"I now live in Melbourne, Australia, but come from a Wavertree family who as far as I know lived there back into the early 1800's and possibly earlier. I have pretty vivid memories of growing up there in the late 1940's and fifties, into the sixties, living in 'the Groves' at the same time as George Harrison, and going to the same school that my grandfather, mother and uncles attended. Best wishes and keep up the good work, it's great to see that all those amazing old places are being defended at last.
"By the way - is the old smithy at the back of the High Street (the cobbled passage that used to be called 'the stumps') still there? It was run by Jack Lowe, who still did some of that work when I lived there as a child, just after the war, though by that time most of his income was from his coal merchant business. My uncle, who lives here in Melbourne, remembers, as a youngster, in the '30s doing odd jobs for Jack and remembers, clearly, handling a big horse, Jack's pride and joy, called 'Duke'. Jack was well known throughout Wavertree and the stables were still well used when I was a child.
"I imagine that the name 'the stumps' comes from the remnants of gate-posts that were still at the top of the passage up until the 1950s. There was also an ancient cart at the top of the passage, by Frederick Grove, which we all played on as kids. On the opposite side of the alley was a timber store, the sound of big industrial saws could be heard all day, particularly during the summer and at the bottom, on the corner of the High Street, was the dairy - I think it was Hanson's. You could get brilliant ice cream there and it was always wonderfully cool in the summer!"