Old Dock experience

The Old Dock experience is a truly unique learning opportunity led by our knowledgeable museum tour guides. 

Available on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10.30am, 12noon and 2.30pm.

The tour is highly engaging and a must for any group studying Liverpool’s local history. Discover why the Old Dock, the first commercial enclosed wet dock in the world when it opened in 1715, was so important and what impact it had on local, national and international trade. 

Developed in partnership with the owners of Liverpool One, the Old Dock experience is also the only way to access this amazing archaeological site.

group on a tour of Liverpool's Old Dock

Key facts

  • Suitable for: Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4, Post 16, Post 18
  • Subjects: History
  • Session type: Museum led
  • Duration: 60 minutes
  • Class size(maximum): 15
  • Venue: Merseyside Maritime Museum
  • Free
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Workshop details

The tour begins with a welcome and introduction at the Merseyside Maritime Museum. Students are then led through a secret entrance to the site of the Old Dock in what is now Liverpool One.

Topics covered during the hour include:

  • the background and context as to why the dock was built,
  • the buildings in the surrounding area,
  • the key figures involved,
  • the materials used to build the dock,
  • the cargos that were transported,
  • and the role of the archaeologists in unearthing the site and interpreting the finds.

Utilising objects that can be handled brings the old dock to life. At the end students take part in discussions and a question and answer session.

It is worth noting for anyone with mobility issues that the Old Dock site is below ground level, with access via stairs or a lift.