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Old Dock, Liverpool

Old Dock opened in 1715: it was the the world’s first commercial enclosed wet dock and the catalyst for the growth of Liverpool into one of the world’s greatest international seaports. It was infilled in 1820 but rediscovered in 2002 during archaeological evaluations in advance of the construction of Grosvenors Liverpool One retail development.

As a planning requirement, the buried quay walls of Old Dock were fully preserved in situ and a corner of the dock was excavated.

An underground visitor centre was created (see http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/maritime/visit/old_dock_tours.aspx)

and Old Dock was interpreted above ground with:

- a viewing port-hole to arouse the curiosity of pedestrians who might unknowingly walk over the site

- a line of darker paving directly                                                                                    over the north quay

                                                                - a line of variable fountains in                                                                                    the paving to symbolise the                                                                                    rise and fall of the tide  

                                                                - inscriptions in the paving to                                                                                    celebrate the tidal studies of                                                                                    William Hutchinson, the dock                                                                                    master 1759-1793