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Dear Scottie, We (Urban Canvas) are having an initial meeting with Liverpool City Council as there is currently a good possibility of gaining funding for this years (2009) Pavement Art Competition event. We obviously want to 'grow' the event so we will be looking for additional funding for this and possibly new partners. We'd like to keep our old partners- Scottie Press, Maggie-Mays-Café (Carling Gallery), Bold Street Traders, Editions, etc. But we'd like to bring on board FACT, The National Museums and Galleries on Merseyside, The New Peoples Museum at the Pier Head, Hope University and so on. The more people we have on board the more potential for a great event. This link: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=cIFI13zX10I and this link: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=5hT5DbJtxGw sums up the kind of event we aspire to in Liverpool. It will take time of course but if things go to plan we can see no reason why hundreds of artists can't be seen over the entire length of Bold Street with Church of St Luke's in the background. It's a great setting and if I was a tourist, Bold Street (postcard pictured 1905) is the first place we would like to visit - the old and historic parts of Liverpool. It's just crying out for this kind of event and there is no other city event like it in the entire United Kingdom. We have a new mini James Carling Competition Documentary, which we will be sending out shortly. We would like to encourage everybody to join the Liverpool Chalk Circle: http://www.flickr.com/groups/chalkcircle an on-line discussion forum and photo sharing site specifically set-up for people interested in the James Carling Competition and Italian Street Painting in Liverpool. Any news will be published here first! Thanks for your support and we look forward to turning Bold Street (once more) into a 'carpet of dreams' in 2009! Philip & Catherine (Urban Canvas)

NB: To view examples of artwork by James William Carling and Henry Carling at the Carling Gallery (Maggie May Café, Bold Street) please phone 0151 709 7600 or email andylea@hotmail.com


For over 6 years the Scottie Press Community Newspaper and Website have voiced up the efforts of local author, Mike Kelly, to gain greater awareness of, and recognition for, Holy Cross (Addison Street) born (1857) artist James William Carling. On Saturday 18th October Mike Kelly's efforts were boosted by a major Pavement Art Competition staged at Ropewalks Square, Bold Street. The competition was organised by Philip Battle and Catherine McMahon of Urban Canvas (pictured with Louise Ellman MP).

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The competition was supported by Liverpool Culture Company, Bold Street Traders, Editions Ltd and Scottie Press as part of The Liverpool Irish Festival 2008 and The Big Draw. Over 20 artists took part and the winner of the James Carling Pavement Art Competition was Terence Kane (pavement art depicting Irish Emigrants Entering Liverpool). Terry is photographed with Olwen McLaughlin (owner of Editions Ltd, Contemporary Art Gallery) who donated the (engraved, crystal glass) Trophy to the competition.

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The judges for the competition included Phil Redmond and Mike McCartney. Very much at the centre of events during the day was the Maggie May Café (Bold Street) wherein the Carling Gallery is located. Very grateful thanks go to John Lea and Staff at Maggie May Café for their wonderful help on the day and their support for the James William Carling Project over the past year. John Lea and Mike Kelly are pictured with the Lord Mayor who as part of the visit to the competition called into the Carling Gallery and signed the visitors' book. The Pavement Art Competition, themed on 'Out Of The Galleries' saw street artists reinterpreting works from National Galleries and Museums Liverpool.

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News and coverage of the competition was featured in the Liverpool Daily Post and Echo Newspapers and a number of worldwide (Pavement Art) websites including http://www.merseyworld.com/interfest/jamescarling.htm and http://open.culture.org.uk/News.aspx?newsId=49

Plans are set to have the competition repeated in 2009 (as a legacy of Liverpool's Capital of Culture Year) and to become an annual event in Liverpool.


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Since the Scottie Press started to feature information about James William Carling on this webapge in 2002 the community newspaper has been contacted by readers who have found (for purchase) original works of art by either James William Carling or his older brother Henry. We thank a website reader living in America who contacted us to say; "I recently picked up a beautiful circa 1890s oil painting here in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, but when I got it home and cleaned the frame I realized it was actually a portrait in chalk on canvas. While researching the artist's name Carling, I ran across the James Carling webpage on your website and discovered his brother Henry Carling did portraits in Minnesota during that time. The seller lost the paper on the back but he knows the child's name is Mildred and that she died at the age of 8 or 9 from (scarlet fever?) in the 1890s. I'm not sure if this is either James or Henry's work but I thought you might be interested in seeing it"


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Efforts are now underway to see if a Street Pavement Artist Competition can be organised in 2008 as part of events celebrating Liverpool's status as European Capital of Culture. This pavement artist competition would also enhance the work of the Vauxhall History & Heritage Group, Scottie Press and Mike Kelly to seek a greater awareness of and recognition for James William Carling. An area in the Bold Street area (Ropewalks Square) has been identified as a possible place where the competition could be staged.


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When James William Carling was aged about 8 he was a talented 'Street Pavement Artist' and his work would have been seen on the pavement of Liverpool town centre. His work was however not viewable in Bold Street as this street was considered to be too posh and indeed was described as "the promenade of the aristocracy'. The James William Carling Project is very grateful to Maggie May Café owner John Lea who has offered to display framed pictures of Carling's paintings in his 'Gallery Area' in September. We picture the Maggie May Café in Bold Street and also John Lea viewing a selection of the unframed pictures. John has intentions of naming his 'Gallery Area' the "Carling Gallery" and having a painting of James William Carling featured on the current blank wall of the Café. You can contact John at the Maggie May Café by telephoning 0151 709 7600. email andylea41@hotmail.com


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For almost six years local author Mike Kelly has made continued efforts to have Addison Street (Holy Cross) born James William Carling recognised. On Friday 13th July 2007 Louise Ellman MP unveiled a Plaque within Holy Cross School recognising the association the Liverpool born artist had with the school. The Plaque, which was designed and made by artist & sculptor Terry McGunigle also marks that 2007 sees the 150th Anniversary of his birth in 1857. In 1871, James William Carling (then aged 14) travelled to America to join his elder brother Henry and to hopefully become as successful an artist as Henry. Within the Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia, USA there is 'The Raven Room'. Here are displayed some 43 illustrations of Edgar Allen Poe's most famous poem, "The Raven," which were created by the artist James Carling in the 1880's. James William Carling returned to Liverpool in 1887 with intentions to further his artwork and career. Sadly he died the same year and is buried in a Pauper's Grave at Walton Park Cemetery and, to recognise this aspect of his life, a plaque made by and donated by Bernie Raynard (Inscript Engraving - Victoria Street, Liverpool 2) was presented to Colin Barry (Manager at Rice Lane Farm - Walton Park Cemetery - wherein Carling is buried). This will be located within the old Chapel, which is now used as a visitor centre and for lectures and other community functions and events. Prior to handing over the Plaque to Colin we placed it alongside the monument to Robert Noonan who is also buried at Walton Park Cemetery. Robert Noonan (1870-1911) wrote under the pen name of 'Robert Tressell'. His world famous novel 'The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist' was written in 1908 but sadly he never saw it in print as it was published in 1914. Since that date it has sold in the millions and is an international best seller. There is an established Rice Lane Farm 'History Trail' with a leaflet guide. To find out more about the History Trail phone 0151 530 1066 or email ricelanecityfarm@btconnect.com


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Plans are in motion to site and unveil a Plaque within Holy Cross School (Fontenoy Street) in July 2007 to recognise the association that this school has with James William Carling and to mark that 2007 sees the 150th Anniversary of his birth. He was born in 1857 at 38 Addison Street, Liverpool 3 and attended Holy Cross School which opened in 1859. The Plaque is being designed and made by artist and sculptor Terry McGunigle.

We always welcome hearing from readers who may have information on and about James William Carling or indeed his older brother Henry. Our thanks goes to Chad Gieseke for contacting the Scottie Press about a painting he recently purchased.

Dear Scottie Press I recently purchased a pastel portrait of a man (see pictured right) with the signature "Carling" in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I'm trying to find out more information about this artist and some of the portraits by James Carling on your website look similar. I'm attaching photo of the portrait and it's signature. If you might have any information regarding this pastel it would be greatly appreciated. Chad Gieseke


For more than 4 years, local author Michael Kelly has made efforts to highlight and promote the life of James William Carling. This web page records these efforts. Whilst Mike continues to campaign for better appreciation and recognition of this Liverpool born artist (Fontenoy Street, Liverpool 3, in 1857) he has decided to concentrate more of his efforts within his talks given on Liverpool's Irish Connection. For details email mikekelly@talktalk.net. With this in mind we feature below a selection of pictures of paintings by James William Carling which Mike had hoped would have been exhibited at the Walker Art Gallery along with additional examples of the artist's work and his illustrations for Edgar Allen Poe's famous poem 'The Raven'.

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The pictures featured were kindly emailed to Scottie Press by Paddy Rose (Great Nephew of James William Carling) who lives in America.


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Dear Scottie Press, Very nice display on the James William Carling Projects page. I have found three additional miniatures by Henry Carling and email them to you herewith. Delia (Ryan) Carling, Henry's wife, was painted in 1911 (this is the only one with a date on). Stella (Estelle Carling) was Henry and Delia's daughter, and my mother's favourite aunt. Patricia is my mother, this portrait of her at two years of age, (circa 1921). Hope all is going well. Paddy Rose


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Our thanks go to Paddy Rose and to Paul Neumann who have contacted the Scottie Press to provided added pictorial information to the James William Carling Project's web page. Paul Neumann who lives in American has emailed a picture of a landscape painting by Henry Carling (elder brother of James William Carling). Both James and Henry were born in Addison Street, Liverpool 3 and it was with his elder brother that James set sail in 1871 to start a new life in America. Paddy Rose (Great nephew of James William Carling and Henry Carling) has emailed a self-portrait of Henry Carling. Mike Kelly has given a number of talks about James William Carling to a variety of local history groups and other associations etc. He has plans to continue these talks in 2007. A feature of these talks is the presentation of pictures of paintings by both James William Carling and Henry Carling. For more information contact mikekelly@talktalk.net


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Thanks is given to Lesley Black, General Manager of the League of Welldoers, (see photographed above) for supporting the James William Carling Project by displaying a selection of framed pictures of Carling's paintings at Lee Jones House, Limekiln Lane, Liverpool 5, from Monday 10th - Friday 14th July.

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Also pictured alongside the paintings displayed are local author Mike Kelly and Mary Seddon (Member of League of Welldoers).


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Thanks to support from Steve Tierney, lunchtime and evening diners at the Via Veneto Ristorante (Old Hall Street, Liverpool 3) will have an opportunity to view framed pictures of James William Carling’s paintings until Friday 7th July.

Louise Ellman and Steve Tierney

Photographed above is Louise Ellman MP with Ristorante owner Steve Tierney when Louise called into the Via Veneto (Friday 16th June) to add her support to the ongoing efforts to gain a greater recognition for this Liverpool born artist. James William Carling was born in Addison Street, Liverpool 3 in 1857. Addison Street is within the Holy Cross Parish, which is recorded in history as being Liverpool’s Little Ireland by virtue of having the highest density of Irish people in the years subsequent to the Irish Famine of 1847. It is also recorded that residents of this parish went on to have a very close association with residents of what became known as Liverpool’s Little Italy area. This area included Gerard Street, Lionel Street, Whale Street and Hunter Street and where within the St Joseph’s Parish.

The exhibition of James William Carling’s artwork at the Italian Ristorante in Old Hall Street is in recognition of the bond between the Little Italy and Little Ireland communities, which has lasted for over 150 years.


Liverpool tourist chiefs are hoping to attract tourists by promoting the city’s graveyards. Cemeteries around the world attract thousands of visitors. It’s felt that Liverpool’s cemeteries are an untapped resource that would offer tourists a different aspect of the city’s history. There are so many fascinating figures from history buried the city’s cemeteries. The James William Carling Project has highlighted (for over 4 years) how the Addison Street (Holy Cross) born artist is buried in a pauper’s grave in Walton Park Cemetery. A greater awareness of Carling’s burial site will be part of a tourist trail created at the cemetery this summer.

J. W. Carling Exhibition. Holy Cross Pupils

On Monday 8th May 2006 local author Mike Kelly visited Holy Cross RC Primary School to view an exhibition of James William Carling’s paintings. This exhibition is part of this year’s James William Carling ‘Art & Poetry Competition’. The exhibition also featured in a talk that Mike gave to the English Speaking Union at the Athenaeum Club on May 19th.

"In Bold Street the pavement artist did not draw"

In the December 2005 issue of the Scottie Press we gave notification that News From Nowhere had very kindly offered their support to the James William Carling Project by agreeing to display some examples of the artist's watercolour artwork in the front window of their Bold Street bookshop. All involved with the project would like to thank Maria Ng and Staff at News From Nowhere for putting the mini exhibition on display at the beginning of January 2006. (see photographed below)

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In the late years of the 1860s when James William Carling was aged 8 - 12 years old he was a talented street pavement artist. It was possible for him to display his skill on many of the busy city centre street pavements, but not in Bold Street. He wrote some years later; that "even the sight of the ragged coat was enough to bring the harsh move on - for in Bold Street, the promenade of the aristocracy, the pavement artist did not draw". It is therefore justly fitting that by having examples of his work exhibited in the front window of the News From Nowhere bookshop (96 Bold Street) very many people will be able to appreciate just how talented an artist James William Carling was. So talented that the Edgar Allen Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia, USA, has a permanent display of 43 of Carling's illustrations for Poe's poem 'The Raven' in the 'Raven Room' of the museum. The acknowledgement given by the Poe Museum to James William Carling must surely demand that the city of Liverpool also recognises him.

Efforts to secure such recognition, undertaken by local author, Mike Kelly, have been ongoing for over 4 years. James William Carling was born in Addison Street, Liverpool 3 in 1857 and in 1871 (when aged 14) he went to America with his older brother, Henry. James returned to Liverpool in 1887 with a desire to study at the Liverpool Academy of Art but sadly died in a workhouse hospital in Walton later in the same year. Mike Kelly's efforts will hopefully see success in 2006 with a plaque sited in Addison Street, better awareness made of artist's pauper's burial site in Walton Park Cemetery, a city wide hoarding display of Carling's artwork and life story which will also include examples of art work by pupils of Holy Cross School, and an annual city-centre street pavement artist competition. It is also the aim of the James William Carling Project to have an exhibition in the Liverpool Walker Art Gallery of his original watercolour artwork along with examples of his illustrations currently in the Poe Museum in America. Support for this has been given by members of the Carling family in America and from the Manager of the Poe Museum.

If you would like to add your support to the aims of the project please contact Mike Kelly on 01704 576 747


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Our thanks go to Colin and staff at Rice Lane Farm for welcoming the Scottie Press when we paid a visit on Tuesday 22nd November (2005). A chilly November morning gave the Farm and its surrounding Walton Park Cemetery area a misty autumnal atmosphere, which enhanced the true beauty of this inner city location.

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Our purpose for visiting Rice Lane Farm was to talk to Colin about plans to design a history trail of the farm and cemetery area which will enable visitors to see quite a number of graves to famous and eminent people - amongst them being Dr Duncan, Robert Noonan and James William Carling.

Over the past weeks this website has featured the most current news regarding the James William Carling Project a prime aim of which is to have better recognition given to Carling's burial site.

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It is recorded that James William Carling returned to Liverpool in the spring of 1887 with the intention of studying at the National School of Art. It is doubtful, however, that he even entered the school, for by the summer James became ill. According to the Brownlow Hill Workhouse Admission Records he was admitted on 17th June 1887 and died on the 9th July 1887. Like so many artists he died young, aged 29, and at this time he was poor and unknown. As such he was buried in a pauper's grave near a demure little chapel at Walton Park in what was then called Liverpool Parish Cemetery and subsequently called Walton Park Cemetery.

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Readers can obtain more information about the history trail plans by contacting Colin at Rice Lane Farm office (photo above) or email ricelanecityfarm@Btconnect.com

To read more about the James William Carling project (CLICK HERE )


J W Carling Exhibition

At the opening of the James William Carling Exhibition on Tuesday 1st November Mike Kelly expressed his gratitude to the Lord Mayor of Liverpool (Councillor Alan Dean) and to all who have given their support to Mike's efforts to get better recognition for this Liverpool born (1857) artist. Mike was very proud to welcome everyone at the opening ceremony and to stand before a collection of reproductions of the artist's work - much of which would have been painted before he was 14.

The Lord Mayor of Liverpool said that he was delighted to be at the opening and to see the talent of a very young man and see how his talent had matured in his work for Edgar Allen Poe's poem 'The Raven'. It was a pity that James William Carling died (1887) before he got a chance to show what he was truly capable of and as such the art world no doubt lost a significant member.

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The Lord Mayor of Liverpool is photographed with Olwen McLaughlin (owner of the Editions Gallery - wherein the exhibition is staged). Also pictured is Mike Kelly.

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The Lord Mayor and Olwen and Mike are also photographed with Angela Holleran (Headteacher - Holy Cross School), Margaret Donnelly (Local Author) and with Lorraine and Anthony Brown (Emso Creative Arts), Margaret, Angela and Lorraine and Anthony have given great support to the project.

The exhibition at Editions will run until the 7th November.


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A mini exhibition of reproductions of paintings by James William Carling will take place at Editions Ltd, 16 Cook Street, Liverpool 2, on the 1st - 2nd - 3rd - 4th and 7th of November. Readers of the Scottie Press will have seen and read a number of articles about James William Carling, which have been featured in the community newspaper in support of Mike Kelly's efforts to gain a greater awareness and appreciation of this Liverpool artist who was born in Addison Street in 1857 and who died in 1887, buried in a pauper's grave in Walton Park Cemetery. Mike Kelly has asked for his thanks to be given to Olwen McLaughlin at Editions Ltd for her wonderful support and to Paddy Rose (Great Grand Nephew) of James William Carling, who lives in Winconsin USA for providing the reproductions for the exhibition. Mike also thanks Chris Semtner (Manager, Edgar Allen Poe Museum - Richmond, Virginia, USA) for his support and encouragement and for enabling examples of Carling's illustrations for Edgar Allen Poe's poem 'The Raven' to feature in the exhibition and accompanying literature.

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43 of Carling's illustrations are on display in the 'Raven Room' at the Edgar Allen Poe Musem in Richmond, Virginia USA - www.poemuseum.org

If you would like more details about the Carling exhibition at Editions Ltd please contact Mike Kelly on 01704 576 747. If you would like to contact Editions Ltd phone 0151 236 4236 or email info@editionsltd.net or visit www.editionsltd.net


For over four years The Scottie Press Community Newspaper and website has featured the efforts of Liverpool author, Michael Kelly, to raise an awareness of the life of James William Carling who is buried in a pauper's grave in Walton Park Cemetery, Liverpool 9. Current and former residents of Addison Street, Liverpool 3, might be proud to know that James William Carling was born in Addison Street in 1857. He was taken to America by his older brother in 1871 (aged 14). James Willliam Carling became a talented artist and his illustrations for Edgar Allen Poe's poem 'The Raven' are exhibited in the Poe Museum in Virginia, USA. www.poemuseum.org

He returned to Liverpool in 1887 with the intention of studying at the National School of Art. It is sad therefore that he died penniless, aged 29, in 1887 and was buried in a pauper's grave.

The Scottie Press is working with Mike Kelly and other interested people on a project that will hopefully acknowledge the life of James William Carling and may be able to secure better recognition of his birth, life and death.

We will be updating this website with more news of this project and we advise readers that they can find out more information on James William Carling by visiting our Projects section and accessing the James William Carling webpage.

Addison St 1924

We are very grateful to Liverpool Records Office and Liverpool Libraries for their permission to use the above photograph (Ref No 352 ENG/2/4338) of Addison Street (taken in 1924). The photo of Addison Street shows a shop on the corner where Addison Street met with Fontenoy Street. The shop seemingly sold a wide variety of goods. We welcome hearing from readers who may have some memories of this shop and or other photos and memories of Addison Street.

We are also grateful to Paddy Rose (Great Grand-nephew of James William Carling) who lives in Winconsin, USA for sending the Scottie Press a picture of a James William Carling painting showing a view of Addison Street-Fontenoy Street (circa 1870).

Addison and Fontenoy Streets

A major feature of the James William Carling Project will be an Art & Poetry Competition in June for year 6 pupils of Holy Cross School in Fontenoy Street, Liverpool 3, at which school James William Carling attended.

Margaret Donnelly and pupils Margaret Donnelly and pupils

Pictured with the year 6 pupils is Margaret Donnelly who has written many an interesting and enjoyable story for the Scottie Press about her memories of the Holy Cross area and indeed Holy Cross Church and School. Margaret called into the school on Thursday 16th June to talk to the year 6 pupils who have been busy working on the Poetry side of a competition.

On Wednesday 22nd June artist Anthony Brown visited Holy Cross School to give the year 6 pupils some hints and tips and to advise them how to make best use of the watercolour paper and pencils we feature a photo of Anthony's visit to the school.

Tony Brown and children

The prizes for the 'Art and Poetry Competition' will be presented by Louise Ellman MP on Friday 8th July.


As part of the James William Carling Project, Louise Ellman MP presented prizes to the winners of the Art & Poetry competitions staged at Holy Cross School. Fontenoy Street, Liverpool 3. We picture above some photographs taken of the event and we will have a full report of the prize presentation shortly.

"perhaps a proper memorial erected to this great artist"

Current and former residents of Addison Street, Liverpool 3, might be quite proud to know that that born in Addison Street in 1857 was James William Carling whose illustrations for Edgar Allen Poe's poem 'The Raven' are exhibited in a museum in Richmond, North Carolina, USA.
Click Here for more information about the works of Edgar Allen Poe.

Current and former residents of Addison Street might be a little or a lot more saddened and amazed to know that James William Carling died penniless and is buried in a pauper's grave in Walton Park Cemetery.

The story of James's William Carling's life is to feature in a book about the Liverpool Irish who made their mark in the world. It is being written by Mike Kelly whose biography of Kitty Wilkinson, the pioneer of Victorian wash-houses, was published in 2000.

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Mike Kelly is photographed standing alongside the area in which James William Carling is buried.

Mike told the Scottie Press that he hopes a better form of recognition can be given to James William Carling - "perhaps a proper memorial erected to this great artist".

The Vauxhall History & Heritage Group are keen to offer their help to Mike and if you would like to help please contact

Terry Cooke, Chairman, Vauxhall History HeritageGroup,
c/o Scottie Press Community Newspaper,
Vauxhall Multiservices Centre,
Silvester Street,
Liverpool L5 8SE.

To read more about James William Carling Click Here

It is worth mentioning that also buried in Walton Park Cemetery is Robert Noonan who as author 'Robert Tressell' wrote "The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists". We picture below a section of his headstone.
For more information about Robert Tressell Click Here

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