LOCAL HISTORY SECTION
History Group Report January 2016
Recent contacts include an e-
Also from Australia we have had recent contact from a descendant of the Mackerell family (who were well known as small farmers here in the 19th Century), who is researching his family history and hopes to visit Formby this year.
Future Meetings Programme. History Group Meetings will continue to alternate with General Meetings and follow the sequence already established. Speakers and topics are currently being identified for the year commencing next September.
Ravenmeols Trails Official Opening – A full colour brochure has been prepared with professional assistance and Information Panels design and contents are being finalised. Finance for a booklet to be written by ourselves has been allocated by Sefton Coast. Although the research has already been completed, writing and editing this will take a little extra time.
Two local Cottages saved! Having lost so many old vernacular cottages, some listed, in the last half century it is good to report the saving of two, 1 Southport Road, and 2 Timm’s Lane. Unfortunately the older part of 1 Southport Road was beyond saving but a very commendable effort has been made by its new owner with advice from English Heritage to preserve as much as possible. No 2 Timms Lane was also in a very poor condition but now saved and again being lived in.
FCS Archives, equipment and museum items. Now that I have a little more time the opportunity will be taken to improve the organisation and accessibility of our Local History archives and library. Storage however is still a considerable problem. Medlar Lodge remains over-
Future Plans, 2016 activities. Possible ‘Formby Milestones’ publication. It has been suggested that some of the articles on Local History written for the Newsletter in the first instance should be re-
Formby War Memorials. During the Centenary of the beginning of WW1 there is currently great national interest in the identification and preservation of Memorials erected to remember the men who gave their lives on behalf of their country. In conjunction with Formby Parish Council we are ascertaining the state and history of our several Formby War Memorials. Apart from the ‘civic’ one standing in its dedicated Memorial Garden overlooking the junction of Chapel Lane and Three Tuns Lane, there are a number of others including of course the one in the grounds of Our Lady of Lourdes. A number of us are checking the history, continued existence and state of these. Surprisingly the main ‘civic’ memorial has never been ‘listed’ for protection. At one time in the 1960’s it was proposed to remove it to make space for a proposed Multi-
Britain’s First Lifeboat Station. There is almost nothing left of the remains of this historic station but an archaeological examination of the site is being organised. We do know however that these remains are of the third structure on the site. The first (ca.1776) was a wooden structure, described as “a shade”, the second and third were brick-
Signal Station. Early photographs of the site and adjoining dunes show a small square brick building with a chimney on a dune (now gone) about 100 metres North of the Station. The purpose of this has long been obscure but it is now revealed* that this was the site of a Signal Station constructed during the Napoleanic War, in 1804, one of a line extending from Formby in the North round the mouth of the Mersey and Dee to Holyhead in the South. It remains marked on maps and Charts until at least the early 19thC but its purpose has only recently come to light* – another facility to aid the protection of the Port of Liverpool.
* Large, Frank, ‘Faster than the Wind -
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