Friday, July 15, 2016

Five on Friday

It's Friday so once again I'm joining in with  Amy at Love Made my Home for this week's Five on Friday. 
During our time on the Wirrall a couple of weeks ago now - how time flies! - we visited Birkenhead Priory.

The first part of the building you see is the tower which belonged to St Mary's Church which was built next to the priory ruins and opened in 1821.  The Tower was saved from demolition in 1975 and it was dedicated as a memorial to the submarine HMS Thetis.

Apparently the tower has amazing views across the River Mersey and the Cammell Laird shipyards but unfortunately for us, but not for the participants who were having a great time,  there was an abseiling event happening whilst we were there so we never got up to the top of the tower.
The church was demolished in 1971 except for the tower and the west walls which you can see in the photos above and the one below.


In 1962 the nearby Princess Dock opened incorporating part of St Mary's Churchyard.

The Priory was founded by Benedictine monks c. 1150 the first phase of building included the Chapter House, later in the 1300s a Frater Range and Scriptorium were added.

The priory closed in 1536 a victim of King Henry VIII's  Dissolution of the Monasteries.

There is a small Museum  in the undercroft of the Frater Range which was fascinating to walk around.

Five facts gleaned from our visit

1.  The name Birkenhead is from the old English Bircen Heafod which means a headland growing with Birch trees.

2.  In September 1275 King Edward I visited the priory. the Royal household stayed at the Priory for eight days.  King Edward returned to the priory in 1277 for a further six days.  Apparently his visits cost the Priory £72 7s 5d about £40,000 in today's money.

3. For 400 years the monks of the priory as well as worshipping there also farmed the land, welcomed travellers and operated a ferry across the river Mersey to Liverpool. 

4. Built in 1150 the Priory is the oldest standing building on Merseyside and it encapsulates the town's history within its small, enclosed site.

5.  The layout of the Priory was most unusual in that the cloister and other monastic buildings were located north of the Priory Church instead of the usual south.


Whilst in Birkenhead we also visited the wonderful Williamson Art Gallery which houses a huge collection of the local Art and Crafts movement Della Robbia pottery founded in the town by Harold Steward Rathbone.
 
Click on the link below to find other bloggers who are joining in with 



 I hope, wherever you are, you have a lovely weekend.

48 comments:

  1. Four years I lived in Liverpool and never knew that was there! Thanks for the tour. I've been thinking of having a trip to the Wirral. This might well be on the list of things to see.

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    1. We loved it on the Wirral there was such a lot to see and also close to Liverpool and easy to get to without the car:)

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  2. How interesting and atmospheric, good job they didn't demolish all of it. Pity you couldn't get to the top of the tower but it's a good excuse to go back there when you're next in the area when it might be a sunnier day. :-)

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    1. It would have been great to go up and see the views but I may not have managed the 120+ steps so I didn't have to try:)

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  3. It's amazing how much of the priory remains as there appears to be a lot of good building stone in those walls; in many places it would have been plundered long ago for other buildings. I've never visited Birkenhead and had a rather different picture of it in my mind.

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    1. The picture in your mind may be correct in some areas but the Art Gallery and the Priory were wonderful, we didin't get to the Transport Museum which was only open at weekends:)

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  4. Head land growing with birch trees love that fact, will tell my husband x

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    1. The origins of some of our place names are fascinating aren't they?:)

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  5. And the monks operated the ferry to Eastham where I live, a few miles down stream. I have not been to the priory for years, I must rectify that soon. Let me know if you ever pop up this way again Rosie, we always have the kettle on. Have a great weekend xx

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    1. Good for the monks, they must have helped no end of folks get about their business. How kind of you, if we come your way again I will let you know, have a lovely weekend:)

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  6. What a fascinating place. I like the look of that undercroft museum. Priories hold such interesting history and you wonder if Henry VIII hadn't had his way what would they be like today. B x

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    1. It is a thought isn't it? The country would be compleely different. The Museum was fascinating I'd have liked more time but there were so many people around so we whipped in and out again so as not to be in the way:)

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  7. Have enjoyed looking round with you...interesting place..
    Amanda xx

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  8. What a fantastic tour guide you are, you've made me want to visit the priory myself one day. You certainly had the right sort of weather for your visit the glowering clouds make everything look even more atmospheric.

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    1. It was quite a glowering day but at least dry the day before was so wet, we spent it wandering around art galleries and shops just to get out of the rain:)

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  9. What an interesting church and priory - so enjoyed reading all about them and the museum looks great!

    Have a wonderful weekend.

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    1. Yes, it was fascinating to see the old building amongst all the industrial buildings around it, glad it has survived as it is:)

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  10. It looks like a lovely place to visit. It's great that there are still remains left. I enjoyed your Five fun facts. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Glad you enjoyed the post, Sharon:)

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  11. I love the shape of the windows and the ruins. So beautiful. Thank you for sharing - have a great weekend!

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    1. I always love the windows and doorways in any ruins,it's so fascinating to see how the place was laid out:)

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  12. You took us on a wonderful tour, what a fascinating place to visit.

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    1. Glad you enjoyed it, the priory is very interesting:)

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  13. I wonder what it was like when the monks lived and worked there farming the land. I sometimes wish I could lock myself away in a monastery although I did once live on a council housing estate called Priory court! Have a great weekend Rosie.x

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    1. Ha Ha - was there a Priory there in ancient times? I grew up on a council estate too, albeit a small village one of about 20 houses. I always think of priories as complete worlds of their own as the monks were almost self sufficient:)

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  14. Lovely pictures Rosie - I have never visited a priory it looks fascinating. Have a lovely weekend.

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    1. It is a fascinating place Elaine though not as glamorous or stately as some of the priory ruins that you can visit across the country:)

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  15. Fascinating! The pictures are wonderful and I really enjoyed the five facts too, good to learn more. It is such a shame that the church was demolished and so recently too really, but at least the tower is still there. That is a good thing isn't it. Thank you for taking us along! Thank you for joining Five On Friday, I hope you have a great weekend! xx

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    1. Thanks, Amy glad you enjoyed the tour. I always look forward to Five on Friday thank you for continuing with it, hope you too have a great weekend:)

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  16. Lovely, fascinating tour of Birkenhead Priory. Thank you!

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  17. Wonderful information about this priory along with your great photos. Hope you have a good weekend.

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  18. Wouldn't it be interesting if the walls could talk in such a place and tell us even more of the lives of those who first lived there? Thanks for sharing what you learned on your tour. When I was 16 I was allowed to climb up into a church bell tower in an old church in Newburyport, Massachusetts...I was so glad to get out in the fresh air at the top and see above the rooftops of the town! I can't imagine climbing up there now at age 65 :) Did you ever work at Tattershall Castle in Lincolnshire?

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    1. I love looking down on the rooftops of a town or village, your view must have been wonderful. I never worked at Tattershall Castle but have visited a few times. I worked further south in Lincolnshire at a 15th century red brick house on the side of the river in Spalding built at a similar time to Tattershall, it's called Ayscoughfee Hall:)

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  19. I'm visiting from Amy's Five on Friday. I live in the countryside of Oregon, USA. I live in a 100 year old farmhouse and raise chickens and our son, DIL and 2 grandsons live with us. Great photos you posted!

    Thanks for sharing your gorgeous historic places.

    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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    1. Your family farmhouse home sounds wonderful. Glad you enjoyed the photos, thanks for visiting:)

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  20. I love to see old ruins like this. Thanks for all the great info about the priory.

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    1. Hello and welcome, glad you enjoyed reading about the Priory:)

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  21. Thanks for an interesting post. I always have a fascination for old ruins such as this. May visit it one time if ever I am that way. Leah x

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    1. It is only small but well worth a visit especially combined with the Williamson Art Gallery:)

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  22. These old ruins have such stories to tell. Thank you for the great photos and interesting facts.

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    1. They do don't they? If only stones could speak. Glad you enjoyed the post:)

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  23. I love traveling with other bloggers by way of the internet. Thank you for my visit to The Priory. I'd never have seen it without your camera.

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    1. It is fun seeing all the different places in the world blogers travel to isn't it? Glad you enjoyed your visit:)

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  24. Hi Rosie,I love your post very much and I intend to show it in class next month.This month we are on winter holidays in Brazil. Thanks for sharing with us.

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    1. Thank you Sandra, I hope your class enjoy the photos:)

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