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Honorary Scousers Moved by Liverpool’s Surprising Beauty

Written by The Reader, 19th May 2011

Yesterday, following our Reading for Wellbeing Conference, TRO's Director, Jane Davis, took Marilynne Robinson and Maryanne Wolf on a tour of Liverpool. While Marilynne and Maryanne were moved by the tour, Jane was staggered to realise how much she didn't know about her home city.

Jane who has lived in Liverpool for 45 years had hardly any knowledge of the city's deep relation to slavery until she booked Marilynne and Maryanne on Eric Lynch's wonderful walking tour of the city. "If you have read Gilead you will know what I mean when I say it reminded me of the burned out Negro church", said Jane, "I think every Scouser should take Mr Lynch's tour."
Both Marilynne and Maryanne were as moved as Jane was by the experience. "And of course it is Liverpool so we had a good laugh too" said Jane, "especially watching Mr Lynch trying to keep the irrepressible Maryanne in order!"
The photos and captions below should give you a little taste of it all (and thanks Dave for organising it):

Marilynne, Maryanne and Eric on the tour

"Every major city should have an Eric," Marilynne Robinson

Walking through Sefton Park's 'Fairy Dell'

Maryanne shows of her reading skills in Sefton Park's Palm House

Maryanne was particularly amazed by this blue Bird of Paradise, "I've never seen anything like it!"
Marilynne and Maryanne were delighted by the Palm House and deeply moved to learn how local people saved it

3 thoughts on “Honorary Scousers Moved by Liverpool’s Surprising Beauty

I used to live near Liverpool and love visiting it. I did know about the links with slavery – but the tour sounds great! And I’ve never been to the palm house (shame).

Sue Garner-Jones says:

Ooh, touchy territory! Scousers are born not bred, I’m afraid – you can admire us and our city but unless you entered the world in ‘the ‘pool’ you’re not a real ‘Scouser’! In fact, even if you move a few miles down the road (as I have) you’re considered a traitor and as for living ‘over the water’ – ‘Scousers’? Nah, ‘posh tourists’!

davecookson says:

I’m really glad Jane, Marilynne and Maryanne enjoyed the tour. Credit should also go to Michele, Charlotte and Rob who were a massive help in putting it together.

Just researching and putting this tour together taught me an awful lot about Liverpool too. Although when people around the world hear about Liverpool they probably think ‘The Beatles’ instantly, the city has a significant history that far precedes that and it was difficult trying to condense everything into just one day!

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