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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 LMA/4572
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Full title: BOODLE'S CLUB
Date(s): 1762-2009
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 3.75 linear metres.
Name of creator(s): Boodle's Club | members' club


Administrative/Biographical history:

Boodle's is a gentlemen's club founded in 1762 by Lord Shelburne (who later became Prime Minister) and other individuals who were opposed to many of the key government policies of the day. They met regularly at a tavern at 49-51 Pall Mall to discuss political issues and exchange ideas. The tavern was owned by the coffee house proprietor William Almack and the principal waiter was Edward Boodle. It is believed at some point Boodle took over the tavern and this is why the club became known as Boodle's.

In 1783, the club moved to 28 Saint James's Street, which was designed by John Crunden in 1775 and originally used by the Savoir Vivre Club. The ground floor was renovated by John Buonarotti Papworth between 1821 and 1834. It has a very fine interior including a beautiful eighteenth century saloon.

Until 1897, Boodle's was a proprietary club meaning it was run for the profit of the owner under the direction of a board of managers. Since 1897, Boodle's has been owned and run by the members.

In the early days, Boodle's was not only a political club but also a place for wining and dining, gaming and betting. In the nineteenth century, the club became less political. The club is now a place where members can meet, dine and engage in social activities.

Members have included David Hume; Adam Smith; Edward Gibbon; William Cavendish, 5th Duke of Devonshire; Charles Fox; Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington; William Wilberforce; Beau Brummell; Ian Fleming; David Niven; John Profumo and Julian Fellowes. Winston Churchill was an honorary member.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of Boodle's Club. The collection includes club books; registers of managers; rule books; minutes of the general committee, management committee, wine committee and debenture holders; papers and correspondence of the chairmen; signature books; candidates books; temporary honorary members books; registers of subscriptions; lists of members; bedroom reservation books; betting books; card books; minutes, accounts, papers and correspondence of masters of foxhounds committee; record of golfing society matches; papers relating to members' trips; papers relating to royal events; members' requirements books; weighing books; beverage stock books; sale particulars; papers relating to lease; plans, papers and photographs relating to building work; inventories and valuations; library catalogue, photographs of exterior and interior of 28 Saint James's Street; engraving plates and proofs for Christmas card designs; menus; invitations; guides

Please note that access to this collection is only by written consent of the depositor.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

These records are arranged as follows:

LMA/4572/A: Proprietary Club: Administration;
LMA/4572/B: Members' Club: Administration;
LMA/4572/C: Chairman;
LMA/4572/D: Members;
LMA/4572/E: Staff;
LMA/4572/F: Finance;
LMA/4572/G: Stock;
LMA/4572/H: Property;
LMA/4572/I: Ephemera, Photographs and Printed Material.

Conditions governing access:

Access by written permission only.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to this collection rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Records deposited in 2010 with one additional item gifted in 2015.

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also Brook's Club (ACC/2371), Army and Navy Club (LMA/4179) and Travellers' Club (LMA/4519).

Publication note:

For more information see Boodle's 1762-1962. A Short History by Roger Fulford, 1962 (42.6 BOO) and Boodle's Apocrypha: A Story of Men and Their Club in London by Stephen R. Hill, 2009 (42.6 HIL)

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

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:
Prepared May to September 2011, updated May 2015

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