The Society was formed in 1974, and for the first few years it inhabited a variety of premises around the town, some more salubrious than others. 

It moved to its present location at 57a Portland Street in 1987. This building was the Stationmaster's house for the original Southport station, part of the Liverpool, Crosby and Southport Railway, which opened on 21st July 1848.

Merseyrail's Southport terminus is now at Chapel Street, a little further down the line.


SMRS clubhouse.jpg
The house and garden are all that remains of the station. It's a Grade 2 listed building, which meant that RailTrack (remember them?) couldn't easily demolish it, so they rented it to us.

The building it was in a derelict state and required complete restoration. For safety reasons the side entrance was replaced by a new door on Portland Street. 

The old style crossing barriers have been replaced, and the signal box demolished. The hedge has been removed, which gives more light into the garden.
Our location means that we are within the loading gauge of the grown-up line. We therefore need to be careful to avoid sudden movement whilst taking the air near the garden fence, or else stress-related illness in Merseyrail drivers would reach greater heights than ever before.
Starting restoration.jpg
The building was restored by 1989, but because of its age it requires constant maintenance. One conundrum is that to get a ladder up the east elevation requires footing it against the 3rd rail of the down line. And they never turn the current off....

The lease requires us to maintain it, so we have to periodically find funds for repairs and renovations. An important source of income is the annual exhibition, which so far has helped us to remain in the black (or at least the pale grey) within needing to raise the subscription beyond its current modest level.
Southport nameplate.jpg
The name 'Southport' was carried on an LMS Patriot, no. 45527. 

Our nameplate was cast from the same mould, but not carried on the loco. It hangs above the fireplace in the club lounge, hopefully well-secured.

A more detailed history, produced in 2013 as part of our 40th Anniversary celebrations, can be downloaded here.