This was built in 1904 when the railway from Liverpool to Southport was electrified. After this use it had several industrial functions. It is now derelict eyesore. There have been suggestions in the last few years to use it as a theatre. View from the south, from the other side of the railway.
The Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Society website Link
"It took 12 months to electrify the 23 miles of double track from Liverpool to Crossens, an area to the north of Southport. A powerhouse was built at Formby and was supplemented along the line by three substations and four battery stations.
Power of 600 volts dc was supplied to the trains via a live third rail. Motor trucks were fitted with two 150 hp motors, giving 600 hp per motor car. Braking was by vacuum with special reservoirs to give rapid braking release."
For photos held at National Railway Museum from 1911 etc, in particular showing coal conveyor system, see Science and Society website Link
Extra information from a former manager:
" I worked firstly for Ross Insulation Ltd , then Ross Warmafoam Ltd, then Metal Closures Rosslite Ltd, MCL was the parent company from 1962 when I joined until closure in 1990, I retired in 1989, the company Mr Ross was running was called W Ballard Ross Engineers ltd which stopped trading when MCL took them over, MCL were mainly interested in the polystyrene side of things.
Although the plant made DIY products it also made high quality package moulding, [including MOD work, in 1977 Metal Closures Rosslite Ltd at The Powerhouse were making expanded polystyrene packs for transport of aircraft windshields], it also made complex insulation for building industry , road work, bridge building and the oil industries, there was a steady workforce of about 90 persons rising to 120 at peak times.
The plant was closed and sold to a food distributer in 1990 and only lasted a couple of years then fell into disrepair, the cost of maintaining such a large building was just too much and soon after `Travellers` moved onto the site and plundered it.