Where does Shirley Ballas visit in her episode of WDYTYA?

By Rosemary Collins, 26 July 2018 - 10:00am

Shirley Ballas began her journey at Birkenhead Central Library before following the trail to South Africa. Here are the places she visited...

The exterior of the Picton Reading Room at Liverpool Central Library, where Shirley learned about the life of her great grandmother Clara (Credit: Getty Images)
The exterior of the Picton Reading Room at Liverpool Central Library, where Shirley learned about the life of her great grandmother Clara (Credit: Getty Images)

Birkenhead Central Library

Birkenhead Central Library, where Shirley meets genealogist Karen Murphy to learn about the lives of her great grandparents, George and Clara, has extensive resources and archives for those researching local and family history. 
 

Hoylake

Hoylake, where Shirley's great grandmother Clara and her children once lived, is located on the Wirral Peninsula. The small seaside town is known for being the hometown of James Bond actor Daniel Craig and indie rock band The Coral.
 

Liverpool Central Library

It’s at Liverpool Central Library that Shirley meets historian Dr Fern Riddell to discover more about Clara’s life in the USA – including the tragic story of her divorce and subsequent hospitalisation. The library, which comprises three Grade II*-listed buildings, holds extensive records relating to Liverpool and its environs.
 

The National Library of South Africa, Cape Town

The National Library of South Africa in Cape Town, where Shirley meets genealogist Heather MacAlister, was founded in 1818 and holds archives of national importance. There is also a sister site in Pretoria, which officially became part of the National Library in 1999.
 

St George’s Cathedral

St George’s Cathedral, where Shirley meets the Very Rev Michael Weeder to find out more about her South African forebears, “is the oldest cathedral in Southern Africa and the mother church of the Anglican Diocese of Cape Town”.
 

Bo-Kaap Museum

Established in 1978, the Bo-Kaap Museum tells the story of the local Muslim community and the freed slaves who made their home there during the 19th century. It is one of 12 national museums located in Cape Town currently managed by Iziko Museums.
 

Cape Town Central Library

It’s at Cape Town Central Library that Shirley meets historian Professor Vivian Bickford-Smith to learn about her 4x great grandmother, Caroline Otto, and her origins in Madagascar.

 

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Five things you might not know about Shirley Ballas
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WDYTYA? episode summary: Shirley Ballas
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