A Toc H Timeline

I originally put this together for Toc H Belgium as part of the Centenary celebrations in December 2015. Parts of it appeared in a huge display in the Slessorium that week. I thought it was worthwhile reproducing it here. I have decided against illustrating it as I see it as a simple reference tool rather than an enlightening article. Anyway, I’m knee-deep in another research project for my next Toc H post.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the dates used in this timeline are accurate. However it should be noted that Tubby was never one to let facts get in the way of a good story so there have been certain discrepancies over the years which may be reflected in this timeline.

A good example of this confusion is that of the opening of Talbot House and the subsequent birthday celebrations. In the early years the date of 15th December was given as the official opening. Thus in 1921 and for a few years after, the birthday party was held on or adjacent to December 15th. Sometime after his mother’s death Tubby discovered amongst her papers, the letters he had sent her from Flanders. These were edited by Barclay Baron and published in the Journal before being published as a book. A letter written on 6th December shows that the house in fact opened with a concert on Saturday 11th December 1915 and the first Communion was held in the Chapel (Still the landing on the second floor) the next day.

Early logo


Dec 1918 The Whizz Bang
Just before Talbot House closes its doors, Tubby sends out a Christmas card to those who took Communion in the House and whose addresses survive. It contains an army style field postcard that Tubby calls a Whizz-bang in which he asks men to commit to buy a planned booklet (What will eventually be Tales of Talbot House). This Whizz-bang is the first indication that the spirit of Talbot House is to be maintained in peacetime.

Dec 1918 Tubby sent to Le Touquet
Tubby and a pile of furniture and fittings from Talbot House move to the newly established ex-Service Candidates Ordination Test school at Le Touquet

Jan 1919 Tubby called to War Office
Tubby asked to find suitable premises to move the Test School to England

Mar 1919 The Test School opens in Knutsford prison
On the 26th March the school for ordinands opens in the old prison at Knutsford

Apr 1919 Tubby in London
Whilst the Test School take an Easter break, Tubby borrows some flats in Red Lion Square (where his sister has been living). It becomes a recruiting station for Toc H where many friends visit. Lieutenant E.G. White acts as secretary when Tubby returns to Knutsford.

Sep 1919 Tales of Talbot House published

Nov 1919 First Committee meeting of Toc H
On the Saturday (15th) after the first anniversary of the Armistice, at the RAC in Pall Mall, a committee was convened. They passed a resolution to reconstitute Talbot House at the earliest possible moment. The first plan was for it to be sited on Trafalgar Square. To avoid confusion with the Talbot House Settlement in Camberwell, it was decided to use the soldier’s slang of Toc H for the movement. An Executive Committee is formed

Nov 1919 Executive Committee meeting
The Executive meet for the first time on 19th November, at the offices of solicitor Montague Ellis at 17 Albemarle Street. Reggie May is chairman, a position he will retain for the next 10 years. The Executive meet three more times before Christmas and on 23rd December No 8 Queen’s Gate Place, formerly occupied by the wartime Anglo-South American Committee was being considered as Club premises

Feb 1920 Tubby issues circular
On the 26th February a letter from Tubby and a set of rules are sent out to the growing band of members

Mar 1920 Mark I opens
The property at 8 Queen’s Gate Place, Kensington is leased and opened as Talbot House Mark 1, a hostel for men who find themselves in London and need somewhere to stay. The stewards were Sam Pickles and his wife.

May 1920 Mark I moves
After just a few weeks Mark 1 moves to bigger rented property just a few hundred yards away at 23 Queen’s Gate Gardens where it will remain for the next eight years. Colonel Herbert Shiner becomes the first Warden of a Toc H Mark and remains in position until Lancelot Prideaux-Brune takes over on 6 May 1921.

June 1920 Tubby reaches out
Tubby sends a letter to selected Talbotousians outside of London asking them to gather men together

Summer 1920 The Four Points Of The Compass
Tubby draws up the original Four Points based on Alec Patterson’s Four Rules of Life

July 1920 Foundations in place
A list is produced showing 50 UK groups and 20 overseas

Sep 1920 Mark II opens in Pimlico
The Duke of Westminster (Hugh Grosvenor) allows Toc H to use his property at 123 St George’s Square in memory of his mother Lady Sibell. Toc H headquarters would be based here until 1926. Father Wimbush was its first Warden.

Sep 1920 First Official Football Game
The Toc H Football team play their first game beating a team from the Brigade of Guards HQ on 25th September

Nov 1920 First provincial group formed at Cheltenham
To date, gatherings of Toc H men had tended to happen in London at the Marks but on 22nd November the first provincial group meet for the first time in Cheltenham

Dec 1920 The Christmas Spirit published
Toc H put out The Christmas Spirit, the first Christmas Annual of Toc H, a miscellany of short stories and Toc H related material. It includes a list of secretaries covering 65 towns and cities in Great Britain and nine countries abroad. HQ is listed as Effingham House which is the editorial office of The Challenge, a church newspaper that Tubby contributes to.

Dec 1920 Punch notice
The issue of Punch or the London Charivari published on 22nd December includes a notice explaining the purpose and aims of Toc H. The editor, Owen Seaman, is a great friend to the early organisation.

Also in 1920 Toc H in Canada
George Goodwin and Tony Grant start Canadian Toc H in Montreal. The group would move slowly forward until Tubby’s tour of 1922 when they would get a boost. They achieved branch status in 1923

Feb 1921 Group matters
A memo from Cheltenham group makes two significant suggestions for Toc H. The first is that Service becomes a key element of Toc H’s purpose alongside the Friendship ideal that was an extension of the Old House. The second suggestion was that some form of Remembrance be part of a branch evening. The seed for the Ceremony of Light was sown.

May 1921 The first Toc H News Sheet
A four page news sheet is issued

May 1921 Mark III opens in Waterloo
This Mark was at 148 York Road and was demolished when County Hall was expanded

Jun 1921 Toc H merges with Cavendish Society
This merger brought Barclay Baron and others into the organisation and started a Toc H schools section

Dec 1921 First Birthday Party
Toc H celebrates its first birthday (also the sixth anniversary of the original house opening) at St Martin’s Crypt and Grosvenor House on 15th December. The Round Robin is signed.

Also in 1921 Sports ground opens
Toc H open a sports ground on a field at Folly Farm, Barnet

Jan 1922 First World Tour
On 6th January Tubby sails to Canada from Liverpool on the Empress of Britain. This is Tubby’s first post-war trip abroad and the start of many tours to promote Toc H in the Dominion and elsewhere

Feb 1922 First Canadian branch
Winnipeg are the first Canadian group to be awarded full branch status

Apr 1922 First Provincial Mark
The first Mark outside of London, Gartness in Manchester is opened. it is run by Pat Leonard

Apr 1922 First Council meeting
The Central Council meet for the first time

May 1922 The Lamp of Maintenance
Whilst buttering up a wealthy stockbroker, Tubby tells Barclay Baron that it is a shame the movement has no emblem. Baron suggests a lamp such as those used by early Christians in the catacombs under Rome. Soon a wooden model is created and the lamp takes its place in Toc H

Jun 1922 The Journal launched
The Toc H News Sheet becomes The Journal. It is edited initially by Lionel Bradgate

Jul 1922 Dawn of the League of Women Helpers
Inspired by the Women’s Auxiliary of the Church of Canada encountered on his recent trip, Tubby calls some key people for a meeting in Mrs Edmund Horne’s drawing room on 4th July with a view to creating a women’s auxiliary for Toc H. The new organisation will be led by Alison MacFie, a nurse in Flanders who visited Talbot House during the war and is thus one of the few female Foundation Members.

Jul 1922 The Executive Committee petitions for a Royal Charter
As an association Toc H is unable to own property or employ people in its own name. One of the ways an association can become incorporated is by Royal Charter which is granted through the Privy Council

Jul 1922 Birth of the LWH
The Executive approves a resolution by the London Club Committee to proceed with the formation of a Toc H League of Women Helpers. However it rejects the part of the resolution that would recognise the League in the new Royal Charter.

Nov 1922 Peter Monie becomes Honorary Administrator
Peter Monie was a British administrator in the Indian Civil Service. On his retirement he became the first Administrator of Toc H freeing Tubby up to take over All Hallows. He is known as the architect of Toc H for the way he shaped the organisation.

Dec 1922 Royal Charter granted
The Royal Charter is officially granted by the Privy Council on 6th December thusToc H is incorporated. The Girl Guides receive their Royal Charter on the same day!

Dec 1922 Tubby appointed Vicar of All Hallows
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Randall Davidson approached Tubby in the summer of 1922 and asked him to take over as Vicar of All Hallows. Initially Tubby was against the idea as he saw Toc H as his life’s work but the Archbishop and Tubby’s own Executive convinced him that it could be the centre of Toc H not a distraction. Peter Monie was to take up some of Tubby’s burden within the movement. Much admin was carried out from the porch room at All Hallows.

Dec 1922 Second Birthday Party
The 7th Anniversary of Talbot House and second birthday party of Toc H at Guildhall celebration includes the first lamp-lighting Ceremony by the Prince of Wales. The party starts on Friday 15th and continues to Sunday 17th

Apr 1923 The Main Resolution passed
Central Council pass the main resolution:

May 1923 Toc H & the Scouts
Toc H becomes a Kindred Society of the Boy Scout Movement and many branches set up Rover Crews to train up future Scoutmasters and assistants. Tubby and Baden-Powell are good friends

Nov 1923 First overseas Mark
The first overseas Mark opens in Winnipeg, Canada

Dec 1923 Toc H in Australia
Lord Forster, the Governor General of Australia, wrote to Tubby saying that he would like to endow a Toc H Lamp of Maintenance in memory of his two sons killed in World War 1. He said he wished to get Toc H started in Australia

Aug 1924 Toc H Western Australia
Padre Hayes arrives in Fremantle to help establish Toc H in Western Australia

Dec 1924 The Forster Lamp
The Forster Lamp, the parent lamp of Australia was lit by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales at a Toc H Festival in London.

Also in 1924
First hostel for women opens
New June is opened on Tower Hill by the LWH. It stood at 50 Great Tower Street (now covered by the Tower Place shopping centre). Tubby’s sister Belle was one of the residents

Toc H Rugby Club
Members of the Manchester Mark formed a rugby club which they called Toc H Manchester. After moving to various sites the club arrived in Didsbury and in 1986 the name was changed to Didsbury Toc H. It is still active today

Derby Camp for Boys
Originally set up as a local branch of Toc H, the Derby Toc H Camp for Poor Boys began in 1924 and continued until 1940. The Camp reformed in 1948 with the word Poor dropped from its name. It became a separate charity in 1952 and is still running. Similar camps were run throughout the UK and elsewhere

Feb 1925 First Staff Conference
The first staff conference is held at Stratford-on-Avon

Feb 1925 Tubby’s Tours
On the 6th February Tubby and Pat Leonard sail from Southampton to New York on the Antonia on the first leg of their world tour

Feb 1925 First group in South Africa
A telegram from Bert Oldfield announces that a group has been set up in Keiskama Hoek. Bert was housemaster at the mission school and started the group on 24th February with ‘Uncle Harry’ Ellison

Jun 1925 Down Under
After passing through New Zealand and helping birth groups in Wellington and Christchurch, Tubby and Pat arrive in Australia on 16th June

Sep 1925 Australian Council
An Australian Toc H council is formed and meets for the first time in Melbourne

Dec 1925 Toc H starts in Ceylon
Toc H gets underway in Colombo and Kandy as Tubby and Pat journey through

Dec 1925 Toc H Victoria
Toc H Victoria (Australia) is incorporated with its own constitution

Feb 1926 Headquarters moves
Toc H HQ moves to No.1 Queen Anne’s Gate on 20th February

Apr 1926 Toc H Australia formalised
On April 28th an Interstate Conference in Melbourne is held with the objective of forming a Toc H organisation of Australia

Jun 1926 Tubby meets Lord Wakefield
Tubby meets Sir Charles Wakefield at a service in London commemorating some of those who had fallen on the Somme. Tubby found a fellow philanthropist and Londonphile who could add considerable political clout and cash to his dreams. As well as what he did for Toc H, Wakefield and Tubby drove the work of the Tower Hill Improvement Trust (Now known as the Tower Hill Trust)

Sep 1926 The Forster Lamp relit in Australia
Australia’s parent lamp – The Forster Lamp – is lit at Christchurch Cathedral, Newcastle, New South Wales on 29th September.

Oct 1926 Launch of The Mark
South America’s journal, The Mark is first published

Dec 1926 The Lamp of India
The Lamp of India is lit for the first time in Calcutta Cathedral

Also in 1926
First group in Belgium

A Toc H group is set up in Ieper

The Log first published
The Log is the newsletter of the LWH

The Link is first published
Toc H’s Australian newsletter is first published

May 1927 Mark I on the move
Mark I, recently homeless, finds itself a new address at 24 Pembridge Gardens, Notting Hill where it will see out its days

Also in 1927
A South African Mark

Toc H South Africa opened its first house, in Johannesburg, known as Mark I (Transvaal)

Feb 1928 Tubby speaks at Parliament
Tubby and Barclay Baron speak at parliament on 29th February leading to formation of House of Commons Toc H group

Mar 1928 First house in India
A Toc H House opens in Calcutta

Dec 1928 First Lamplighting Festival for League of Women Helpers
22 lamps lit by Duchess of York at Christs’ Hospital Hall in Great Tower Street. Only one was a Lamp of Magnificat; 21 were hurricane lamps from a hardware shop opposite All Hallows due to an accident

Dec 1928 Birthday Festival
One of the special guests at this year’s festival is Madame Van Steene better known to soldiers as Ginger

Dec 1928 First Indian Conference

May 1929 First World Chain of Light
The first World Chain of Light, organised by Toc H Australia, takes place. It starts at the Federal Festival in Perth on the 14th May.

Dec 1929 Birthday Festival
The Prince of Wales announces that Sir Charles (later Lord) Wakefield, of Castrol Oil wealth, has bought Talbot House and given it to Toc H.

Spring 1930 Headquarters moves
Headquarters moves to the former Guards’ Industrial Home for Girls at 47 Francis Street.

Apr 1930 Talbot House Association founded
The Association de Talbot House de Poperinghe is formed with Paul Slessor as its chairman. This is the legal body that will own Talbot House under Belgian Law. It is now known as the Talbot House Association

Dec 1930 Tubby moves into his vicarage
42 Trinity Square was bought by Charlotte Tetley – the wife of self-made industrialist Henry Tetley – in 1928 for use by the clergy of All Hallows but Tubby didn’t move in until 1930

Apr 1931 Talbot House reopened
After being bought by Lord Wakefield in 1929 the Old House is given to the Talbot House Association on 27 Oct 1930. Wakefield officially opens it on Easter Sunday – 5th April 1931

Mar 1933 Toc H and leprosy
Whilst touring West Africa, Tubby comes face to face with leprosy. He immediately strikes up a relationship with the British Empire Leprosy Relief Association and sends Toc H men to Africa to help. BELRA later becomes LEPRA

Also in 1933 Warden Manor donated
Warden Manor on the Isle of Sheppey is made available to Toc H as a holiday hostel by the business man Cecil Jackson Cole. Cole was a Toc H member and for a while a Central Councillor. He later co-founded Oxfam and founded Help The Aged and other charities. Warden Manor was sold by Coles in 1978 with the proceeds going to a special trust administered by Toc H.

Jan 1934 Death of Edward Stuart Talbot
Known as the father of Toc H, Bishop Talbot was the father of Talbot House co-founder Neville Talbot and Gilbert Talbot for whom it was named.

Jul 1934 Children’s Beach reopened
This sandy stretch by the Thames in the shadow of Tower Bridge was one of the achievements of Tubby through the Tower Hill Improvement Trust

Feb 1935 Hubert Secretan becomes Honorary Administrator
Hubert Secretan, a former Warden at the Oxford and Bermondsey Boys Club, replaces Peter Monie as Honorary Administrator of Toc H.

Jun 1936 Coming of Age
A massive Coming of Age festival is held in London to celebrate 21 years of Toc H

Jan 1937 New HQ for the League of Women Helpers
The LWH HQ moves from New June to 18 Byward street, an ‘ugly little building’ on the pavement outside the north wall of All Hallows and a cover over an extra exit for Mark Lane was purchased by the Wakefield Trust so it could be demolished. The Luftwaffe began the job which the Trust later completed.

Nov 1938 LWH move again
The LWH move to Crutched Friars House, 42 Crutched Friars. It was given to the Wakefield Trust by Charlotte Tetley for the use of LWH.

1939 Service Clubs
With the advent of war, Toc H moves its focus to Servicemen (and Women’s) Clubs both in the UK and in the theatres of war. During the course of the war Toc H will run 400 Service Clubs, 1800 Mobile canteens and employ 358,000 workers. Their work is coordinated with other organisations like the YMCA by the newly formed Council of Voluntary Welfare Work.

May 1940 Poperinge over-run
Talbot House falls into German hands. Back home it is believed Talbot House is destroyed and that is what Toc H members believe until Poperinge is liberated.

May 1940 Prisoners of War
Toc H staff Rex Calkin, Reg Staton, Lt-Col. Brian Bonham Carter, Hugh Pilcher and Padre Austen Williams serving with the BEF in France, are taken prisoner of war.

Dec 1940 All Hallows destroyed
The church on Tower Hill is struck by a high explosive bomb on the night of the 8th/9th December and then on 29 December it is hit by incendiary bombs which burn it to a shell

Apr 1943 Death of Neville Talbot
On the 3rd April, Neville Talbot, the tall padre who established Talbot House alongside Tubby dies. It was for Neville’s brother Gilbert, Talbot House was named

Also in 1943
LWH becomes Toc H (Women’s Section)

In recognition of its much changed role during wartime, the domestic sounding League of Women Helpers becomes Toc H (Women’s Section)

Sep 1944 Polish Troops liberate Poperinge
On 6th September Polish troops drive the Germans out of Poperinge. Their departure was so fast an uneaten meal lay on the tables. The many artefacts of Talbot House, spirited away by local people in 1940 are taken from their hiding places and restored to the Old House

1945 Post War Work
After the war the Services work continues overseas (especially clubs with the British Army On the Rhine)) whilst the branches go back to community service. An expected surge in numbers from servicemen who had come into contact with Toc H during the war, doesn’t happen

Jan 1947 Harold Howe becomes Honorary Administrator
Howe was formerly the headmaster at Keswick Hall School. He will be ordained in 1953

July 1948 Foundation stone laid at All Hallows
Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth, lays the foundation stone as All Hallows begins to be rebuilt.

Also in 1948
Winant Volunteer programme launched

This programme was named for Tubby’s friend and US Ambassador to the UK, John Gilbert Winant. Young Americans were brought to the UK to work in the community in projects organised by Toc H. Later a second programme would send UK students to America. Winant committed suicide in 1947. The Winant Clayton Volunteers are still going as a separate charity.

Sep 1949 Death of Paul Slessor
Major Paul Slessor died in Rottingdean, Sussex at the age of 78. He did much to ensure that Talbot House came to Toc H and the washhouse in the garden was named for him.

Dec 1950 TB Settlement at Botha’s Hill founded
Toc H establishes a TB settlement at Botha’s Hill, Natal, South Africa to combat the disease that ravages the African people. It soon becomes a village known in Zulu as Entembi (A Place of hope). It was founded by Don Mackenzie of Pinetown branch and the South African writer Alan Paton worked there for a year.

Mar 1952 Toc H (Women’s Section) becomes Toc H Women’s Association

Apr 1952 Ranald MacDonald becomes Honorary Administrator

Apr 1953 Barclay Baron becomes temporary Administrator
Ranald MacDonald is asked to stand down and Barclay Baron fills in until a new Administrator is found

Jan 54 John Callf becomes Administrator
John Callf becomes the new Administrator of Toc H. Callf was formerly Toc H Commissioner in India

Jun 1954 Death of the General
Tubby’s former batman and old friend, Arthur Pettifer dies aged 80 on 16th June

Jul 1957 All Hallows reborn
On 23rd July the rebuilt All Hallows is dedicated by the Bishop of London

Feb 1958 This Is Your Life
Tubby is the subject of a live This Is Your Life on 3rd February Guests include Leonard Browne, Alison MacFie, Inky Bean and the Rev. Ronnie Royle

Also in 1958
Dor Knap becomes training centre

Dor Knap in Broadway, Worcestershire was first acquired as a training centre by Toc H in 1958, needing ‘sympathetic modernisation’. This led to an upsurge of enthusiasm that made it a place of tranquillity, engendering caring practical leadership

Oct 1960 15 Trinity Square is new HQ
15 Trinity Square on Tower Hill has been purchased through a special fund and will be Toc H’s UK HQ for the next 12 years

Jun 1962 Rex Calkin retires as General Secretary
After 31 years, including a spell as a Prisoner of War, Rex Calkin steps down as General Secretary of Toc H and is replaced by Cyril Cattell

Nov 1962 Tubby announces resignation as Vicar of All Hallows

Jul 1963 Death of Pat Leonard
Tubby’s long standing friend, lately Bishop of Thetford, Pat Leonard dies in Middlesex Hospital on 21st July

Sep 1963 Death of Alison MacFie
Just two months after losing his great friend Pat Leonard, Tubby must grieve the loss of foundation member and founder of the LWH, Alison MacFie

Also in 1963
George Davis becomes Administrator

Apr 1964 Death of Barclay Baron
For the third time in less than a year, Tubby has to bear the death of close friend. This time it is Barclay Baron who dies

Jun 1965 Toc H Straat opens
A new street in Poperinge is named for Toc H. Tubby receives the Freedom of Poperinge

May 1966 Queen visits Talbot House
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visits Talbot House

Dec 1967 Desert Island Discs
Tubby is the guest on the radio show Desert Island Discs on 4th December. His choices include Alvar Lidell & Gerald Moore’s Drink to Me Only with Thine Eyes, Peter Jackson’s Waltzing Matilda and Peter Sellers’ My Old Dutch

Also in 1967
Alison House acquired

A house, formerly owned by the Arkwrights, in Cromford, Derbyshire is bought by Toc H as a training centre. It is named for Alison MacFie, founder of the LWH.

Point 3
The Journal and the Log merge to become Point 3 and Ken Prideaux-Brune is appointed editor

Jul 1969 Sandy Giles becomes Director (Formerly Administrator)
Sir Alexander (Sandy) Giles is appointed Director (replacing the position of Administrator). He assumed the role of Director Designate from 12 Feb 1969

Also in 1969
Colsterdale opens

A dilapidated Yorkshire farmhouse near Ripon has undergone a transformation and opens up as a Northern Dor Knap for training and projects. It was opened by the Countess of Swindon

June 1971 Royal Charter Amended
Most significantly, Toc H and the Toc H Women’s Association become integrated officially although it will be several years for all the branches to become joint men and women’s

Apr 1972 Toc H HQ Sold
Toc H’s prestigious HQ at 15 Trinity Square is sold for over £2m giving an incredible boost to the Movements funds. HQ leaves London for the first time for Wendover in Buckinghamshire

Dec 1972 Tubby Clayton dies
On 16th December, just 4 days after his 87th birthday, Phillip Thomas Byard Clayton, known to most as Tubby, dies

Dec 1972 Tubby’s funeral
Tubby’s funeral took place at All Hallows on 21st December. The service was conducted by the Rev. Colin Cuttell and Yeoman Warders from the Tower acted as Pall Bearers.

1973 Number 7 Opens
Number 7 The Crescent just behind Talbot House on Trinity Square, owned by the Wakefield Trust and formerly a Merchant Naval Hostel called Seamark, is taken over – rent free – by Toc H. It is to be run as a hostel for young Bangladeshi men recently arrived in this country. It not only provided accommodation for some 20 young men; it became a centre for the whole community. Some of the first Bengali community organisations were founded at Number Seven and Peter East’s work there bred a generation of leaders.

June 1974 Colsterdale holds its first Open Day
Founded by the Rev Bob Purdy it was donated at a peppercorn rent by the Earl of Swinton

July 1974 The birth of Friendship Circles
North Tees hospital ask Ann Crouch, a Voluntary Help Organiser, to consider volunteer run day centres to help patients rehabilitate. Ann developed the idea of mixing volunteers and patients as peers in a Friendship Circle. These groups became an important expression of Toc H’s work for the next 30 years

Also in 1974
Ken Prideaux-Brune becomes Director

The appointed is ratified by the Central Executive Committee on 25 October 1974

May 1975 Diamond Jubilee
Toc H celebrates 60 years with a Festival in London and exhibitions around the country

1977 Port Penrhyn opens
Toc H’s new activity centre is opened by Her Majesty the Queen after six years of redevelopment work.

29 Mar 1980 Cuddesdon House formerly opened
A property near Oxford, Cuddesdon House, is acquired as the new Toc H training centre to replace Dor Knap. It is formerly opened by the Bishop of Oxford, the Right Reverend Patrick Rodger, on 29th March.

Dec 1981 Poacher’s Den opens
A former Wesleyan Chapel, bought as a branch room for West Pinchbeck Men’s branch in 1958, is converted into a Toc H Centre where projects can be based.

Apr 1982 Seafarers’ Club closes
The Talbot House Young Seafarers’ Club in Southampton finally closes its doors after nearly 60 years

1986 John Mitchell becomes Director

Nov 1993 Mike Lydiard becomes Director

Mar 1999 Ken Prideaux-Brune becomes acting Director
Following Mike Lydiard’s sudden death whilst at Talbot House

Mar 2000 Geoff Smith becomes Director

Jul 2000 Royal Charter Amended
On 16th July the Royal Charter is amended further

Feb 2007 Mary Rance becomes Chief Executive

Compiled by Steve Smith with additional info by Marolyn and John Burgess. With grateful thanks to Barkis.


2 thoughts on “A Toc H Timeline

  1. The vicarage at Trinity Square was, for a brief time, YHA’s first youth hostel in London. The YHA archivist has made the following note: LONDON [Trinity Square] 1931 only. New Talbot House, 42 Trinity Square, London EC3. Opened and closed 1931. Limited facilities, for men only. Between 5/1931 and 9/1931 (eg) there were 33 bednights [LONar31].


  2. Wow Duncan, I never knew that. Funnily enough the fledgling CSV also camped out with Toc H on Tower Hill (15 Trinity Square) when they started out in the sixties. Very accommodating Toc H! We must talk some more when I start on the full-blown biography.


Leave a Reply to duncanmsimpson Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s