The Government established the "Playground Committee" and appointed the then Assistant Secretary Sir Southorn as its chairman. The Director General of the Chinese YMCA, Mr. McPherson, was on duty to study the open areas of Hong Kong and Kowloon, and to be responsible for the construction of playgrounds and stadiums.
The Assistant Secretary Sir Southorn took the lead in establishing the Children's Playground Association.
The government allocated land for the construction of children’s playgrounds in the newly reclaimed land in Wan Chai, Shantung Street in Mong Kok and the wasteland of Tong Mi Road, and was transferred to the Children’s Playground Association together with six playgrounds including King’s Park, Pak Kung Garden, and Wan Chai Reclamation. manage. Among them, the newly reclaimed ground in Wan Chai is named "Southorn Stadium", and a sports ground in Mong Kok is named "Macpherson Stadium". In the same year, the Association began to organize the Hong Kong Street Children's Athletic Games until the eve of the Japanese invasion and occupation of Hong Kong.
In 1941, the Japanese army attacked Hong Kong Island. Wan Chai was violently bombed by the Japanese army, causing serious casualties and few people on the streets. At that time, the six playgrounds in the possession of the association suffered severe damage, and the association's services were temporarily suspended until 1945. It was not until 1953 that the Association reorganized the Hong Kong Street Children's Athletic Games.
The association received funding from the Memorial Fund for Martyrs and government subsidies to build a welfare building on Southorn Stadium, which was originally just a vacant lot without any buildings. Later, the National War Memorial Welfare Center and Southorn Indoor Stadium were opened. It was the largest stadium in Hong Kong that year and the first indoor stadium in Hong Kong.
The association plans to convert Southorn Yard into a standard indoor venue.
The association unconditionally returned the land of the Southorn Stadium and the National Memorial Welfare Building to the government for the development of the Hong Kong Island Line of the MTR and the construction of the Wan Chai Station. The government rebuilt Southorn Stadium, the Southorn Center was built next door, with government offices, indoor sports fields, and Hang Lung built Southorn Gardens. The area of Southorn Stadium has been greatly reduced and it has become what it is today.
The association has been transformed from a statutory body fully funded by the government to a self-financing non-profit organization. It only retains the operation of indoor venues, and the association has changed from a manager to a tenant.
The redesigned Southorn indoor venues reopened their services, and the venue services were transformed into a self-financing operation mode, and a license for public entertainment venues was required.
Southorn Stadium has received generous donations from the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, Environment and Conservation Fund and Sir David Trench Fund for Recreation.
Southorn Indoor Stadium was renamed as Southorn Stadium and underwent major renovations. From the lighting system to the floor, from the seats to the large screen, it will be transformed again in the direction of environmental protection and energy saving.
Southorn Stadium received the Sir David Trench Fund for Recreation (the main fund) to help improve the venue’s lighting, sound absorption and hanging point equipment, which integrates multiple functions and makes it more convenient for service users.
Southorn Stadium successfully applied for funding from the Jockey Club Charities Trust through the Chief Executive’s Community Funding Scheme to build a series of barrier-free facilities in the venue, which is expected to be completed in early 2022.