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Sheerness Conservative Club welcomes visitors as it celebrates 120th birthday

By Lewis Dyson

And anyone who wants to see what it's like beyond the doors at the top of its Broadway steps is being welcomed to take a peak inside.

An open-door policy has been in place for the last few months and will continue until the new year. During this time, anyone can come in and try out the facilities to see if they want to join.

The Sheerness Conservative Club is undergoing a renovation for it's 120th anniversary

The Sheerness Conservative Club is undergoing a renovation for it's 120th anniversary

Chairman Barry Packer said there were more than 500 members on the books but only about 150 regularly come in.

"People tend to think we're a closed shop," he said. "But that isn't the case. We want people to know that they are welcome to come in. They don't have to be a member, they are still invited. We are still a working club that has to make money to survive."

The club has a snooker room, with two professional quality, antique tables dating back to 1910, a kitchen, a lounge, two bars and a large function room upstairs which is free to hire for members. Anyone else can hire the hall for a £50 refundable deposit.

John Dewey (left), president of the Conservative Club, and Barry Packer (right) chairman of the club

John Dewey (left), president of the Conservative Club, and Barry Packer (right) chairman of the club

The grade II-listed building's front is undergoing a makeover which, together with some further sprucing up at the back of the property and a revamp of the kitchen, is estimated to cost between £16,000 and £18,000.

Mr Packer, who is a builder by trade and has helped with the renovations, said they had been able to keep costs down as a lot of the work being carried out in-house with some of the members stumping up the cash.

Colin Bastable, who co-runs entertainments and advertising at the club, said: "We want it to survive for another 120 years.

The Sheerness Conservative Club in 1916. Picture Colin Harvey

The Sheerness Conservative Club in 1916. Picture: Colin Harvey

"I grew up in Sheerness and one of my fondest early memories is my dad bringing me to the Conservative Club when I was a boy.

"I don’t want to see it go the way of a lot of buildings on Sheppey and turned into flats. It’s got so much character this building."

To find out more, call the club on 01795 662458.

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