clean. The dishwasher is also having a clean before we top up the water tank for the last time ready for an early start tomorrow.
0 locks, 0 miles, 3 life jackets serviced, 1 ball wool exchanged, 2 nephew presents returned, 1 house of God visited, 10,298 pipes! 2 lifts, 108 steps, 1 pair of very squeaky shoes, 1 man passing off photocopies as originals, 2 new neighbours, 6 cat naps til freedom!