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The Eccentric Club (UK)

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The Eccentric Club’s Daring Comeback

The Eccentric Club, once an important institution in the British society, closed down in the mid-1980s, is about to make a daring comeback to the London clubland on 29th of August - this time not in Mayfair, but in Bloomsbury.

London, United Kingdom, August 25, 2008 --( The Eccentric Club, once an important institution in the British society, which fell victim to a careless gamble with property developers in the 1980s, lost its premises in Mayfair and was closed down, is to make a daring comeback to the London clubland on 29th of August – this time not in Mayfair, but in Bloomsbury, in the premises of Pushkin House, the Russian cultural centre, named after Alexander Pushkin, Russia’s most celebrated and most eccentric 19th century poet.

“The Club’s name is a long established and reputable brand, its famous members of the past were those who had shaped the British culture into what it is now, its history is inseparable with that of Britain itself”, say the organisers.

On the 29th of August they intend to re-launch The Eccentric Club (UK) officially, in a traditional eccentric and entertaining style, with the music performances, a witty jazz cabaret, speeches by Henry Hemming, the author of recently published “In Search of the English Eccentric” and Lyndon Yorke (a mechanical follyologist voted 'Britain's Most Eccentric Person' in 2002), and more entertainment in various shapes. Equally entertaining promises to be the socialising with the meticulously selected guests from the artistic, scientific, literary, legal and business circles.

Traditionally believed to have been founded in 1890 by Jack Harrison, a theatrical costumier from Shaftesbury Avenue, the new Eccentric Club may actually become a century older due to the claims of its organisers to have proofs of the Club’s existence in the 1780s.

You may of course be wondering what is meant by ‘being eccentric’ these days, after all it has been unfortunately misinterpreted over the years. The new founders have redefined its meaning to "British eccentricity is a reluctance to be bound by social, spiritual, scientific, political, esthetical or any other limitations and an everlasting desire to explore every manifestation of life around us for the benefit of gaining personal experience and translating it through various mediums such as art, business, science, social events to the others, to the society and, in particular, other individuals which are seeking new knowledge and experience and are ready to perceive it...".

The previous Eccentric Club, started in 1890 by Jack Harrison, from its humble beginnings in Shaftesbury Avenue rose to become one of the most influential artistic and business establishments in Britain as well as one of its most generous charities.

During both World Wars, members of the Eccentric entertained the troops on the frontline, raised in total over £100,000 for wounded soldiers, visited them in hospitals and distributed food, tobacco, cigarettes and pipes, built numerous hospitals, hostels and orphanages. On average, since the 1920s the Club was spending over £1,000 a year on various charitable needs.

The new Club organisers pledge to honour the charitable traditions of its predecessors. They believe that today, in the times of common globalisation, it is essentially important to support local, national and European charities which far too often remain undervalued and underfunded whilst the larger international organisations' needs seem to be more of a priority.

The new Eccentric Club started just over a year ago with an eccentric idea of its restoration and a website appealing to any possible supporters of such an initiative. The response was truly overwhelming and beyond any expectations.

Restoration of The Eccentric Club in the 21st century is an amazing challenge and everyone involved feel most excited about the journey ahead of them. The organisers believe they are closer to the original founders of the Club than those who have inherited it and lost it. Starting the Club from the very beginning – finding the patrons, acquiring the right members, raising funds, organising events, establishing own clubhouse – requires a lot of energy and aspiration. But a prospect of running one of the most fascinating clubs in the British history fuels this ambitious beginning.

The Eccentric Club restoration was welcomed by many celebrated and distinguished individuals.

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The Eccentric Club (UK)
Imants v.Wenden

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