Liverpool Parks
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Present day view of the main path

Stone column at the park's main entrance

Historical background
In 1895 Liverpool Corporation received a new ‘People’s Park’, a 108 acre gift from an anonymous city donor. At the opening ceremony on September 7th over 10,000 local school children were entertained and the curious origins of the site some gave rise to its popular nickname ‘The Mystery’ (or ‘Mizzy’).

The philanthropic citizen decreed that the site should remain as a ‘children’s playground’ and over the following century the area became one of Liverpool’s most popular open spaces as the venue for a number of great civic events, most notably including a Grand Pageant to commemorate the 700th anniversary of the town charter (1907) and from 1949 throughout the fifties, sixties and early seventies, Wavertree Playground was home to the Liverpool Show

The Liverpool Show was a well respected horticultural, agricultural and civic occasion with attendances over the three day event in the 1960s often exceeding 100, 000 (129,409 in 1965).

The park today
Although it subsequently emerged that the donor was Philip Holt, of a wealthy ship owning family, the Playground retains popularity as the Mystery and today is a major city attraction as both venue for large events including fairs, and sport – the latter as home to Liverpool Athletics, Tennis and the recently opened Liverpool Aquatics Centre which features an Olympic standard pool.