The Three Graces

Liverpool’s Historic Waterfront is dominated by the Three Graces; The Royal Liver building, The Cunard Building and The Port of Liverpool Building.

The Royal Liver Building

Royal Liver Building, Liverpool

The Royal Liver Building stands to the left, with Liverpool’s fabled liver birds nested on top. The two birds face away from each other -it is said that the female is watching the river to welcome home the sailors, whilst the male is watching the city to see when the pub will open!

The birds are 18 ft high, their heads are 31/2 ft long, the spread of the wings is 12 ft, their length is 10 ft and the legs are 2ft in circumference.

This was the first skyscraper in the world and houses the head offices of the Royal Liver Friendly Society, which had its origins as a mid-19th century burial club. Each of the four numeral-less clock faces that adorn the tower are 25 feet,  or 7.62 metres in diameter, and before one of them was put in place it was used as a table to serve forty people lunch.

The Cunard Building

Cunard Building, LiverpoolThe Cunard Building was the Headquarters and main passenger terminal for the world’s most famous shipping company, the Cunard Steamship Company.

Built between 1914 and 1917, it was the last of the Three Graces to be constructed and as it had to fit into the gap between its two sisters, it is 30ft wider at the inland side.

The lower floors of the building were utilised for passenger facilities both ahead of, and following, their departure/arrival on the Cunard passenger liners in Liverpool. A range of facilities were in place within the building including first, second and third class passenger waiting rooms and canteens, storage facilities for customers luggage and facilities for the Cunard employees based both on land and at sea.

The Port of Liverpool Building

Port of Liverpool Building, LiverpoolCompleted in 1907, The Port of Liverpool Building was erected as the head office of the Mersey Docks and Harbour Board. The building was significantly damaged in the Blitz of World War II and the whole  of the eastern side had to be reconstructed – a project which cost significantly more than the original build.