All about the LSWLDA

Liverpool DA, as it was then known, was officially founded in 1921. Prior to this our area was encompassed in the Lancashire, Cheshire and North Wales District Association founded in 1914, itself a replacement for Manchester DA founded in 1911 and dissolved in 1914.

This was of course before the formation of the Regions of the Club, which didn’t come along until 1948.

The importance of Liverpool as an area of the Club is emphasised by the first meeting of the Lancashire, Cheshire and North Wales DA being held in the City of Liverpool in 1915, followed by a Social. The last camping meet of 1915 attracted a record attendance of 28 campers, which included six children.

It was during this time that P J (PeeJay) Maddock, later to become the Club Chairman, designed the Club badge of a tepee, now used as the symbol of Camping Clubs and camping sites throughout the world.

Liverpool, along with Manchester and Queensferry, became sections of the parent DA in 1920 and shortly after that a local member, Topham Steele, who incidentally wrote many articles in the Club Magazine under the pseudonym of Pajaro-Raro, (from the Spanish for “Rare Bird”) suggested that a lot of the criticism levelled at the Club hierarchy that most events took place in the South, was justified and pointed out that it was up to members themselves to do something about it. And so it was that Liverpool DA was conceived from an area described as the liveliest in the whole of the Club at the time.

By 1921 there was more than sufficient support for Liverpool DA to be established in its own right and while the city flourished the rest of the original Lancashire Cheshire and North Wales DA covered the Region.

Liverpool was the twelfth DA to be formed although five of the original twelve had dissolved by this time replaced by others reflecting the ever tightening geographical areas covered.

The Club’s magazine was then known as ‘Camping’ with it’s Headquarters at Union Street in London and Club membership was at an all time high of 1500 (present membership, 2007, is in excess of 400,000)

By 1925 there were only seven active DA’s listed in the Clubs fixtures.

It is interesting to note that the parent DA produced the Club’s first ever DA newsletter called ‘Campers Pie’ in 1923.

Whilst it is relatively easy to plot the birth of our DA, and I am indebted to Hazel Constance, the Club Archivist, for a lot of the research used to write this history, what happened after that has no recorded information other than old minute books and the occasional fixture list.