Sunday, 30 May 2010

St Helens

A rainy day in St Helens, viewed from the bus station while we waited to go to the St Helens Rugby League ground, full of optimism, well OK a pinch of optimism, as this Super League team were Barrow Raiders (a second tier club), opponents in the Challenge Cup quarter finals.
A 'Go Penguin' of Johnny Vegas, comedian and famous supporter of St Helens wearing the kit. These penguins were part of Liverpool's 2009 finale to the Year of the Environment used as a fun way to highlight the impact we all have on  climate change. I have not seen any left in Liverpool but St Helens seem to have taken them to their heart.
Haydock Park (the racecourse) penguin showing its Lancashire rose and Penguinelena from the back.  I took these on the way back, as you can see it has now stopped raining.
After lunch in order to keep out of the rain before going to the match we found the North west Museum of Road Transport  It accounts for 10% of the nations surviving stock of preserved buses and coaches. It is one of those enthusiast museums where they just love the objects and cram as much as possible into the space. They pressed an events list on us when they take these buses out for a ride, didn't have the heart to say we were just visiting the town for a day.
A lot of the old industrial Northwest towns now have soulless shopping centres but some of the fine old buildings still survive.  Here is the Beecham's building, manufacturer of pills and potions in times past,
 and its clock tower. It is now a centre for arts and design.

On the way home changing at Preston, with some of the 2000 Raider fans who had travelled south only to return home loosing 32-12, but not downhearted because we never expected to win.  I was rather in a win-win situation as although my local team is Barrow, my Super League team is St Helens.  This may be my last to visit Knowsley Road, home of St Helens since 1890, as they are due to move to a new stadium next year.

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