Research Update – Dec 2023

In terms of research I continue to investigate the fortunes of the Southport Rugby Club that was reborn in 1891 after Southport Olympic’s demise two years earlier. I now have a complete set of results for the 1891-92 season and these have been added to the results archive (here). Work will continue in this area in an effort to understand what became of the club and why it is understood that they only lasted for 2 years.

One piece of previously unknown information is that this club played at the Sports Ground on Sussex Road in the 1891-92 season. Whilst Southport Central had started out here, they departed in 1889 for Scarisbrick New Road, and the former home of Southport Olympic.
Knowing that the Sports Ground on Sussex Road was sold for housing development around this time and that a new site for their landlords, Southport Athletic Society, was to be located on the site of the current Meols Cop High School, I am sure I will soon discover another ground move for the Rugby club for the 1892-93 season.

Whilst researching I have been able to add to the results known for the Southport Central Old Boys, the second string of the association club Southport Central. They have now been added to the database, here. Due to Central’s ongoing participation in the Liverpool Senior Cup, and arrangement of more illustrious friendlies, the Old Boys stood in the first team to fulfill what should have been first team fixtures on two occasions.

I have continued to work on a revised database with a view to making it more resilient for future and to better record fixtures against the different “standards” of each club (e.g. Reserves, “A”, Youth, etc). This is an ongoing project that I have invested quite a lot of time into so far but is so far not visible to the outside world. It may not be visible for some time yet and therefore in the meantime I continue to update the “old”/current one. It will however bring considerable benefits in terms of users being able to build their own queries when it comes to statistics.

I am also continuing to work with the Wigan Athletic Heritage Project and in particular the development of their archives and museum, and I am hoping that one day space can be found at Southport for something similar. I did speak to Steve Dewsnip about the possibility of my private collection and archive being made more accessible to the public via the club in future. It was an idea that Steve Dewsnip was keen on, but as he has now departed the club, for now it will need to remain in storage and the idea put on the back burner. Hopefully the idea can be revisited in the future.