History of the Museum of Liverpool

people walking past museum building

The former Museum of Liverpool Life, which closed in 2006

The Museum of Liverpool builds on the success of the former Museum of Liverpool Life. This original award-winning museum was housed in the old Pilotage and Salvage Association buildings on Liverpool's waterfront, in between the Albert Dock and Pier Head. Its popular displays looked at the life, work and leisure activities of Liverpool people from all walks of life over the last 200 years.

The Museum of Liverpool Life opened in 1993 and featured three main galleries; Making a Living, Demanding a Voice and Mersey Culture. In July 2000 the display space more than doubled when three new galleries were added as part of the Into the Future project; City Lives, City Soldiers and the River Room.

With these additions and a packed programme of temporary exhibitions the museum soon became one of National Museums Liverpool's most popular venues. In fact it was so busy that the Pilotage building, with its limited floor space, could no longer accommodate the more than 300,000 visits a year it was receiving. To solve this problem the old museum has been replaced with the larger purpose-built Museum of Liverpool.

After 13 fantastic years the Museum of Liverpool Life closed its doors to the public for the last time on Sunday 4 June 2006, to allow preparations for building work for the new museum to begin. 

Past exhibitions

The archive of past exhibitions | includes the exhibitions held at the Museum of Liverpool Life up until 2006.