James Orchestral Tour – Liverpool Philharmonic – 7 May 2023

Liverpool Philharmonic, Hope Street, Liverpool L1 9BP

About the Venue

The present Philharmonic Hall is the second hall to stand on the the site on Hope Street – the original hall which was opened in 1849, burned down in 1933 in a huge inferno that 100 firefighters were unable to stop and which had 10,000 people on the streets to watch it. The hall and its magnificent organ were destroyed, along with its music library, but a number of autograph books and photos dating from 1848 were saved as they were stored in a fire-proof safe. The hall was rebuilt and opened in 1939, just before the outbreak of WW2 and refurbished in 1992, with a plaque commemorating the orchestra members drowned in the sinking of the Titanic in 1912 added. A further renovation was completed in 2015, adding a new performance space called the Music Room.

The Hall itself is a stunning Art Deco space, with original 1930s fixtures and fittings and arranged in four main sections – stalls, Grand Circle, Upper Circle and Rear Circle (although the layout isn’t circular at all!) and with boxes on the sides and between the stalls and Grand Circle.

Getting There


The Eurovision Opening Ceremony is being held on the same day as the James show, on St George’s Plateau, just outside Liverpool Lime Street station. This is going to be very popular, as it is a cheap, open air event and has several bands playing, including a Frankie Goes To Hollywood reunion, so there will be a very lot of people heading to this event, which starts from 5.30pm and ends at 10pm, so will affect your journey and parking – please get to the venue and parked up as early as possible and allow extra travelling time.

If you can get to the Hall without going near to Lime Street and St George’s, please do. The most direct route would be via the M62 and Edge Lane rather than the M58, which takes you past St George’s.


The closest car park is Caledonia Street Car Park, right by the venue, postcode L7 7DX. This is a first come, first served and only 60 spaces, so you will need to arrive early for this one. Click here for the Liverpool Echo guide to parking near to the Philharmonic, some of which are detailed below.

Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral, L3 5TQ.

If you’re not doing the VIP, and bearing in mind how busy Liverpool will be that day, a good option might be to book the Metropolitan Cathedral Car Park (the spiky one). This is normally reserved for Visitors Only but the Philharmonic offer pre-booked spaces specifically for people attending concerts – there is a direct link to book for the James concert HERE – Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral is situated on Mount Pleasant and is a 5 minute walk along Hope Street from Liverpool Philharmonic Hall. By car on entering the city follow the brown tourist signs to Cathedrals. The car park is situated underneath the Cathedral itself. Please note there is no overnight parking and the car park can only be entered from 6pm onwards.

ParkBee, Liverpool Central Village Car Park, L1 4EF

Situated on Heathfield Street, just off Renshaw Street. Just 10 minutes walk from Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, this car park is open 24/7. For parking prices and further information, please click here.

Please note the official postcode for this car park is L1 4AT. After testing both postcodes, we found that the L1 4EF postcode had an easier and more direct route to the car park on the majority of navigation systems and helped to avoid confusion with the city’s one way roads.

Liverpool Cathedral Car Park (the big red one), L1 7AZ

The other Cathedral (the Anglian, red stone one), also has parking and is away from the centre and may be a good option – you can find details here and they are open all day and you pay on exit.

Blackburne House Car Park, L8 7PE, is a 2 minute walk away on Hope Street and needs to be pre-booked. Details for this can be found here – You will need to change the dates and times at the top of the page.

Paddington Village Car Park, Elm Grove, L7 3FA  is a large multi storey situated a 15 min walk from the Philharmonic and away from the centre, so should be less busy.


Liverpool Philharmonic is a 15 minute walk from Lime Street station, via Renshaw Street to the Bombed Out Church and along Hardman Street to Hope Street.


The Hall is on the 75, 80 and 86 bus routes from the city centre, and Merseytravel.gov.uk has an excellent Journey Planner on its website.

Things to do

If you have some time in the city, there are so many attractions to visit, whether you want to shop, chill out by the waterfront, visit museums or explore the music history of the city. The Visit Liverpool site has guides to all the areas of the city but bear in mind that it will be exceptionally busy, with it being a Bank Holiday and the opening ceremony for Eurovision.  

Eat and Drink

The usual pubs and restaurants in Liverpool will likely be really busy – if you can wander further over towards the Philharmonic, you will find fabulous places to eat and drink around Bold Street, a quirky area connecting the retail area of the centre to the Knowledge and Georgian Quarters, and en route to the Philharmonic Hall.  

Papilon, Hope Street – close to the Hall, a gastropub with a wide range of food choices and an outside seating area 

The Flute, 35 Hardman St – sports pub with pool table serving food, close to the Hall 

The Refinery, Hope St – contemporary bar serving food and with outside seating areas, close to the venue 

The Philharmonic Dining Rooms – reputed to be one of John Lennon’s favourite pubs, this pub combines music history with Sunday Roasts and great Pie dishes.

You can find a hi-res, zoomable Liverpool centre map here – https://guidemapsonline.com/liverpool-city-map/

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