New Liverpool music and history walking tours will show Eurovision fans our amazing heritage
2 months ago
Two new walking tours honouring Liverpool’s origins and its amazing music heritage are launching ahead of Eurovision.
Fans flocking to the city for Eurovision will be able to find out more about its history, and also music influences beyond The Beatles.
John Maguire, creative director of Arts Groupie which is running the tours, says they’ll give a great insight for not only visitors but Scousers too.
He says the idea for the history one came from another of their most popular walks, the Liver Bird Safari.
“What we’ve found with the Liver Bird Safari is that it can be a bit ambiguous if you’re not from Liverpool — we’ve had international visitors come on it expecting to see real birds!” says John. “So we started asking people what they thought would be good and a lot of them said they wanted just a basic history which would include things like where did Liverpool begin, the old dock, and the castle.
“We wanted to create a Beginner’s Guide to Liverpool so, if someone’s coming to Liverpool for Eurovision or later in the summer, this will really help them to quickly orientate themselves in the city.
“It will start at the Bluecoat and take in the old dock, Albert Dock, Pier Head, St Nicholas’s Church, down Dale Street and finishing off in St George’s quarter which gives people plenty of things to participate in because we know there’ll be lots of Eurovision events happening in that area in May.”
The second new tour, the Mersey Music History Tour, spotlights some of the great music that’s come out of the city, taking in far more than the Fab Four landmarks.
John explains: “People always think of Liverpool and The Beatles when they think of our music heritage but Liverpool is so much more than that. There’s music coming from the black influence, the influence of America, then going up to all the artists who played at The Cavern, Eric’s, punk and the 80s queer pop.
“You’ve got places like Cream, 81 Renshaw St which was the headquarters of Merseybeat, the Empire where so many huge stars performed and Probe Records where we’re thinking of ending the tour.
“It’s amazing how much music history we’ve got in this city so it’s been really interesting to research and bring that all together.”
John hopes to share some interesting music facts too which people might not know – like the meanings behind the hidden symbols on the Beatles Pier Head statue, or the story of Liverpool singer Lita Roza’s bid to represent the UK in Eurovision.
Both the Beginner’s Guide to Liverpool and the Mersey Music History Tour launch on Easter weekend, with the first walks on Good Friday, Easter Saturday and Sunday. They’ll then be fortnightly although during Eurovision on the Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday when the semi finals and final takes place there’ll be an extra two music walks each day.
Alongside its programme of tours, Arts Groupie – which is predominantly a theatre company – will also be back in Calderstones Park performing a play for kids this summer and at Shakespeare North Playhouse with a play about William Roscoe.