'OLD WOOLTON' by Frank Cain
On Tuesday December 7th, we were entertained to a pictorial journey stretching nearly 900 years by Frank Cain. Frank asked us to imagine we were on a bus journey through Woolton and its surrounding hamlets of Speke, Hale, Garston and Gateacre - and we travelled with him from the 12th century to the eve of the new millennium.
And what a fascinating journey it was. Present-day MTL could not possibly compete. We met John Constable, Lord of Halton and Widnes, the Knights of St John, soldiers, scholars, French prisoners-of-war, mill owners, the landed gentry, Todds, Reynolds, Gascoynes, Benedictines, King John and a host of other notables. We were not too surprised to learn that Woolton used to have 40 pubs and that the Law was keeping a close eye on them. The Police Station was next to the White Horse.
Humour and history kept the large audience spellbound. We heard how Frank had persuaded a bus driver to stop his bus - on which Frank was travelling - so that Frank could attend to a man who had, apparently, fainted on the sidewalk along Menlove Avenue. The Good Samaritan found that his help was not required: the man was merely clearing a drain and had his arm down a grid.
Frank can be certain that, if he brings his bus down Gateacre Brow again, he will have no shortage of passengers.


Speaking of which ...
Merseytravel's JUPITER 2 project (Joint Urban Project in Transport Energy Reduction) - which is partly funded by the European Union - has resulted in a revamp of the 173 and 174 bus services which pass through Gateacre Village. The new 'eco-friendly' buses have low-sulphur diesel engines, exhaust filters, low-step entrances and buggy/wheelchair ramps.
Service 174 runs from Belle Vale to Penny Lane via Gateacre Park Drive and Childwall Fiveways: passing through Gateacre Village at about 7 and 37 minutes past each hour every day, from 6.07 am (Mon-Sat) and 10.37 am (Sun) until 11.07 pm. We have been asked to publicise the service, and to invite feedback from members. Our immediate comment was that the new timetable needs more publicity: details of the service are not even displayed at local bus stops.


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Page created 16 Jan 2000 by MRC.  Amended 25 Jan 2000.