The Williamson Art Gallery was opened on the 1st December 1928. John Williamson,
a Director of the Cunard Steamship Co.Ltd. and his son Patrick Williamson gave the
financial support to provide Birkenhead with a purpose built Museum & Art Gallery.
The Williamson, designed by the Liverpool architects, Messrs. Hannaford & Thearle,
is neo Georgian in style & a single storey building. The Williamson maintains an active exhibition programme of mainly contemporary art.This runs alongside displays from the museums excellent picture collections, together with decorative arts, maritime displays, local history and a motor museum within the building.
Pupils & students from local schools & the Art Department of Wirral Metropolitan
College work with Artists in Residence in the Gallery & since 1994 Old Masters,
Young Poets, a charity sponsored by Lord Leverhulme, has enabled children from
Wirral Schools to go into the Williamson to look at the paintings & artifacts, and to
write in response.
Life Drawing Classes, lead by the Royal Academy in the Williamson, have become an important part of the A level curriculum for Art & Design students in Wirral Schools.
To launch the project Inside / Outside Nigel Frost of Architecture Workshops lead
a stimulating workshop for primary & secondary teachers in the Gallery, July 1999.
The Williamson Art Gallery plays a vital role in collaborating between artists, schools, sponsors & the community.