The Top Club

January 2009 –  Rumours abound at the possible closure of that once so important social centre of this village – The Top Club. It would be difficult to describe how significant this place and its officials have been in past times. 

A well read article published in the Pontefract & Castleford Express by their ‘Club Night’ reporter Jim Daley sometime in the 1950’s confirms that view.

Went along to the luxurious Methley WM Club where friendliness
and hospitality was in abundance.  The frontage, previously a vicarage belies the interior.  The concert room is one of the most comfortable I have seen in my travels.
The outstanding feature being the floor which is fitted with luxurious carpet with the exception of the dance area.  A modern stage  embellishing the whole aspect.
There is also a luxury lounge and a games room all serviced by a central bar area offering a first class service to all.
The club has a membership of 970
including lady members.   A chat with president Rupert Allen and secretary Geoffrey Harrison revealed that the club’s balance sheet was in good shape.
Stewards Ron and Tina Edgerton were being kept busy supplying refreshments to 120 retired members who after a tasty meal were given a new fifty pence piece and a tot of rum to warm them up prior to clubland entertainment on the night which included backing music from resident organist Bob Marshall.  The man responsible for engaging entertainers is Jack Richardson concert secretary.

Another report in the same paper describes a visit by the same man along with the promotions manager of the Batley Variety Club in order to judge the Easter Bonnet contest.  Describing the bonnets as a credit to the imagination of the contestants.   The winners were:- Florrie, Rita and Joan. 
Information supplied by Jennifer Borley (Harrison).

In the 1940’s and 50’s I seem to remember there was a waiting list for membership.  If you wanted to get in at the week-end then make sure you weren’t late to see the latest cabaret in clubland.   The club has been the backbone of so much activity and social intercourse in this village and deserves a better fate than ignominious closure.

Can’t blame the current officials,  they have struggled hard for some years now but against the tide of other attractions and competition for drinks from supermarkets like so many other licensed premises in this country they are having to consider the future.  It’s really down to the villagers if you don’t want to lose it – then use it.

They’re fighting back.   A statement in the Methley Messenger reports that the club is still open for business and will carry on as usual until the new building is completed.   The article advertises all the forthcoming events including regular weekly functions.  Lets wish them every success.

May 2013  Well its open, and furnished to a very high standard with surprisingly more room than is indicated from the outside.   A short visit to taste what’s on sale indicated all Ok.    However closing at 10pm on certain days was quite a surprise to learn – mind, this could be a sensible application to other licensed premises with earlier opening hours, especially covering evening meal times which could tend to be more popular these days.

If you would like to register your support against the loss of pubs and clubs then go to this website :-                 We are losing pubs at the rate 6 per day all going back to the Monopolies & Mergers commission on the industry in 1989 – its time some of that idiotic legislation was repealed and let the brewers run the pubs and not the new marketing pub groups.   Can we also see advantageous taxation on barrelage to enable the pubs to compete with the supermarkets – mind, they are taking over everything.

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