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Social programme

The University of Liverpool has requested that we remind all delegates that you should have adequate individual liability insurance cover while you are attending the event in Liverpool from 15-18 July 2009.

Liverpool is one of the UK’s leading centres for learning, entertainment, culture, sport and endeavour. Delegates will be well placed to explore the rich heritage and many attractions of this diverse, energetic and exciting city, where there is something for everyone.

Opening Reception
Following the Opening Plenary a welcoming reception will be held in the Crypt of the Metropolitan Cathedral, opposite the Victoria Building and only 5 minutes walk from the Sherrington Lecture Theatre where the opening plenary will be held.  Volunteers will be available to guide you to the venue.  We anticipate that the opening reception will start at around 6.00pm and continue until about 8.30pm.

Formal Dinner

Sefton Park Palm House photo courtesy of Sefton Park Palm House Preservation Trust

The Congress Dinner will be held on Friday 17 July in Sefton Park Palm House, a Grade II listed Victorian glasshouse, set within the broad sweeps and leafy glens of Sefton Park.

In recent years the Palm House has been lovingly restored by the Sefton Park Palm House Preservation Trust and will provide a memorable location for the Congress dinner. Numbers are limited and participation requires the payment of an additional fee. For further details of the venue, please see their website:

The evening will start with a welcoming drink from 7.15pm and dinner will be served from 8.15 pm. A fleet of coaches will leave from Abercromby Square, Oxford Road from 7.00pm with the last coach leaving about 7.30pm. Following the dinner, coaches will return the delegates to Abercromby Square.

River Mersey Cruise

River Mersey Ferry photo courtesy of

A Mersey Ferry will be a truly distinctive venue for the final evening of the Congress. The river cruise  will provide a unique atmosphere, with spectacular views and photo opportunities of the world-famous Mersey Waterfront.


The event will take place on the evening of Saturday 18th July, there is no extra charge for this event but numbers will be limited.

It is important to note that delegates need to make their own catering arrangements before boarding the ferry as food will not be available aboard, although a welcome drink will be provided and there is a cash bar available during the cruise.

The ferry will depart at 8.30pm sharp and you need to have boarded by 8.15pm at the latest. The meeting point is Pier Head in front of the “three Graces” (the Liver, Cunard and Mersey Docks and Harbour Buildings), and where a new cruise terminal has recently been opened. We will be looking to return to Pier Head by about 10.30-11.00pm.

For further details of River Mersey Ferries please see their website:

Accompanying Persons Programme

As well as being able to attend the social events of the main programme we have developed a specific programme for accompanying persons. With a qualified tour guide you will be able to explore both Liverpool and some of the surrounding areas of Wirral and Chester. The programme will last for one and a half days which will also provide plenty of opportunity for you to explore particular parts of the city in greater depth. The tours will start from the Foyer of the Department of Civic Design at 9.30am on Thursday 16th and Friday 17th July. The tours have been organised and will be led by David Bamber and will also feature local tour guides.

Thursday, 16th July Liverpool (half day)
This tour is designed to provide you with an introduction to Liverpool, past present and future

9.30  Leave the Department of Civic Design

10.00  Liverpool Cathedral – tour and Tower Experience with Cathedral Guide

11.30  Coach tour  of Liverpool  including Hope Street area with both cathedrals, Cultural Quarter with St George’s Hall, and the waterfront) and a brief visit to the Sefton Park Palm House. 

1.00  Return to the Department of Civic Design

Friday, 17th July Port Sunlight and Chester (full day)

 9.30  Leave the Department of Civic Design.  Commentary en route to:

10.00  Port Sunlight.  Short coach tour of the village and visit to Lady Lever Gallery.  Commentary by local guide.  Coffee and biscuits before leaving for Chester

12.00  Chester for a walking tour with commentary by local guide

2.00  Free time in Chester for lunch and shopping

3.30  Depart Chester

4.30  Drop off at Civic Design

Post Congress tour to the English Lake District

On Sunday 19th July we have organised a Post-Congress Tour by coach to the English Lake District. The tour is available for an additional fee, although places are restricted to 50.

You will depart from Liverpool city centre (outside St George’s Hall, Lime Street) at  8.30am. This full day excursion provides delegates with the opportunity to visit one of the most beautiful of England’s National Parks. You will drive to the picturesque village of Grasmere, where you will have an opportunity to stroll through the village or around the lake lunch will be provided at Villa Columbina (by the Wordsworth Museum) at 12.00. You will then have a tour of Dove Cottage and the Wordsworth Museum before moving onto Ambleside for a leisurely cruise on England’s largest lake, Lake Windermere. The cruise will finish at Bowness and you should return to Liverpool by approximately 6.45pm.

Grasmere photo courtesy of

For a guide to local events in music, sport, theatre and art, visit the official tourist information website and also view panoramic photos of Liverpool



Sefton Park Palm House photo courtesy of Sefton Park Palm House Preservation TrustSefton Park Palm House