Liverpool’s connection to Doctor Who is, perhaps unsurprisingly, largely uncelebrated but it’s worth noting that three of the show’s biggest names hail from the city.

Tom Baker’s riotous autobiography is full of recollections of corner pubs and the whiff of incense from Catholic churches, while it may be less surprising for people to know that Paul McGann, who played the eighth incarnation is also from Liverpool, along with his many brothers.

But Lis Sladen, a screen companion to third, fourth, tenth and eleventh Doctors was also born in Liverpool and her character even got a spin-off show, The Sarah-Jane Adventures, on CBBC. Sadly Sladen died in 2010, but her connection to the city has been immortalised as part of a project to improve an underpass in Aigburth by local artist Nicola Taggart.

Gary Steele from the South Neighbourhood Team initiated the idea last year with the backing of local Ward Councillor Patrick Hurley, with the installation of the artwork being carried out by social enterprise Jigsaw.

Nicola carried out a number of workshops in the area which involved working alongside local residents groups and Sudley School to gather ideas for the artwork, with Sladen appearing due to her attendance at a local school in Aigburth Vale.

The underpass, which links Aigburth Road from Jericho Lane to Ashfield Road, has previously been blighted with graffiti in the past and has also received a much-needed lick of paint.

“The subway has been in a bad way for too long, and I’m hopeful that by improving  lighting and security,  and by getting the local community involved in creating some superb  artwork for the subway walls, it will be a better used and safer environment for local people,’ said Patrick Hurley.

The new artwork will be unveiled tomorrow (Friday 26 April) but you can get a sneak peak above.

6 Responses to “Aigburth underpass gets a cosmic makeover”

  1. If it’s maintained, it may fare better than a very similar project that took place with the underpass that used to be further towards the town end of Aigburth Road – the now defunkt and filled in underpass that came out b Lark Lane had paintings chosen and painted by local kids of the day back in the mid-to-late 70’s. The thought was local kids would not scrawl over their own pictures and would protect them – they lasted a few years before they were covered in graffitti. Nice idea, but no real follow through, the rest of the kids that didn’t paint them got petty about it and started drawing on them quite soon after completion with the usual sort of thing such as moustache and beards appearing first.

    When all is said and done, although it is nice to try and keep a place looking good – it is far more important to make it safe – not that they are mutually exclusive, of course. However, it is something which I never saw really happening when I lived around the area – the underpass was something to run through as quickly as possible as it got dark, or avoided altogether!

    I hope I’m wrong and this does brighten the palce up – and it is nice it celebrates local talent. Fingers crossed!

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