Thursday, 10 October 2013

Hyde Lads Club


On display for the Heritage Open Day at St Thomas the Apostle were some memorabilia collected by Harold Greenhalgh, Honorary Secretary (1972-92) of Hyde Lads Club.

The club was founded in 1928 by the then Chief Constable of Hyde, J W Danby. The club first started in Hyde Town Hall in a room over the adjoining Police Station yard but quickly moved into Water Street Sunday School. A public appeal for funds allowed Mr Danby to purchase the premises on Beeley Street which had previously been the local Police Station and Courthouse. A plaque outside the club commemorated the fact that Judge Thomas Hughes, author of Tom Brown's Schooldays used to preside there as a Circuit Judge.


The club was officially opened in 1930 by the HRH The Duke of Gloucester. Catering for boys from the ages of 13 to 21, it contained a large gymnasium used for gymnastics, boxing, five-a-side football and basketball, a snooker room with three tables and a canteen area on the ground floor. On the first floor was an assembly room used for table tennis, a smaller table tennis room, a library where chess and board games were played, a darts room and two small rooms used for hobby activities such as photography and leather work. Located at the rear of the club over a garage which had once been used as the town's mortuary was a woodwork room.


At its peak the club, a voluntary organisation, ran four football teams, a gymnastic team which gave displays throughout the area, a boxing section, a champion winning table tennis team and a "Black & White Minstrel Troop" who travelled around local towns giving shows. In later year girls were allowed to join a judo section with some members taking part in international competitions.

In 1992 the building was declared electrically unsafe and with no funds available for the necessary repair it was forced to close and was demolished.

Only the signage and plaque to Thomas Hughes were saved and are on display in Beeley Street car park as can be seen on Hyde Daily Photo.

4 comments:

  1. just a few words to say i was a minstral at Hyde Lads club, and performed along side Ernie goodwin, who at that time ran the boxing team.We the Minstrels travelled to the shows in Mr saxons fish van, all over to entertain for charity.We won second place in the all England Minstrel competition staged in Manchester.

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    1. Hi - it would be advantageous to find out if the land was actually passed to the people of Hyde as it is now a car park ?

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  2. It is amazing to actually find out something about the lads club as I have often seen the plaque and was told by someone in the mall the land had been passed to the people of Hyde yet it is now a car park - do you have any reference to it's owners now?

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    1. I've no idea - Asplands was supposed to be left to the people of Hyde but it still got sold off for private development. I suspect it is the local council who always have the final say and who probably have the best lawyers.

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