St Nicholas, Peir Head, Liverpool.

St Nicholas, Liverpool.  Picture from a birth certificate of 1866

Extract from "The Pictorial History of the County of Lancaster," published by George Routledge, London, in 1854.

The structures of Liverpool, applied to the purposes of religious worship, are numerous, as we have before observed. The only church that possessed a claim to antiquity was that of St. Nicholas, the earliest parish records belonging to which do not date before 1681: it was a chapel of case under Walton-on-the-Hill, until 1699, when the town of Liverpool was made a distinct parish. There was onee a statue of St. Nicholas in the church- yard; regarded as the tutelar guardian of seamen on proceeding upon their outward-bound voyages. This church [. . .] was rebuilt in 1774, except the tower, and stands nearly opposite St. George's Dock. In 1810, as the congregation were assembling on a Sunday for divine worship, and about ten minutes before it usually commenced, the spire fell through the roof along the centre aisle of the church, owing to the ringing of the bells loosening the stones of the arches on which it rested. The children of the Moorfields charity were entering at the moment-the girls preceding the boys; but the latter all escaped, while of the others, twenty-eight were buried under the fallen mass, twenty-three killed, and five taken to the hospital, of which number one died subsequently. The present tower was soon afterwards erected, so that no trace of the ancient church now remains.