The William Brown street area is the central point for many of Liverpool’s civic buildings forming a so called ‘cultural quarter’. Amongst the buildings that are focal to this part of the WHS are St George’s Hall, Lime Street Station, the Walker Art Gallery, the World Museum Liverpool, the former Great North Western Hotel and the entrance the Queensway Tunnel.
St George’s Hall is on Lime Street in the centre of the English city of Liverpool, opposite Lime Street railway station. It is a building in Neoclassical style which contains concert halls and law courts, and has been designated by English Heritage as a Grade I listed building. On the east side of the hall, between it and the railway station is St George’s Plateau and on the west side are St John’s Gardens. The hall is included in the William Brown Street conservation area. In 1969 the architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner expressed his opinion that it is one of the finest neo-Grecian buildings in the world although the building is notable for its use of Roman sources as well as Greek ones. In 2004 the hall and its surrounding area were recognised as part of Liverpool’s World Heritage Site.
St George’s Plateau
This is the flat space between the hall and the railway station and contains statues of four lions by Nicholl and cast iron lamp standards with dolphin bases. Also on the plateau are monuments, includingequestrian bronzes of Prince Albert and Queen Victoria by Thomas Thornycroft, and a monument to Major-General William Earle by Birch. Between the equestrian statues is a cenotaph which was unveiled in 1930, designed by L. B. Budden and sculpted by H. Tyson Smith. It consists of a simple horizontal block with a bronze relief measuring over 31 feet (9 m) on each side. Sharples and Pollard regard it as one of the most remarkable war memorials in the country.
St John’s Gardens is an open space in Liverpool, located to the west of St George’s Hall. The gardens are part of the William Brown Street conservation area,and comprise one of the two open spaces within Liverpool’s World Heritage Site. It has been a Green Flag site since 2003. The gardens contain ornamental flower beds, and memorials to notable people of the city.
The gardens contain seven memorial statues, each of which has been designated by English Heritage as a Grade II listed building. The Rathbone Monument commemorates William Rathbone who died in 1902, although the monument had been made in 1899. It was created by George Frampton, and consists of a bronze robed figure standing on a stone pedestal. Its inscription records that Rathbone founded the district nursing movement, and the forerunners of the Universities of Liverpool and North Wales.The Gladstone Monument is to the memory of W. E. Gladstone, a former Prime Minister, who was born in Liverpool and who died in 1898. The monument dates from 1904 and was made by Thomas Brock. It consists of a bronze figure of Gladstone holding books and a roll of parchment, standing on a stone pedestal containing carvings of female figures representing Truth and Justice. The Balfour Monument commemorates Alexander Balfour, businessman and philanthropist who died in 1886. The monument dates from 1889, was sculpted by A. Bruce Joy, and consists of a bronze figure on a stone pedestal. The Lester Monument is to the memory of Canon T. Major Lester who died in 1903, and who founded charities for children in Liverpool. It was made by George Frampton, erected in 1907, and depicts a bronze figure holding a child, standing on a stone pedestal. The Nugent Memorial commemorates James Nugent, a Roman Catholic priest who worked with child welfare. The monument is dated 1906, was created by F. W. Pomeroy, and consists of a bronze figure in the attitude of blessing, and a ragged boy, both standing on a stone pedestal decorated with a bronze wreath.The Forwood Monument is to the memory of Sir Arthur Forwood, a local businessman and politician, who died in 1898. The monument was erected in 1903, was made by George Frampton and, again, is a bronze figure on a stone pedestal. Also in the gardens is a monument commemorating the service of the King’s Regiment in theSouth African War. It is dated 1905 and was sculpted by Sir W. Goscombe John. It is in white stone with a bronze wreath, and includes the figure of Britannia, military objects, standing soldiers, and a drummer boy. Also listed at Grade II are the stone walls and the gate piers surrounding the gardens. They date from 1904 and were designed by Thomas Shelmerdine
The William Brown Library and Museum
The William Brown Library and Museum is a Grade II* listed building situated on the historic William Brown Street in Liverpool. The building currently houses part of the World Museum Liverpool andLiverpool Central Library. The William Brown Library and Museum building was conceived as a replacement for the Derby Museum (containing the Earl of Derby’s natural history collection) which then shared two rooms on the city’s Duke Street with a library. The land for the building on what was then called Shaw’s Brow as well as much of the funding was provided by local MP and merchant Sir William Brown, 1st Baronet of Astrop, in whose honour the street was renamed.
Following on from the then-recently completed St. George’s Hall across the street, the new building was designed by Thomas Allom in a classical style including Corinthian columns and was modified by theLiverpool Corporation architect John Weightman. The new building opened its doors in 1860 with 400,000 people attending the opening ceremony. With Liverpool being one of the country’s key ports, much of the city was badly damaged by German bombing during the Second World War and William Brown Library and Museum were no exception. Hit by firebombs during the blitz in 1941, the building was ravaged by fire and much of the building had to be rebuilt. Fortunately, key parts of the museum’s collection had been previously moved to less vulnerable locations.
The Steble Fountain stands in William Brown Street, Liverpool, England, to the west of Wellington’s Column. It has been designated by English Heritage as a Grade II* listed building. It was donated to the city by a former mayor to fill a vacant plot to the west of the column. The fountain is constructed in cast iron with some bronze fittings. At the base of the fountain is a circular basin with a diameter of 30 feet (9.1 m). From the centre of the basin rises an octagonal stem on acruciform base with the statue of a marine god at each corner. These statues depict Neptune, Amphitrite, Acis, and Galatea. Above this is a shallow octagonal bowl with a diameter of 12 feet 6 inches (3.8 m). It has 16 overflow outlets; these are decorated with scallops, Lancastrian roses, and marine grotesques. From the centre of this bowl rises another bowl about 8 feet (2.4 m) in diameter. This is surmounted by a mermaid holding a cornucopia. The total height of the fountain is 23 feet (7.0 m)
Wellington’s Column, or the Waterloo Memorial, is a monument to the Duke of Wellington standing on the corner of William Brown Street and Lime Street, Liverpool,. It has been designated byEnglish Heritage as a Grade II* listed building. After the Duke’s death in 1852, in common with other cities, Liverpool decided to erect a monument to celebrate his achievements. The foundations of the monument are in Runcorn sandstone, the pedestal is in granite, and the column itself is in Darley Dale stone. The overall height of the monument is 132 feet (40.2 m), the column being 81 feet (24.7 m) high and the statue 25 feet (7.6 m) high. It stands on a stepped base with a square pedestal. On each side of the pedestal is a bronze plaque; at the corners are bronze eagles joined by swagsalong the sides. Standing on the pedestal is a Roman Doric fluted column. Within the column are 169 steps leading up to a viewing platform. On top of the column is a cylinder surmounted by a cupola on which the bronze statue of the Duke stands.The statue is made from the melted-down bronze from cannons captured at the Battle of Waterloo. The Duke holds a scroll in his right hand, and his left hand rest on the hilt of his sword.
The statue is unusual in that it does not face any major civic building or thoroughfare (as does Nelson’s Column in London). The statue was positioned facing south-east so that Wellington would always be looking towards the site of Waterloo – considered his greatest victory.
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