The Candlewick Ward Club

Church Of St Clement Eastcheap,

Clement's Lane

London, EC4N 7HB

 

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THE REVISED RULES

When the Club was re-formed in 1739 it consisted of twenty-seven members.  The revised Rules, which are written at the commencement of the first Minute Book and entitled “Orders, etc. for the government of Candlewick Ward Club”, are too long to print, but the chief points are these:

  • The Club to be called the “Candlewick Ward Club” – to be restricted to thirty-one members, all of whom shall, for the future³, be inhabitants of the ward – to meet every Wednesday evening, in the Winter from 6 to 9 o’clock and in the Summer from 7 to 10. – Every member to pay one shilling and a half-penny, if present, and threepence if absent; “Fourpence to be given to the drawer”  – A dinner or supper to be held quarterly – New members to be proposed and approved at one meeting, the choice to be affirmed at the next, and the election declared at the meeting after; at the election half the members must be present.  – Member chosen a Common Councilman to pay two bottles of wine. - If elected Deputy, four bottles; to which some years after was added the payment of a guinea if elected Sheriff, a guinea if elected Alderman and two guineas upon entering the Mayoralty.

  • Order II is so excellent in itself and show how determined the members were to repress ungentlemanly behaviour, that it may be quoted at length⁶:  “That every Member, Visitor and Stranger shall behave himself modestly, courteously and civilly in this Club.  And it is hereby declared to be a fundamental and unalterable resolution of this Club, that no impious, immoral or unmannerly conversation be ever tolerated therein”.  No wager to exceed two bottles of wine and all to be for the good of the Club.

  • The 15th Order regulates the Chair: “That the Rev. William Webster, D.D. or, in is absence, the Deputy of the Ward, or the Senior Common Councilman, or, in default of all and every of them, the senior member present, shall be Chairman for the evening” .

  • The 18th Order refers to the antiquity of the Club in the words “And whereas it has been the ancient custom of this Club” to settle all accounts before every Feast-day, the members are required to pay up all arrears, anyone continuing in default to ex expelled.

  • In 1760 a custom of the Club, which the cast account shows had met with general compliance, was entered upon the Orders.  Order 19th: “Resolved and ordered that every member that belongs to this Club, or shall hereafter belong thereto, being single, shall and do upon their entering into the holy state of matrimony pay one gallon of port wine”.

  • In 1774 it was agreed “That the Club should continue subject to its original Rules and Orders, excepting that instead of a Weekly Meeting, it should only be on the Second Wednesday in every Month, and that each Member should pay 12s for the whole year”.  This was followed by an accession of members, amongst whom was Alderman Wright.

  • In 1780 the annual subscription was raised to 15s.

  • In 1785 Mr Gill, a member, was elected Alderman of Walbrook Ward and, notwithstanding his numerous duties, maintained a regular attendance at the Club Meetings.  

  • In 1790 the Club Night was altered to the Second Thursday in each month at 8p.m.

  • In 1803 the subscription was raised to 17s 6d. with a 5s. extra for bachelors.  In 1809 the subscription was 20s., in 1869 was raised to £2. and in 1888 to “2 12s 6d per annum.