Making Good Men Better

Let us glance briefly at our natal year, 1937:

  • The first festive board of Charterhouse Lodge was held in the Little Park Street Masonic Hall Ball Room in Coventry (see the highlight image at the top of this page).
  • Whisky was then 12s 6d a bottle (62½ pence) and cigarettes 20 for a shilling. You could have six large bottles of nut brown ale delivered to your door for 2s 9d (14 pence).
  • A dining room suite was on offer for under £11 and an oak bedroom suite for 12 guineas.
  • Houses on the then new Cheylesmore estate ranged from £465 freehold (£25 deposit).
  • Half-day rail trips from Coventry to see the Blackpool Illuminations were advertised at 7s 6d. For 25 shillings (£1.25) you could go by coach, have tea on the way and stay for dinner, bed and breakfast, with another break for “tea” on the way back.
  • It was also the year of the £100 car, the Austin Opal two-seater. You could even get a Ford Popular chassis for £97 10s, although the complete saloon went a bit over the magic £100.
  • A balancing statistic: engineering craftsmen’s wages (without overtime) averaged, at this time, well under £3 per week.

Also that year, September saw a meeting in Germany between Hitler and Mussolini, the significance of which might not have been too well noted at the time; the Japanese were bombing Nanking in China; Sir Malcolm Campbell took the world water speed record in Bluebird at 129mph

Little Park Street Ballroom

And on Saturday 25th, while our Lodge was actually being consecrated, Coventry City F.C. played a draw with Nottingham Forest, at Highfield Road, to stay top of the Second Division. The attendance was over 24,000. At Coundon Road Coventry defeated Guy’s Hospital by 34 points to 6.

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