Portrait by her cousin Arnold Auerbach

LEVY, Muriel Augusta   [1903 - 1972]

On 16th April 1955 there was a grand opening of a new shop, Clarendon Furnishing, at the Quadrant, Hoylake. The young man being installed by his family as the manager of the new venture was Brian Epstein, soon to be world famous but then quite unknown. The celebrity opening the store was Muriel Levy, a familiar name then to radio listeners for several decades but now largely forgotten.

She was born on 2nd August 1903 in Paddington, London, the daughter of Louis Levy and his wife Amelia Auerbach. (Muriel was a cousin of the British artist Arnold Auerbach). Louis was an immigrant from Russian-ruled Poland escaping the pogroms, setting himself up in business as a boot and polish dealer. By 1911 the family had settled in Liverpool, in the reasonably grand surroundings of 76 Bedford Street L7 (another Georgian house lost by demolition).

On 26th June 1924, the Bioscope journal, published a short note announcing that “Miss Muriel Levy, of Bedford Street Liverpool…has been chosen out of 150 applicants to be the “Auntie”, whose talks at the Liverpool Broadcasting headquarters, will delight thousands of young radio enthusiasts. (She) is a sister of Mr Cyril Levy, the manager of the Scala Picture House, Argyle Street.”  She was thus in at the very start of the pioneering 6LV radio station which had started broadcasting from Liverpool on 11th June 1924, its first studio being above a café in Lord Street.

Muriel Levy soon showed herself to be a multi-talented women ideally equipped to achieve success in the new medium. By the late 1920’s she was producing ‘Children’s Hour’ and ‘Woman’s Hour’ for the station. An accomplished musician the radio schedules of the pre-war era abound with programmes in which she devised and performed variety shows with such well-known names as Wilfred Pickles and Violet Carson (famed later as Ena Sharples in Coronation Street). Such was the success of her radio performances that she was given a weekly column in the Liverpool Echo entitled Auntie Muriel’s Treasure Chest.

She merited an entry in the 1954 edition of the Radio & Television Who’s Who, which records that she performed as one of the Three Semis, a harmony singing act. Astonishingly she is also credited with over 3000 scripts for children’s and adult programmes, ranging from short sketches to a dramatization of The Forsyte Saga.

Notwithstanding the demands made on her by her broadcasting career she was very active across a range of charitable ventures. She sat on the Committee of the National Library for the Blind, served as Chairman of the Liverpool Child Welfare Fund and was Vice-President of the Women’s Branch of the Royal British Legion. In 1928 she was a founder member of the Liverpool branch of Soroptimists and served as the Club’s President in 1958.

Around 1930 she was living at 4 Cavendish Gardens L8, later moving to a 1st floor apartment at 3 Belvidere Road L8. From the 1950’s until her death she lived in Allerton at 84 Queens Drive L18 (near neighbour to Jimmy Tarbuck at 84).

She married twice, in 1932 to Rudolph F Taylor. In the aforementioned Radio & TV Who’s Who she is shown as Mrs D C Zucker. She had two daughters. She died on 30th March 1972.

A young and then unknown Brian Epstein standing with Muriel Levy at the opening of his family's furniture store in Hoylake. She was friends of the Epstein family, living near them on Queens Drive and both being members of the Jewish community.

Cavendish Gardens L8

Muriel Levy lived in apartment number 5 at the start of the 1930's.

3 Belvidere Road L8

Muriel Levy had an apartment in the house in the 1930's.

84 Queens Drive L18

Her home from the 1950's onwards.


There is no one particular source on Muriel Levy but bits and pieces can be found here and there. There is a brief biography on the Soroptimists website.