My good friend Les French (Chairman of the Maghull based Frank Hornby Trust) has a story that goes along the lines of Hornby used the buildings at Maghull Station as the basis for his tinplate model buildings. And you know Les could well be right as we know that Frank lived literally yards away* from Maghull Station and that he used the train regularly if not daily.
So bearing that in mind the slow decline of the old Station Master’s house in Melling Lane adjacent to the level crossing over recent years has been very unfortunate. Here’s how it looked in 2006:-
This shot of the former Station Master’s House was taken in June 2006.
But whilst this historic local building looked to be down and out it has survived to be given a new lease of life and it looks like this today:-
It’s nice to see it being given a second chance even in a modernised form.
* Hornby lived firstly at ‘The Hollies’ on Station Road and then latter at ‘Quarry Brook’ in Hall Lane (still close to the station). Both still stand ‘The Hollies’ as a private house and ‘Quarry Brook’ as the 6th Form Block of Maricourt RC High School.
Hornby’s first house ‘The Hollies’ is in this postcard photo.
A Merseyrail train passes the former Maghull Signal Box @1990. The last track plan, from the now demolished box, is now on display as part of the Frank Hornby Trust’s exhibition area within the Town’s Meadows Leisure Center – Copyright Noted HSG
Take a while to sit back to look at this video on You Tube, it’s surprising what has changed since 1990 just using Maghull Station as an example:-
Maghull Station in 1991 looking south – the old semaphore signals are of course long gone – Copyright Noted HSG
At 17 minutes and 25 seconds on the video the train passes the former Maghull Signal Box (removed in 1994) and straight after the former Station Master’s House which was then falling into disuse and subsequently dereliction – see photos below – but it is rising from the ashes once again and being rebuilt as part of a new housing development on land behind the Liverpool bound platform.
Maghull Station Master’s House in July 2006
Maghull Station Master’s House May 2019
It is said that world famous toy maker Frank Hornby who lived in two separate houses in the Town, both close to Maghull Station (The Hollies & Quarry Brook), may have used Maghull’s station buildings as inspiration for his model buildings as he regularly took the train from his local station.
With thanks to Mike Penn for the lead to this posting
After many years of decline, it looks like work has now started to rebuild Maghull Station’s Station Masters House as part of the redevelopment and house building project behind the Liverpool bound platform. Here’s a photo I took on Remembrance Day on my way into Liverpool:-
It’s said (by no lesser person than Les French Chairman of the Maghull based Frank Hornby Trust) that the railway buildings of Maghull Station were a probable inspiration for Maghull’s world-famous toy maker Frank Hornby who lived just yards away from the station and who caught the train to work there regularly. On that basis, the derelict Station Master’s house has sadly been an unfortunate stain on the Town’s character in recent years.
Here’s hoping for a more positive future for a historic railway building………