______________________________________________________________ Mark, Lynda, Freddie & Becky Hughes with resident medium Angela Mitchell 

The Old Club

old-club-ghost-hunt

In 1880, the Main building, was built by Oades & Son of Egham for a Temperance League. Originally constructed as a Coffee Tavern called the “Victoria”, the intent was to provide an alternative form of “refreshment” to try to reduce the alcohol consumption of the workmen involved in building the nearby Founders Hall of Royal Holloway College. It was opened in December 1880 by General Sir Alexander Taylor who was the principle of the Royal Indian Engineering College.

By 1910 The coffee tavern had evolved into a full “Temperance hotel”.

Around 1918/9, the Building was acquired by the Red Triangle Club, the sports orientated section of the YMCA who added the new main hall as an extension to the main building. The foundation stones laid by Princess Helena Victoria and Princess Christiana can be seen on the Harvest Road elevation either side of the hall exit.

By the late 1930’s the building had fallen into poor repair and was taken over by the Egham Urban District Council.

Throughout the war from 1940-1945, although difficult to imagine now, Englefield Green was considered far enough into the country to act as a safe haven. The building was used to provide the classrooms for pupils evacuated from the Roman Catholic schools of St. Joseph’s of Camberwell and St. Bernard’s of Stepney. The relative proximity of the village to London, prompted several families to move out to be with their children.

For twenty years after the war, the buildings were used as a school by St Cuthbert’s and St Jude’s Schools but by 1963, the building stood empty again to be used a social club for various groups and organisations. By the mid-1990s the buildings needed saving and it was nearly sold for development, but it was saved by the “St Jude’s Players” – a dramatic group and is now used as a social club and venue for clubs.

With such a varied history ranging from its origins as a Temperance Bar to housing school children during the war, its no doubt that the history has left it’s mark. What will you witness during our ghost hunts at this remarkable building?

Address: The Social Hall Harvest Road Englefield Green Surrey TW20 0QT

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