Liverpool's Western Approaches Museum

Old Dec 6th, 2014, 08:13 AM
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Liverpool's Western Approaches Museum

I wonder if anyone has any thoughts on this museum?
It sounds intriguing ~ akin to London's Bletchley Park?

Thank you.
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Old Dec 6th, 2014, 08:15 AM
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Old Dec 6th, 2014, 09:41 AM
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It isn't really like Bletchley.

It's true that among the major Allied achievements of WW2, keeping the Atlantic route open and cracking the German military codes rank high - and arguably were the two the British influenced most (though some might add radar and the discovery and early commercialisation of antibiotics).

But whereas the last three were ground-breaking, the Battle of the Atlantic was just another - though longer lasting than most, and probably the most crucial in Britain's history - military encounter. Though much of it was directed from Liverpool, and some operations co-ordinated from the bunker at Derby House which is now the core of the museum, it is just another reconstructed coordination centre - like the bunker museum in Whitehall, the D-Day operations centres or the Battle of Britain control rooms at RAF Uxbridge and Bentley Priory.

Unlike Bletchley, there's no unique artefact on display - and no revelation of long-suppressed secrets.

If you're interested in the battle, well worth visiting (though it's got VERY restricted visiting times). I'd have thought you'd have to be a tad obsessive about the battle to go to Liverpool just for it: but there's tons of other things in Liverpool well worth going there to see at the same time. There's also bit about the social consequences of the battle in the Museum of Liverpool, but Liverpool actually has the heaviest density of free museums in Britain (
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Old Dec 6th, 2014, 11:53 AM
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We visited this museum in late June of this year. We were the only ones there other than the ticket-taker.

Loved it!! As flanneruk writes, it's not the most important of museums. But the bunker setting is very evocative. Cold and a bit dank, you are transported back in time. It is reconstructed, but the details and the realia scattered around are fascinating.

I would highly recommend visiting the Western Approaches. You're in and out in an hour, so you'll have plenty of time for the other delights of Liverpool.
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Old Dec 6th, 2014, 06:12 PM
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Flanner and lady, I appreciate your responses. TripAdvisor also had some information ~ (certainly the museum is little-mentioned here on Fodors)

I'm confident we'll find an hour or two to visit. Thanks again!
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Old Dec 7th, 2014, 03:50 AM
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The obvious alternative or extra visit is to the Imperial war Museum North in Manchester.
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