Victoria Working Men's Club
|Victoria Working Men's Club, Kew|
Exterior view of Victoria Working Men's Club, Kew
|Architectural style||Tin tabernacle|
|Town or city||Kew, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames|
|Structural system||Corrugated iron|
The Victoria Working Men's Club was a working men's club at 275 Sandycombe Road in Kew, Richmond, London which operated from 1892 until 2015, when the building it occupied was sold to a property developer. In February 2017 Richmond upon Thames Council approved a planning application to demolish the building, and erect a new community building and six flats.
The club was housed in Victoria & St John's, a building in timber clad with corrugated iron, which from 1876 to 1889 had been an iron church on the opposite side of Sandycombe Road, housing St Luke's Church and St Luke's School. It was moved to its present position in 1889 when the current St Luke's Church was built in The Avenue. Its close association with the history of Kew led to it being listed in 2005 by the local council as a Building of Townscape Merit.
The club was renowned for the amount of money it raised to send cigarettes to British soldiers at the front in the First World War. It was visited by four overseas prime ministers and many British government ministers and by members of the British Royal Family. A photograph shows Alderman Szlumper seated between the Duke and Duchess of York (later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth). David Blomfield, former Chairman of the Richmond Local History Society, said: "In all, the club boasted of visits from 50 such VIPs over seven years – probably a unique record for a club of its size, and most certainly for one set in such accommodation".
The building continued to be used by the club as a billiards hall until 2015; it is now empty. As of 2016, an extension at the back of the building was still used by a school for Japanese martial arts.
- Richardson, David (2003). "Victoria and St John's Working Men's Club". Local History and Heritage: Community Archive. London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
- "The churches" (PDF). Conservation Area Study: Kew Road no. 55, Kew Gardens no. 15 & Lawn Crescent no. 20. London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. May 2007. p. 4. Retrieved 20 April 2016.
- Blomfield, David (1994). Kew Past. Phillimore & Co Ltd. pp. 116–117. ISBN 0-85033923-5.
- Angus, Robert (23 February 2017). "The Town and Country Planning Act 1990, (as amended) Decision Notice Application: 16/0905/FUL" (PDF). London Borough of Richmond upon Thames.
- "275 Sandycombe Road, Richmond upon Thames". Move Hut. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- "Locally listed buildings". London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. 21 January 2015. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- "Buildings of Townscape Merit" (PDF). London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
- Stearn, Roger T (2007). "Patrons and potatoes: Aspects of an Edwardian council school". Richmond History: Journal of the Richmond Local History Society. 28: 78–79.
- Szlumper, James 1834–1926 Sir James Szlumper Cuttings Files, 1869-1919. Richmond upon Thames Local Studies Library and Archive. GB 358 DC56 on the Archives Hub website. Retrieved 22 March 2019.
- "Welcome to the Anglo Japanese Martial Arts School". Retrieved 4 February 2016.
Blog post on demolition and historical photo: []