TWYFORD HALL HISTORY

The building was constructed in 1853 as a Wesleyan Chapel and served as such until the end of WWI. During the turn of the century there was already a Twyford Men’s Club located in Twyford and when the Vicar Rev. R.W.H. Acworth arrived at the church in 1903, he had considerable impact on the club and as Club President he was instrumental in moving the club into the Weslyan Chapel. At this time the chapel had been empty for a few years when it was deserted by the Wesleyan congregation who had moved to Reading on the death of a previous vicar. As a result the Rev. Acworth bought the chapel, and rented it to the Men’s Club at the princely sum of £1 per month. The hall accommodated a full size billiard table, and a reading room which was provided with daily newspapers, and periodicals. Tea, coffee and other non-alcoholic drinks were available for a small charge. The hall was open six evenings a week from 7pm to 10pm and three times per week gymnastic exercise classes were held.

With the outbreak of WWI the men of Twyford were quick to respond to the call to arms. During the war 276 men enlisted from a total population of 1,200 (men women and children.) according to the 1911 census. Of these 34 young men made the ultimate sacrifice. One of the volunteers became known as the Ace of Twyford due to his record of 16 aerial victories being awarded the DFC and Bar. Another was lost presumed dead on a submarine; an unusual occurrence in those days.

In 1919 the Vicar Rev. Acworth was again active in supporting the men of Twyford by bequeathing the Chapel to the Men of Twyford in recognition of their contribution to the war effort.

THE HALL STILL RETAINS A COMMEMORATIVE TABLET LISTING EVERY NAME OF THOSE WHO SERVED KING AND COUNTRY

Since 1919 the building has served as a club dedicated to playing billiards and snooker and other social activities continued as before. Currently the club is rather unique in that members pay an annual fee which entitles them to their own key so that they have access 24/7. In addition it is now open to male and female members and is available to hire by local societies such as drama and musical groups for rehearsals and practice.

Graham C. Cook M.Sc. Trustee.

In the year 2019 we intend to celebrate the 100 years, since it was bequeathed, by having the hall rededicated by the local vicar and also re-named The Twyford Memorial Hall. This name would reflect the memorial contents of the hall; ie the commemorative tablet mentioned above plus an engraved porcelain tile which expresses thanks to God for the service by the men of Twyford.

If you are able to help with the refurbishment and rededication of The Twyford Memorial Hall please contact us at –

support@helpourhall.co.uk  www.helpourhall.co.uk

www.facebook.com/twyfordsnookerhall Twitter: @helpourhall

Or graham.cook125@btinternet.com Tel: 0118 969 1668 Mob: 07785738034