Hope Street was voted and awarded the ‘Best Street in the UK’ and it’s easy to see why. It boasts two Cathedrals, an award winning theatre, art deco concert hall together with a wide range of independent restaurants and bars. At one end of Hope Street you will see Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral, the largest in Britain – it’s impossible to miss it’s beauty. It is free to enter and the building is even more awe inspiring from the inside. Elegant Georgian houses line the pathways off Hope Street, making it one of the finest Georgian streetscapes to explore in the UK. However, in its 200-years history, Hope Street’s 600-yard length has also seen a hospital and homeopathic dispensary, a number of churches, an art school including high school for girls.
But, besides its public life, Hope Street has always been a place to live, the focus of an area of elegant squares and streets which were originally the homes of the prosperous middle classes. As time goes on, such households moved to the outer suburbs or to the Wirral and the substantial houses were converted to flats and bed-sits. In the mid-twentieth century, the proximity of this area to the College of Art and to the University gave it an honour as the focus of Liverpool’s artistic and bohemian community. Indeed, in 1967, the Liverpool Daily Post make known that “no other city in Britain (also London) has an area with such a high density of artistic and intellectual talent”.
In the 21st century, Hope Street’s strong physical character and high quality architecture have led to a renewed recognition as a significant place within Liverpool. Indeed, in recent years, there has been a yearly festival celebrating the Street. This article by Niall McChesney is about the people who lived in the residential properties of Hope Street during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
If you are looking for somewhere to enjoy a taste of independent Liverpool, Hope Street is home to a number of delicious dining options. Check out HoSt for a taste of pan Asian cuisine, which is inspired by South of Houston and North of Houston Street, 2 of the most fashionable parts of New York
A short walk away is The Philharmonic Hall, which is home to the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra; the oldest surviving professional symphony orchestra. Just opposite is The Philharmonic Dining Rooms, a Grade II listed building that is known to be the most richly decorated Victorian public house in Liverpool. It is well known that the bathrooms are the most ornate in Liverpool!
If that is not enough entertainment for one street, here you’ll find a winner of the RIBA Stirling Prize, the Everyman Theatre. Above the iconic ‘Everyman’ sign on the building you will see 105 portraits of people from Merseyside. Just next door, you will find the Pen Factory which is a fine example of Liverpool’s independent restaurant scene, perfect for a pre-show lunch or a drink with friends.
This is also where you will find Liverpool’s second cathedral, the Metropolitan Cathedral, also known as ‘Paddy’s Wigwam’ – another architectural gem to explore at the heart of the city.