Samuel Swire, the town Mayor, was the Rugby Club’s first President in 1872.
Born: 3rd January 1839 (Ashton Under Lyme)
Died: 9th January 1895 (Southport)
Using the Cemetery Map.
Largely an honorary position, over the years the title of president of the towns club would often be taken by the mayor. Samuel Swire was the first.
Born in Ashton Under Lyme, he became a prominent local politician and member of the Liberal party after retiring as a Coal proprietor.
He was elected to the Southport Council in 1870 and was twice elected the Mayor of Southport.
He was a director of several companies including the Southport Pavilion and Winter Gardens Company and Southport Pier Company.
This monument was built for his wife, who was tragically killed in 1874. Her nightdress was ignited by an unguarded gas fire in the bedroom and the fire was said to have been so severe that she died almost instantly.
When he died he left an estate behind which was worth roughly in the region of £11m in today’s money, which goes some way to explain the grandeur of the monument he built for his wife.
His son, Samuel Henry Swire also shares the same plot, he was a Justice of the Peace just like his father, and clearly shared his father’s love of sport.
You can imagine how confusing it was for us doing research into his father when he shared so many similarities.
He became the first secretary of the Lancashire County Cricket Club and took part in their initial first class match against Middlesex.
Let’s take a look at how the first rugby football club was formed on our next stop, George Pilkington.