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The Albert Dock in Liverpool, England, was opened in 1846 by its namesake, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Based on plans submitted in 1839 by the architect Jesse Hartley for a combined dock and warehouse system, shipping entered the dock from either Canning Half Tide Dock to the North or Salthouse Dock to the east.
The Albert Dock was built entirely of cast iron, brick, and stone, with no structural wood; it was the first building in the UK to be built in such a manner. It was also the first fire-proof warehousing system in the world. In 1848 it was upgraded to feature the world's first hydraulic warehouse hoist system. The five Grade I buildings make the Albert Dock complex the largest set of Grade 1 Listed Buildings in the UK.
The dock closed to shipping in 1972 and suffered from dereliction for a period until it was redeveloped in the early 1980s by the Merseyside Development Corporation; this work included rebuilding a top corner of a warehouse which had been knocked off by a WWII bomb. The buildings now contain a variety of bars, restaurants and museums, and office space.
It is used as a ship dock once a year for the Liverpool Tall Ships festival.