Labour Club looks for a new home

Old Luton Labour Club

  • The Upper George Street site on which Luton Labour Club was built, pictured in 1999 ahead of being converted into a nightclub.

[The Luton Reporter: Tuesday, September 2nd, 1919]

The membership of the Luton Labour Club and Institute has grown so tremendously since its removal from its first home in Cheapside, in which it was established some 11 years ago, that the necessity has arisen for the acquisition of headquarters which will afford larger accommodation than is furnished by the present premises at the Guildford Street corner of Bute Street.

We understand arrangements have been entered into to provide the Labour movement in Luton with permanent headquarters of its own in the course of the next 12 months. Negotiations have, in fact, been concluded for the purchase of the extensive residence and straw hat manufacturing premises in the occupation of Messrs S. Toyer & Co at 27 Upper George Street, and the deposit has been paid in respect of the purchase.

The purchase price is stated to be somewhere in the neighbourhood of between £2,500 and £3,000, and we hear it is proposed to go in for the erection of entirely new premises, specially designed to meet not only the needs of the social side of the club but also the requirements of the local trade union branches and the political side of the Labour movement.

The property possesses a considerable depth of garden ground, and it is claimed that the site will render possible the erection of a club second to none in the town. For the carrying out of the project there is being floated a Labour Club Building Company, similar to that which owns the Liberal Club, with subscriptions of £1 shares, and a large number of subscriptions have already been received.

We understand that the terms of purchase provide for possession being obtained not later than about 12 months hence, but it is hoped it may be possible to secure possession at an early date by mutual arrangement.

From what we hear it is likely that the next club to take into consideration a move to fresh quarters will be the Ivy Leaf Club of the Luton and District Discharged Sailors and Soldiers Association. We understand that the Association has the occupation of the present club up until November next year, and the fact that the career of the Association has so far been one of continual change of quarters had given rise to a strong feeling among some members that an early opportunity should be taken to get the club firmly housed in a home of its own.