<-- Google Analytics START --> <-- Google Analytics END -->

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

    Thursday, October 12, 2006
    Free thinking in the city of dreams

    Harry Hopkins' rich description of life in Littlewoods Pools, Walton Hall Avenue, circa 1954 is proof (though I don't need it, I hear it in conversation everyday) that the women of this part of Liverpool were once at the hub of a nation's obsession, arbiters of a people's fortunes, clocked-on keepers of a country's dreams. He devotes 31 pages to Liverpool in the book, England is Rich, which demonstrate to me that Hopkins' journey through fifties Britain is well worth revisiting, not only to ponder what happened to the dreams and aspirations of the place in intervening years, but also to consider if there is anything in them which might offer direction for future hopes.

    Hopkins' book came to me (thanks to John and Cathy Rogers) in the same week that I booked tickets to hear the relentless experimentalist Brian Eno launch Liverpool's Free Thinking Festival with a lecture, at the start of a weekend of free talks, debates, interviews and performances across the city 'exploring the ideas that will change the way we live'. It's on 3-5 November and looks virtually compulsory for any aspiring contemporary Harry Hopkinses.