Art, Prison, and Engines: Exploring Liverpool!

With my first year of university wrapped up, a friend and I decided it was finally time to explore. We’ve been so busy ever since we got here that we’ve simply not been able to. So, this last weekend, we set aside three straight days. Here’s what we got up to!

Friday: Walker Art Gallery

If you’ve ever been to Liverpool, you’ll likely have seen the incredible buildings across the road from Lime Street station. St George’s Hall, the World Museum, the Central Library, and Walker Art Gallery. I’ve walked past them dozens of times, and only really been in the library.

Stumbled upon a #monet painting #artgallery #landscape #beautiful #tourist

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So our first stop was the art gallery. It had around a dozen galleries, from medieval European art to contemporary pieces. There was an early copy of the Mona Lisa, as well as a Monet painting (above). I quite liked how low-key it was; compared to the museums and galleries I’ve been to in London, there was actually space to look and pause without being somehow forced out of the way.

We spent a good couple of hours at this gallery, just taking it in. I will admit, we were a bit immature for a little while when we discovered that Snapchat filters would respond to the paintings… I won’t put those photos in…

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Saturday: Cathedral and Many, Many Miles

Saturday brought our trip to Chester! If you recall, I first visited Chester back in February and wrote a post about it, but that time was very purpose-orientated for a module I was studying. This time, we hopped on a bus, and had no agenda. We walked around the entire city wall, struggled to find the cathedral entrance, found out Google was sadly misinformed and that the castle is closed to the public, and ate food in a Grade 2 listed building.

A little side note, but I am impressed by the bus fares up here. It was £2 for a return journey that took over three hours in total, probably closer to four. At home it’s about £2 to go all of ten minutes.

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The weather the whole weekend was gorgeous. It rained a tiny bit but other than that, it was great. My friend happens to have an extremely friendly face and gets stopped all the time by people asking for directions etc., so when we were on our way out of the cathedral she got stopped for a survey. Of course. The woman asking the questions seemed quite amused at the fact we weren’t on a trip, but had simply sat on the bus from one end of the line to the other!

During the course of the day, we managed to walk almost the entire circumference of the city wall. When we reached the Phoenix Tower/King Charles Tower, the small room inside was open, so we sat there for a solid 40 minutes discussing which periods of history we’ve covered so far – yes, we’re complete nerds… The member of staff there found us amusing, though, so there’s that.

Sunday: Prison and A Lot of Rope

Directly opposite Lime Street Station is a huge building with a war memorial in front of it. That building is St George’s Hall, previously an ambiguous building I’d walk past every time I went into town.

Turns out, it was an old prison, courthouse, and hall for various events! The cells have certain sections of the walls preserved, where inmates wrote their names and sentences. The corridors have a lot of information about past practises carried out by prison guards, and the various forms of punishment. It was actually really fascinating. Oh, and the hall here is where part of Fantastic Beasts was filmed, just FYI.

Afterwards, we wandered down to Albert Dock. I’ve been here fairly regularly, but not done a whole lot. When we arrived, we were pleasantly surprised to find we could go on a couple of the ships docked there! The first one was a proper pirate-y ship, ropes and all.

Out and about and ended up on a ship! I love Liverpool 😂 #tourist #explore #albertdock #smoothsailing #nofilter

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The second was a ship that’s been through a lot. The guys on board told us a lot of its history. It was built in 1903 (before the first flight – woah), has very similar engines to the Titanic, spent years falling into disrepair, and took over £3 million to restore.

They took us to various parts of the ship, including the engine room, which was really amazing. It’s really an incredible sight, to see where the magic actually happens. I’d highly recommend seeing a ship’s engine room if you can, it should be a bucket list thing. I can’t imagine much of what’s produced today lasting the next hundred or so years, but back then, things were built to last.

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We finished the day (and our weekend of exploring) with the Museum of Liverpool across the other side of the dock. It incorporated a huge amount of the city’s history, from the First World War, to the Beatles, to now. The pair of us are history students, we can’t help but be attracted to all the historic places and activities of the city.


So there you have it! That’s pretty much what we got up to over the last weekend. I know Liverpool has a raging reputation for the clubbing and nightlife available here, but if you do come visit, I’d really encourage you to explore the way we did. Even though Chester technically isn’t Liverpool, but y’know. The history of this city is amazing, and the sights are great.

Before you go, please feel free to go follow me on my Instagram and Twitter accounts – it’s where I’m most active!

Katy x

Interviewing Myself

1: What motivates you more: failure or success?

Success. I used to be afraid of failure; now I think failure is only a stepping stone towards success. I’m determined in everything that I do.

2: You can ask anyone in the world a question. Who and what would it be?

JK Rowling. I’d ask what keeps her motivated.

3: If you could say something to your 85-year-old self, what would it be?

Keep a youthful mindset. Don’t let your mind go stale.

4: If you could say something to your 15-year-old self, what would it be?

Despite how frustrated you feel at this moment, and despite a couple of hard years to come, you will see the other side and be so much happier.

5: Imagine money is no longer a thing. How would you spend your time?

I would spend my time being creative. I’d write. I’d travel. I’d laugh as much as I could. Hang out with the people I want to hang out with. And I’d work as hard as I could to make something better in the world.

6: If you stripped away all the layers of other people’s expectations and desires for you, what would you want for yourself?

I would want myself to be completely open and honest with people. I try to be as things stand, but sometimes it’s not possible.

7: What’s one thing you’ve been putting off doing?

One thing I’ve been putting off doing is finishing my book. Not because I don’t want to, and not because I don’t know how to, but because my priorities in the last two years have prevented me from doing so.

8: What headline would you like to read in tomorrow’s newspaper?

In tomorrow’s newspaper I’d love to see that every country in the world has switched to renewable energy and are making concerted efforts to save the animals and environments we’ve so crudely endangered.

9: What do you want written on your gravestone?

“She loved deeply.”

10: What is a perfect day to you, truly?

A perfect day for me would be sunny, and the perfect temperature so I was warm, but not hot. I’d spend the morning exercising, meeting close friends and eating food by the beach, and the afternoon alone in a café or somewhere I can be entirely isolated to write. In the evening, I’d go home to a partner I trust completely, and we’d watch a film under a blanket.

11: What do you find annoying in this great charade we call ‘modern life’?

What I find annoying about ‘modern life’ is the amount of people who can want to talk to you at any one time. It’s so hard sometimes to simply focus on what’s in front of you, rather than flitting between six social media platforms and the present. Sometimes I just leave my Wifi off on my phone for hours.

12: What are you most looking forward to in life?

I’m most looking forward to reaching milestones, achieving goals, and setting new ones.

13: If you could change just one thing in your past, what would it be?

I would change the fact that I had/still have acne. It’s been nine years since I started getting scarring spots and to be honest, it’s just inconvenient at this point. It’s not even like I’m hugely self-conscious about it, I just find them annoying.

14: Would you want to be your own friend?

I think so. Alternatively I’d find myself really weird, but I think I would.

15: Describe the last five years of your life in one sentence – and the next five.

The last five years: A lot of experiences which changed me and my outlook on life, and helped me mature. The next five: Achieving things I’ve been planning for a long time.

16: When did you last do something for the first time?

Today! Well, as I’m writing this. I just posted my postal vote for the UK General Election. It’s the first time I’ve been eligible to vote in one.

17: How many hours a week do you watch TV? And browse the internet?

I don’t watch TV, but browsing the internet (excluding uni work time) probably around 14 hours a week. I try to make it productive as possible but let’s be real, I could probably put some of that time to better use.

18: If you had 10K to start a business, what would you do with it?

If I had 10K… I’d start an agency to help creative people access their goals. Kind of like a job agency with connections and stuff, but for creative people.


And there you have it! I hope you enjoyed this post, I found this idea  and these questions through Bianca Bass on Pinterest, so check her out. I’ll be back on Thursday!

Katy x

How I Revise: University Edition

It’s exam season! This is now my sixth official exam season of my life, from GCSEs upwards, so over the years I’ve had plenty of experience with revising. That dreaded word.

University exams are, or at least they have been in my experience, very different to GCSE and A Level exams. For one, they make way more sense (I can only speak for English and History exams here as that’s the course I study), but there’s a stark difference in that you tend to only revise for a couple of weeks rather than a good couple of months.

This can make university exams better and worse. A lot of people I know get really stressed out by the short revision period compared to what they’re used to, but personally I like to treat it the same as old Key Assessments back in the day. Essentially, that’s what they are – a test at the end of a module to see what you’ve learned. I make this distinction because that’s very far removed from GCSE and A Level exams, which for all intents and purposes these days are designed to align with government statistics and desires.

Personally, when I was at school, our teachers used to turn to us and inform us that we’d be having a test in four days’ time, or maybe in one week’s time. So alongside all the regular work for other subjects, we’d have to revise whatever module this test was on. And this was a regular occurrence for me, so to be at university with up to three weeks to revise properly for exams is actually fairly reasonable. You have no lectures, and you can devote as much time to revision as you like.

Plus, there’s the added bonus that, boring as revision may be, it’s a brief stint – you can go back to doing interesting things in a relatively short amount of time. That’s actually something I love about it.

Here’s a few ways I revise for university exams:

1: Rewatch lectures.

Obviously this only works for lectures that have been recorded in the first place, but when it is an option, it’s so beneficial. I like to put them on and fill in the original notes I took with the detail I missed the first time around. It both refreshes your memory and allows you to finetune your work.

2: Create index cards.

This goes for all exams, really – you just can’t go wrong with index/flash cards. I try to squash them down to what’s definitely important to know, so it’s not like writing out the entire course notes again. That would just be a bit pointless.

3: Annotate. Annotate. Annotate.

I study English Literature modules, so there’s usually a lot of material to know inside out. Right now I’m revising for a Shakespeare exam, and annotating the collection is one of the best things alongside rereading the plays. I like to use little coloured post-it stickers to mark important sections, quotes, and whatever else. Injecting a little colour into anything brightens the day!

4: Find that friend who you can work with.

Revising with friends can be risky or rewarding. You can either end up distracting each other completely, have one person be a constant distraction, or work well together. By exam time you should be aware of who you work best around, so set up camp somewhere with them and get going on revision. I like being around people I know I can work with, because being completely isolated when revising is thoroughly demoralising, while being around people who don’t take the work as seriously as you do is stressful.

5: When in doubt, give a lecturer a shout.

Most of the time, lecturers are readily available, whether by email or by office hours. With some of my exams, we can have fairly free license on what we revise – for one of my English exams, we can essentially choose whichever English texts we like, whether on the module or not, so it’s always a good call to just check in and see if something’s alright.

6: Look at any exam resources you’ve been given.

The final week of each semester’s teaching for me has been where the lecturers and tutors provide exam advice. Even if they don’t tell you particularly what will be in the exam, I’ve been so happy to find that they’re genuinely not trying to catch you out. A lot of what will be on the exam paper will have been in past exams for that module, and they’ll be readily available for your perusal.


If there’s anything to be taken away from my experience of university exams so far, it’s this: the university staff actually care about the education of their students, and most of the time they really hope the students can bring something new or interesting to the table. It’s much more about the material, and not at all about however many students are “allowed” an A* by the government this year. So don’t stress too much.

Katy x