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The Tale of Dale Street and it’s emerging ‘Beer Quarter’

The city of Liverpool often gets compared with New York and for a variety of reasons. Some like to hark back to headlines of how the city was to become twinned with NYC back in the late nineties. It’s also partly down to John Lennon’s love affair with both.

One of New York’s most famous streets, Wall Street, contains eight blocks, not dissimilar to the number of streets in a part of Liverpool’s business improvement district (BID) that contains a different, historic, libation-led buzz compared with the financial dealings of its stateside counterpart.

The newly named ‘Beer Quarter’ donned by local publicans and situated off Dale Street has a long history as a vicinity too. It was first mentioned in a deed of 1328, in the reign of Edward 111.

Back in the day, it consisted of dwellings with gardens in the rear. Gradually these plots became used for other purposes and provided the structure for Liverpool’s business district layout in the early 18th century running along Dale Street.

If you speak with punters in the know in many a hostelry nearby, “the streets leading off it were the real building blocks of the area and the city.”

As landlady Fiona Hornsby of The Denbigh Castle remarked:

“They were lined with numerous coaching houses and inns for the many travelers coming in and out of Liverpool on business.”

Fast forward a few hundred years, and there are still many character-filled pubs in the area lending much to the city’s heritage.

Given the enchanting nature of the conviviality and tales shared in these houses of high repute, there’s a strength of community that might be regarded as somewhat old-fashioned in other parts of the UK and most certainly parts of New York too.

But not in Liverpool. Liverpool thrives on community. It’s in its DNA…handy, given how the Pandemic and working from home has challenged footfall in the area.

Now a group of like-minded landlords and landladies have got together to stage a celebration weekend later this month to serve as a toast and awareness campaign to Merseysiders and huge numbers of tourists alike.

Fiona continued:

“We’re acutely aware of the dismal headlines about 70% of pubs potentially falling this winter. Our ambition and focus is to retain all of our pubs in this great city of ours and especially in this area because what would Liverpool be like without them. It’s almost unimaginable looking back over our three decades of experience in the industry.

“We thought that collaborating together and establishing a Beer Quarter* would reaffirm the area’s canny ability to provide the kind of quality entertainment that is unique to the great British pub, albeit with a Scouse twist.”

Beer Quarter celebrations take place over the weekend of the 23rd – 25th September with all participating pubs running a fun weekend of live music, comedy, karaoke, pub games, beer tastings, ‘meet the brewer’ and special food offerings.

The menu of those pubs, all independent, taking part in the weekend-long event includes The Ship and Mitre, The Excelsior, Dead Crafty Beer Company, The Angus Tap & Grind, The Vernon Arms, The Saddle, The Denbigh Castle, The Lion Tavern, The Cross Keys and Shenanigans.