Sunday, 24 February 2013

A Liverpool Mystery

I've been writing, writing and writing but last week, I took a day out and went exploring with the family. We went over to Liverpool and the Williamson Tunnels. My pictures don't do it justice!

This network of tunnels snakes its way beneath the Edge Hill area of Liverpool. Nobody is sure why Joseph Williamson had them constructed but it created much-needed employment as soldiers returned from the Napoleonic Wars and hit the Hard Times of Olde England. The wars crippled the country's economy and the explosion of Mount Tambora in Indonesia caused the Year without Summer in 1816. Famine and poverty stalked the land. 

In one way, it would make sense for Williamson to find employment for the poor and dispossessed in the area. This was a time of unrest and people feared revolution and the tunnels employed whole families in making bricks and taught them transferable skills. 

But nobody really knows why Williamson commissioned the building and, despite there being piles of documentation about other aspects of his life, there is absolutely none connected with the tunnels. So nobody really knows why the tunnels were built or how extensive they were. I can well imagine Prince Dakkar paying Joseph Williamson a visit...

The Tunnels website tells you more. I'd thoroughly recommend a visit!