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Further maritime reminiscences .... the green gates pictured below, with the famous liver bird inherent within the design, originally stood outside the Seamen's Mission in Liverpool. They were apparently taken away for restoration in 1951 and spent the next 60 years languishing in a foundry in the West Midlands, until a campaign was launched to have them restored and returned in 2011 - they now stand in the centre of Liverpool close to the original site of the Seamen's Mission.

Also shown below - Albion House (sometimes known as the White Star Building), located on James Street just behind the Pierhead Building, was built between 1896 and 1898 as offices for a shipping company that later became the White Star Line. I know it as Albion House, and this was the headquarters of Blue Star Line, my former employer. This fine building has unfortunately been empty for several years, but it is a Grade II listed building and a local landmark with such a prominent merchant shipping history that hopefully it will escape demolition. Within Blue Star, it was sometimes referred to as Corned Beef Castle, a reference to the fact that the Vestey empire, of which Blue Star Line was a part, had its foundations in the import of corned beef from Argentina and Uruguay.

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Further on a walk of several urban kilometres, there are views of the area around the Albert Dock, the Pierhead building, and the newly constructed section of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal linking the northern docks with Albert Dock.

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