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MerseysideAScardInterClub1959JPEG.jpg (32397 bytes)
1st and Best in Show awarded to Les Connell at the Inter-club between Merseyside AS and Southport AS, 1959.

 

 

 

Merseyside AS in the
1950s

During the 1950s the Society went from strength to strength and activities included another ‘Brains Trust’ and lectures by the President, Mr. J. Laughland, on Siamese Fighters. Mr. Laughland made regular contributions, notably crosswords, to The Aquarist magazine...

After World War 2, Bill Bailey was a customer of York Aquaria Company before he moved to the Isle of Man where he opened a Public Aquarium on Strand Street, Douglas. He later returned to Liverpool when he bought out the entire stock of the York Aquaria Company (Ernie and Norman selling up due to pressure of full-time work). Within three weeks he had found premises in the basement of 1 Dawson Street, Liverpool, his first advertisement as The Liverpool Aquaria Company appearing in the Aquarist & Pondkeeper in 1951...

1951, and the BAF (British Aquarist Festival) was opened at the Exhibition Hall, Zoological Gardens, Belle Vue, Manchester, for the first time, a four day event sponsored by The Aquarist magazine. The event was opened by Robert Helpman, famous in the world of ballet and theatre, who was later presented with a furnished aquaria. Despite the fact that over 17,000 people visited the Festival it proved to be a financial disaster with debts which ran into four figures...

At the Liverpool Flower Show the Merseyside AS staged a display of twelve Furnished Aquaria and a stocked garden pool into which visitors tossed coins to the value of £3-10-0 (£3.50), this was given to the Local Hospital Tank Fund, an idea started by The Aquarist magazine to assist societies up and down the country to donate a tank to a local hospital and keep it maintained...

Mr. W. J. Thornley, a keen aquarist, formed the Liverpool Schools Nature Study Society at Salisbury Street School (L3) were he worked. The room at the school contained six tanks of coldwater fish and pond life, two tropical tanks with guppies etc. and two vivaria, as well as rabbit hutches, guinea-pigs and a wildflower table. Days out were organised at weekends to go pond-hunting in Thurstaston, Wirral, to keep their tanks stocked with newts, carp and other aquatic inmates...

The Society was given a boost in moral when Granada Television televised an interview with Messrs. Les Connell and Mr. Preston in the Friday Night programme.

Harry Alderson (Treasurer, 1946-47) made slate-base fishtank's with glass fronts, one in particular was made of oak with plate glass sides and a metal ‘base heater’ heated by two 40 watt bulbs, which were located beneath the slate to heat the water...

Yet another eventful year for the Merseyside AS members. Society members Danny Hughes, Brian Roe and Dave Jones loaded the Show Stand, constructed by Syd Messenger, onto the roof rack of Danny's 1933 silver box-type Austin 7 and drove to the British Aquarist Festival. The highest praise was recorded to Brian Roe for his work reforming the Show Stand to make it a suitable entry for the competitive Best Show Stand at the BAF. Brian was assisted by his son, Philip Roe, Danny Hughes, Les Connell and Bill Kelly. The Show Stand was entered in the Best Show Stand competition (judged by public ballot) coming 3rd and was awarded £10 - a very proud moment for those connected with the construction of the Stand...

1959 also saw the first new-styled Show Cards introduced showing the new society logo of an Angelfish on a red background with the word 'Merseyside' across the bottom. Malcolm Connell distinctly recalls his father, Les Connell, saying that he "…designed the new society badge." The new Show Cards were used, in conjunction with the old ones, from 1959 onwards...

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JeffriesTankard.jpg (43663 bytes)
Jeffries Tankard Cup for Furnished Aquaria.
The oldest trophy in the society dated 1952.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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last update :: February 2006
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