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North West England

St John's Gardens (L1)

Thomas Major Lester

Fulham 1829 - 1903
Vicar of St Mary's Kirkdale, honorary Canon of the city of Liverpool; founder of charities for children in Liverpool
sir George Frampton

Liverpool /  Thomas Major Lester   Liverpool /  Thomas Major Lester


Statue of Lester in Anglican clerical dress, carrying a small girl. The idea was that he met the child, taken it up in his arms and was carrying it to some shelter.
The statue was unveiled in 25 May 1907 by Lord Derby, watched by 'about 500 poor children', organized 'by the Food and Betterment Society (of which Canon Lester was president for four years). Before leaving the headquarters of the association in Limekiln-lane the children enjoyed an ample meal provided by a lady admirer of Canon Lester.'




"give the child a fair chance"
he was a pioneer in fovnding
homes and schools where
destitvte children covld
be fed, clothed, edvcated
and started in life; and
worked enthvsiastically
for them to the end of
his days.
he was loved by all becavse
he showed love to all
vicar of st mary's kirkdale
for fifty years honorary
canon of liverpool rvral
dean of liverpool north
last chairman of the
liverpool school board
a fovnder and chairman
of stanley hospital
fovnder of major street
ragged school and the
kirkdale child charities


geo frampton r.a. 1907 (the 'N' is reversed)

St John's Gardens

The spot of the St John the Baptist church - demolished in 1898 - at it's cemetery - full in 1854 - was redeveloped and opened in 1904 as 'St John's Ornamental and Memorial Gardens'. The gardens were designed by the corporation surveyor Thomas Shelmerdine. In addition to the creation of flower beds, the gardens contain an assemblage of six statues of great men connected with Liverpool and the King's Liverpool Regiment monument.

In chronological order:

  1. Alexander Balfour, by Albert Bruce-Joy, 1889.*
  2. William Rathbone VI, by George Frampton, 1901.
  3. Sir Arthur Bower Forwood, by George Frampton, 1903.
  4. William Gladstone, by Thomas Brock, 1904.
  5. The King's Liverpool Regiment Monument, by W. Goscombe John, 1905.
  6. James Nugent, by Frederick Pomeroy, 1906.
  7. T. Major Lester, by George Frampton, 1907.
  8. RoadPeace Monument, by Tom Murphy, 2005.
* The Balfour statue was erected before the replanning of the area, it was later moved eastwards to its present location.


Sources & Information


Locatie (N 53°24'33" - W 2°58'53") (Satellite view: Google Maps)

Item Code: gbnw074; Photograph: 18 June 2023
Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
If you want to use photos, please contact us via the contact form (in Dutch, English or German).
© Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt

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