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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Tuesday, September 23, 2003
    Light up Liverpool
    The Liverpool Culture 2008 team are promoting a competition to find six landmarks / beauty spots to illuminate thanks to a £40,000 grant. I reckon Holy Trinity would be worth entering; it's very visible, especially to inward-bound rail passengers as the train begins that great sweep north-westwards into Lime Street tunnels, and, having passed (perhaps unknowingly) under the Penny Lane bridge they look across the green of The Mystery, with Trinity and The Blue Coat School at its edge.

    But now my mind's turning to other ideas - how about illuminating the larger-than-life Dixie Dean statue at the end of Goodison Road (perhaps the guy was that big - in which case no wonder he was the greatest centre-forward ever)? Or, more poignantly, the Hillsborough memorial at Anfield? How about illuminating the streets for a change, that'd be bleedin' useful?

    The majestic wind turbines at Seaforth Docks would merit it, or the trees on top of Everton Brow, the city's finest vantage point. On reflection, my vote would have to be for the SuperLambBanana, my favourite piece of Liverpool public art. I love it, passive token of wit and wonder, totem of our GM age. It greets thousands of dock road passers-by each day. And, nicely lit, it would gleam wonderfully for them through the night.

      But I wonder ... because like every other city (as this night view over Europe shows) it seems Liverpool's very well lit already. Probably over-illuminated. There's something about the silhouette of the late-evening skyline just now, dark clouds merging with steeples and towerblocks, a red, blue, grey mix behind. There's something about standing in the pub car park, as we did on Sunday, 10.30, gazing through the light-haze at the stars. And there was something awesome about the rainbow over the city after the sudden downpour an hour ago which no artificial light could match. I wonder .... at lights like that.