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Happy Birthday Liverpool!

 Liverpool 800th Logo

This year in 2007 Liverpool will celebrate 800 years of remarkable history. From hesitant medieval beginnings as a planned town on a Greenfield site in 1207, the great seaport of Liverpool rose to become the proud 'second city of empire', at the height of fame and fortune in 1907, the time of its 700th anniversary.

Thereafter, history took a sharp turn for the worse, as did the image and perception of the city. Cosmopolitan Liverpool descended from 'world city to pariah city', to be stigmatized, after a brief 'Merseybeat' cultural florescence in the 1960s, as the 'shock city' of post-industrial Britain.

As it approaches its 800th birthday, however, it is undergoing remarkable renaissance, boosted by UNESCO inscription of the Liverpool Maritime Mercantile City World Heritage Site, ahead of its status as European Capital of Culture in 2008.

The ups and downs of this amazing roller coaster history are charted in Liverpool 800: culture, character and history, a major new history jointly commissioned by Liverpool City Council and the University of Liverpool to mark the octocentenary, to be published in autumn 2006 as the city prepares to enter its 'year of heritage'.