Memories of St Joseph’s Social Club as new homes planned

Posted on - 2nd January, 2019 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Deepdale, History, Housing, Nostalgia, Preston News, Redevelopment, St Matthews
The former site of St Joseph's Social Club Pic Google
The former site of St Joseph’s Social Club Pic Google

More than 40 new affordable homes could be built on the former site of St Joseph’s Social Club.


A planning application has been submitted for the 44 new energy efficient homes north of Cemetery Road in the St Matthew’s area.

The development would comprise six three-bedroom houses, 31 two-bedroom houses and seven two-bedroom bungalows. A new access route would be created from Cemetery Road, and the houses would have private rear gardens.

Read more: Goosnargh homes from Community Gateway set for approval

The new homes would be managed by Chorley Community Homes, which is part of the Jigsaw Homes Group.

The planning application states the expectation is for “the majority of the new houses to be occupied by people who are in active employment but who cannot afford to purchase/rent market housing in Preston.”

The application goes on to say that the development will “contribute towards the ongoing vitality of this part of Preston by helping to provide new homes for people who could not otherwise rent or purchase new properties in this part of Preston.”

Memories of St Joseph’s Social Club

St Joseph’s Social Club, which previously occupied the site, holds many memories for Prestonians. We asked the Preston – Who Remembers… and Preston Past and Present Facebook groups for their recollections.

St Joseph's Social Club 1985 - pic Mick Gunson
St Joseph’s Social Club in 1985 Pic: Mick Gunson

Mick Gunson shared the photo above: “Our first gig at St Joseph’s Club in 1985. I’m in the red t-shirt, the guy in the white t-shirt playing guitar is Clifford V Johnson, now a renowned professor in the USA.”

Jim Lancaster: “My father, Jim Lancaster, was a member of St Joseph’s Club when it was in a room above the ‘Boys’ school. At that time, it had a small stage, a seating area near the bar that was above the stairs, and two full-size snooker tables. There was also seating round the walls.”

Glynis Kaminski: “My mum and dad used to be members and went there regularly on a Saturday night. I remember going there for the children’s Christmas party and my Holy Communion breakfast.”

Phil Ainsworth: “Whilst I was in the Cubs 1st Preston Bishops our parents demolished the old wooden hut, which was behind the youth club. We had a massive bonfire and firework display, had a problem with some of the rockets that had a flare which came down around the petrol station on Ribbleton Lane.”

Zita Bielby: “My mum once told us that when her and my dad were members there, Priscilla White, later known as Cilla Black sang in the club at the start of her career.”

Bernadette Omalley: “I remember my class having a party in the building behind the club after we made our first holy communion. 1959/60. We had jelly and ice cream and our mothers sat behind us having a cup of tea.”

Linzi Jane Holding: “From the mid 70s to late 90s family life revolved around this club and I have wonderful memories. Christmas parties, attending the youth club, Easter weekend activities, bowling presidents day competitions and the tea in the school, family celebrations (my 21st, mum’s 60th, parents silver wedding to name a few). Both my brother and I worked at the club as glass collectors, moving on to becoming bar staff. Our parents along with around another 15 couples from the club were known as the ‘heavy gang’.”

Maureen Yates: “I remember going to the club at Christmas time with my parents and aunts and uncle in the 60s. If I remember rightly they used to sing ‘Faith of our Fathers’ at the end of the evening.”

Amanda Carroll: “I remember learning line dancing there, and going to afternoon tea dances with my nan when I was off school in the 90s.”

St Joseph's Social Club in 1977 Pic: Dez Gunson
St Joseph’s Social Club in 1977 Pic: Dez Gunson

Julie Moss: “My grandad William Rawlinson, was Chairman of St Joseph’s Club in the early 1960s. I remember singing Away in a Manger with grandad holding the mic, at the Annual Christmas party for members children/grandchildren.”

Frank Cairns: “The building down the back before the club was built was where we had school dinners when we went to St Joseph’s school in the 50s.”

Sean Hindle: “Sunday lunch time was for men only and the bar was only opened after the 11.00 mass had finished. As an altar boy at 15 or 16 we would go across meet up with our dads. If you were lucky several half pints of Webster’s finest would be consumed by all of us home then for lunch and homework. Prayers would be said for any member who had passed away or who was sick.”

Jean Ball: “It was a great club, lovely people. Saturday nights with many friends, I used to look forward to in the early sixties. Hubby used to play football on the spare land in 1947 it was called the Cinder Pad St Joseph’s Hall was where they had dances and reunions and football and Boxing Training.”

Susan Hobson: “Saw the late great Sir Ken Dodd at Joseph’s social club. He was on for hours. A brilliant performance!”

Damian Baron: “Fantastic memories of late 50s/early 60s children’s Christmas parties there. Also remember my dad telling me that Father Rigby, when in his cups, would sing Irish Republican songs. Many priests from the presbytery would go there for a pint or three. I also recall the Scout/Cub hut behind the club. I was from St Joseph’s parish (Miller Rd) and we spent hours playing footy on the land behind the club.”

Rachel Lonsdale: “I was in the majorettes in the 80s, 90s, we used to practice our routine back of St Joseph’s club, and inside as well, great memories.”

What do you think of the planning application? Do you have any memories of St Joseph’s Social Club? Let us know in the comments below.

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