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#182685 - 4th Nov 2007 3:57pm Bidston Hill
Mark Offline


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Bidston Hill


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Originally Posted By: www.wirral.gov.uk
Bidston Hill

Rising to 231 feet Bidston Hill is one of the highest points on the Wirral. Its 100 acres of heathland and woodland contain mysterious rock carvings and historic buildings, as well as being a haven for wildlife amidst the urban sprawl.

The stone tablet on the Windmill describes how the local authority acquired the land for public use from Lord Vyner around the turn of the century. Evidence of earlier activities however are much less obvious.

Probably the oldest feature on the Hill is a four and a half foot long carving of a 'Sun Goddess', carved into the flat rock north-east of the Observatory - it is supposed to face the direction of the rising sun on midsummer's day and was thought to have been carved by the Norse-Irish around 1000 A.D. Another ancient carving of a horse can be found on the bare rock north of the Observatory, just before the path turns down to Bidston Village. Other, more recent rock carvings can be seen on the vertical rock face just south of the Observatory. In 1407 part of the Hill was enclosed by a wall known as Penny-a-day Dyke to create a deer park for private deer hunting. The remains can be seen along the edge of the wood (Park Wood) just below the ridge from the Mill to the Observatory.

The 'Cock-Pit' is another strange feature on the Hill to be found at the very northern end near to Bidston Hall. Consisting of a narrow circular trench, approximately 10 inches deep and 20 feet in diameter cut into the bare sandstone surrounded by tall gorse bushes. Thought to be the site where cock-fighting took place, it could also be the remains of a small gorse mill where gorse was crushed for animal feed. An old, disused mill would have been an ideal location for this illegal sport.

From 1763 a Signal Station was located on the Hill eventually consisting of over 100 flagpoles sited all along the ridge of the Hill. Mostly used to send messages to the merchants of Liverpool of incoming ships, some were also used to warn of enemy warships and ships in distress. The most visible hole that remains is approximately 30 yds north of the Windmill. In 1771 the first lighthouse was built. An octagonal building, it formed part of the chain of semaphore signals along the N. Wales coast. A message could be sent from Holyhead to Liverpool in 8 minutes!

The present lighthouse was built in 1873 (adjacent to the Observatory) and last used in 1913. Although miles from the sea, its height enabled it to be seen in conjunction with the Leasowe lighthouse. Together they enabled the ships to avoid the sandbanks in the channel. 'Wreckers' from the Wallasey area used to operate by lighting beacons to confuse the ships' captains into hitting a sandbank. Once wrecked the cargo would be collected from the shore, while the seamen were left to drown.

In 1866 Bidston Observatory was built, faced with sandstone excavated from the site. The equatorial telescope in the west dome was used for the observation of comets while the transit telescope in the east dome was used to determine the time from the sun, moon and stars. At exactly 1.00 p.m. each day the 'One-0'clock Gun' on Birkenhead Dock would be fired by a series of switches from the Observatory. The gun and telescopes were given to Liverpool Museum in 1962. The Hill can be reached by bus or train (Bidston railway Station is approximately half a mile away). Alternatively a car park is situated off Boundary Road near to Tam O'Shanter Urban Farm where toilets, information and refreshments can be found, 9:30 am - 4:30 pm each day.

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#192348 - 10th Jan 2008 4:02pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Mark]
jonno40 Offline
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I am fascinated by Bidston Hill and every time i go up there i find somthing of intrest.here are some of the things we found ths morning.Any ideas as too what any of them are welcome.

More about the Bidston Signals Click me

This was about 25 mtrs north of the wind mill by


There are several of these along the park wood ridge from the mill to the observatory and beyond,
the last one we could find was next to the horse north of the observatory




So different to all the other names gouged out of the sand stone and looks much older ??
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#192358 - 10th Jan 2008 4:37pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: jonno40]
jonno40 Offline
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think the fourth pic may be to do with the signal flag poles


Edited by jonno39 (29th Feb 2008 12:03pm)
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#192665 - 11th Jan 2008 11:49am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: jonno40]
Mark Offline


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The more you go up on Bidston Hill you find more and more.
Or you become more and more curious too.

Thanks for sharing, interesting stuff.
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#212209 - 27th Feb 2008 10:10pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Mark]
Mark Offline


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See first post for the link to this image.



Pictures from the same place only the one below is from the
observatory looking down the hill.


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#212227 - 27th Feb 2008 11:54pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Mark]
BMW Joe Offline
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didnt you get one from the bottom of the hill Mark?
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#212249 - 28th Feb 2008 9:08am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: BMW Joe]
Mark Offline


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Forgot but on my next expedition i will wink
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#212370 - 28th Feb 2008 10:38pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Mark]
Mark Offline


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Bidston Hill - Now and Then Click Me

The First post has more links to and around Bidston Hill smile

Just for you Joseph


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#212427 - 29th Feb 2008 3:03am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Mark]
placidmaster Offline
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looking at tthem carvings, i think 1 is ancient noughts and crosses, 2 could be ancient golf and the third coud be the winner of both events?? you never know. seriously tho when i left there had just been a massive fire so i guess all sorts became exposed
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#212432 - 29th Feb 2008 7:43am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: placidmaster]
jonno40 Offline
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Bidston Hill has a variety of rock carvings dotted about the hill some such as the Sun Goddess being dated 1000AD.

Click Me for Wirral Gov Bidston Hill Info

This is supposed to be from a local outdoor theatre group called the mummbles.


Click to reveal..



Found on rock face south of observatory.

Click to reveal..


ANCIENT HORSE CARVING


SUN GODDESS


Click to reveal..




Edited by jonno39 (1st Mar 2008 9:25am)
Edit Reason: spelling
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#212433 - 29th Feb 2008 7:53am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: jonno40]
jonno40 Offline
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There used to be another road up the hill starting just on the left as you look at the old picture .This is no longer there but the remains are clearly visible on the south side of the observatory



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#212437 - 29th Feb 2008 8:01am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: jonno40]
jonno40 Offline
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From 1763 a Signal Station was located on the Hill eventually consisting of over 100 flagpoles sited all along the ridge of the Hill. Mostly used to send messages to the merchants of Liverpool of incoming ships, some were also used to warn of enemy warships and ships in distress. The most visible hole that remains is approximately 30 yds north of the Windmill. In 1771 the first lighthouse was built. An octagonal building, it formed part of the chain of semaphore signals along the N. Wales coast. A message could be sent from Holyhead to Liverpool in 8 minutes!

Click me Bigger Picture of Bidston Signals

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#212482 - 29th Feb 2008 11:55am Re: Bidston Hill [Re: jonno40]
Mark Offline


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Registered: 9th Nov 2003
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That Road is Very Interesting think
And the Signals Map is almost 100 years old..

Good Finds Jonno...
I haven't seen the Sun Goddess on my travels just yet
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#213703 - 4th Mar 2008 10:24pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Mark]
Doctor_Frick Offline
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Registered: 24th Nov 2007
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Yep a lot of the names carved into the rock are the names of the famous "cock fighters" that spent there time on the hill. One in particular is notorious and is called "evil", the name is stil there if you look around closley.

The carving of the sun godess is believe dto date back to phoenician travellers far longer ago that 1000 years, it is estimated that it may have been 2000 years ago. The phoenicians were a sea fearing race and had similar burial practises to early christian hence the arms extended outwards.

Regards
Doctor Frick
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#213705 - 4th Mar 2008 10:28pm Re: Bidston Hill [Re: Doctor_Frick]
Mark Offline


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Hummm Very interesting smile
Thanks for sharing.
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