History

Until the Second World War, Kirkby was a rural area on the edge of Liverpool. During the war, a huge munitions factory was built on agricultural land on the edge of Kirkby, and after the war, this was converted into a large industrial estate. At the same time, there was a need for new housing to replace bomb damaged and sub standard housing in Liverpool. As this was the era of new towns being built all over the country, the Liverpool Corporation bought a large area of land off the Earl of Sefton in and around Kirkby, and the new town of Kirkby was built. The first houses were finished in 1952, and for the next few years, Kirkby grew rapidly.

Many of the people moving out to Kirkby were young families, and the need for facilities for children and young people was recognised by the Church of England parish of Kirkby, and so the idea for Centre 63 was born.

The foundation stone was laid by Harold Wilson MP, later to visit again for the Centre’s 25th anniversary, by which time he was Lord Wilson. Princess Margaret was also a visitor in those early days in 1965.

The Centre became an independent charity in 1988.

In 1996, the Centre suffered a fire that destroyed the snooker hall and caused significant damage to the rest of the building. Despite this, the Youth Club kept operating, and funding was raised for the Centre to be rebuilt even better than before.

Please add any other memories below if you are one of the thousands of people to have been through the Centre over the years.

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