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London Metropolitan Archives



Reference code(s): GB 0074 LMA/4609

Held at: London Metropolitan Archives


Date(s): 1832-2008

Level of description: collection

Extent: 14 linear metres

Name of creator(s): Carlton Club | members' club


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Carlton Club was founded in 1832 by members of the Tory Party as a political organisation. Having lost the General Election in 1831, the Tories decided to meet regularly at a house in Charles Street, Westminster to deliberate on the issue of reorganising the party. Within a few months, it was agreed that a club affiliated to the Tory Party should be set up. On 10th March 1832, the Marquis of Salisbury chaired a meeting at the Thatched House Tavern, Saint James's Street in which a committee of Tory peers and members of parliament were appointed to draw up the rules for a new club. By the end of March, the Carlton Club was established and 500 people agreed to be members.

Until the end of 1835, the club was located at Lord Kensington's House at 2 Carlton House Terrace, Westminster. Seeking larger premises, the club moved to 94 Pall Mall, a building designed by Robert Smirke and erected between 1833 and 1836. The new clubhouse was enlarged in 1846-1848 and then completely rebuilt by Sydney Smirke in 1856. Between 1923 and 1924, the Caen stone fašade to the building was replaced to the designs of Sir Reginald Blomfield. On the 14th October 1940, 94 Pall Mall was destroyed by a bomb and Carlton Club moved to Arthur's Club's old premises at 69 Saint James's Street where it still remains.

Since its foundation, only individuals who support the Conservative Party have been eligible for membership. Applicants must be proposed and seconded by two existing members and their names entered into a candidate's book. After two months, a decision is made by the General Committee as to whether they should be elected. Until 2008, only men could become full members, although from the 1970s women were admitted as associated members. On 22nd May 2008, the club changed its membership rules giving the same rights to both male and female members.

The Carlton Club remains the Conservative Club, with leaders of the party always invited to become honorary members. The club offers many facilities to members, including overnight accommodation and the ability to visit many reciprocal clubs around the world. The club also hosts numerous political lunches, dinners and meetings.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of Carlton Club, 1832 - 2008, including minutes of the general committee, house committee, finance committee, building committee, management committee, political committee, library committee, wine and cigar committee, golf committee, ad hoc committee and marketing committee; annual general meeting minutes; papers and correspondence relating to administrative issues; candidates books; members' lists; registers of weights; 'round table' records; staff wages books; annual accounts; ledgers; journals; cash books; account books; bedroom books; dinner books; wine stock books; library accession registers and catalogues; lists of books proposed for the library; inventory and valuation for 69 Saint James' Street; and book published by the political committee.

Records of Junior Carlton Club, 1864 - 1977, including minutes of the general committee, house and finance committee, building committee, political committee, library committee, wine and cigar committee, squash racket and swimming baths committee; annual general meeting minutes; papers and correspondence relating to administrative issues; original applications to the club; candidates book; registers of life members and home supernumerary members; members' complaints and suggestions; journals; cash books; weekly account books; registers of subscriptions; deeds, papers, correspondence and plans relating to 30 and 94 Pall Mall; photographs of 30 Pall Mall; and Empire Day scrapbook.

Records of Carlton Club (London) Limited, 1956 - 1987, including minutes and share registers.

Records of the Carlton Trustees (London) Limited, 1956 - 1987, including minutes and share registers.


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

The records are arranged as follows:

LMA/4609/A - Administration;

LMA/4609/B - Members;

LMA/4609/C - Staff;

LMA/4609/D - Finance;

LMA/4609/E - Stock;

LMA/4609/F - Library;

LMA/4609/G - Property;

LMA/4609/H - Printed Material;

LMA/4609/I - Junior Carlton Club;

LMA/4609/J - Carlton Club (London) Limited;

LMA/4609/K - Carlton Trustees (London) Limited.

Conditions governing access:

Restricted access: please see staff

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright is held by the Depositor

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Detailed catalogue


Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Deposited in November 2011


DESCRIPTION NOTES Rules or conventions: Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: Added June 2013

Members' clubs | Clubs | Leisure time activities | Leisure
Political clubs | Clubs | Leisure time activities | Leisure

Personal names

Corporate names

Westminster | London | England | UK | Western Europe | Europe
City of Westminster