Meccano – An introduction & a visit too if you wish

The Frank Hornby Heritage Centre within Maghull’s Meadows Leisure Centre.

As a Trustee of the Maghull based charitable group the Frank Hornby Trust I found the introductory video – linked below – from Sharon Brown (National Museums Liverpool’s Land Transport Curator) very useful.

As a 60+ year old I can of course remember Meccano, Dinky Toys & Hornby Railways very well but younger folk may not, so the video may help connect younger generations with a huge piece of both Liverpool’s history and the toys of previous generations of their own family too.

Another view of the Frank Hornby Heritage Centre.

The Frank Hornby Heritage Centre, which is within Maghull’s Meadows Leisure Centre, is presently open to visit each Tuesday and Friday (10am to 4pm) but only with a previously made booking. This is of course due to Covid 19 restrictions. If you want to visit please e-mail so that a visiting slot can be arranged.

Frank Hornby lived for most of his aldult life in Maghull on Merseyside. His 1st house (The Hollies) in Station Road has an English Heritage Blue Plaque on it and his 2nd house (Quarry Brook) which is now the 6th Form block of Maricourt High School a Maghull Town Council plaque.

Maghull – Frank Hormby Trust Update

I have not blogged about the Trust for a while now but it recently purchased an original postcard as depicted below:-

Whilst the used postcard is not in the best of condition it is a very significant shot of the part of Station Road in Maghull (in the 1920’s?) where Frank Hornby first lived (at The Hollies) and where English Heritage installed their Blue Plaque on 6th July 2000. The plaque had been requested by Maghull Town Council to celebrate the town’s most famous resident and it sparked a local historical plaque scheme promoted by the Town Council.

Hornby’s house, where he lived for 10 years, is the one with the bay window furthest away from you when viewing the postcard. The scene is looking down Station Road with the Great Mogul Pub and Maghull Railway Station being behind the photographer.

When he left the Hollies Hornby moved just a few yards down Station Road to Quarry Brook which is now a part of Maricourt High School.

Click on the postcard to enlarge it.

The Trust has a Facebook page at:-

It also has a significant display of Frank Hornby related memorabilia and products from his Liverpool Binns Road factory in Meadows Leisure Centre on KGV Park in Maghull. They are in the Frank Hornby Room which is immediately on your left as you enter the main doors of the Leisure Centre. The room is well used for various health, fitness and community activities so its best to check with the Leisure Centre before you set out to look at the display to see when it is free.

This shot was taken whilst cleaning of the display cases was taking place in 2016.

Maghull – It’s historic plaques – One went absent without leave.

Some time ago I raised the odd disappearance of the historic plaque on Liverpool Road North outside the Old Forge. It had been erected by Maghull Town Council and the Olsen family who live there, in celebration of Maghull’s last blacksmith business.

I’ve heard no more since then from the Town Council who were looking into the disappearance so I have sent them a quick reminder today.

This is the missing Maghull Town Council plaque as it once was before it was mysteriously removed.

This is the missing Maghull Town Council plaque as it once was before it was mysteriously removed.

Whilst on the subject of historic plaques in Maghull I suspect there is a bit of confusion from a thread I have seen on a Maghull Facebook Group page. There is only one plaque that was erected by English Heritage, that’s the one on Frank Hornby’s first house in Station Road.

This is the English Heritage Blue Plaque and as you can see it looks quite different to the Town Council type.

This is the English Heritage Blue Plaque and as you can see it looks quite different to the Town Council type.

All the other ‘blue’ plaques in the Town, of which there are quite a few, were erected by Maghull Town Council as part of its own historic plaque programme. The Maghull plaques can easily be identified by Town’s ‘M’ logo.

Post script:- It, the cast aluminum plaque, has just been replaced by a vinyl one as it would seem that those who nicked it may well have do so for its scrap value.