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Todus Van Night Club

Janet Chadband and Dennis Knight, 2013

Barbara – Interviewer: Do you remember there used to be a Nightclub in Church Hill.

Dennis: Todus Van.

Janet: That’s right but I never went.

Dennis: I did.

Barbara – Interviewer: That must have been tiny in there then.

Dennis: Oh it was a House. I tell you who owned the house was an American couple. Well she was American and he was English called Bowden and they had a Son called Rhys he was about 9 months older than me and they decided to have this club called the Todus Van club. You went in the hallway and in the next room they had a little Bar. Well they were very friendly with Lil and Roger Hook, Molly Hook’s (Slater) mother and father and they had Roger behind the Bar well that was the worse person to have behind the Bar, he would drink the profit. Then just up the road from there was Edgar Bate and Fanny and Bernard Miller and then the next one up was Mr and Mrs Brimmacombe and they had a couple there called Jim and Rene (she had a glass eye. You know looking one way and goin’ the other) and he was an elocution teacher. He would sit out on the hedge and the visitors would come up the Hill and go in the club, he would let them go in and get settled and then go in get chatting and the visitors would buy his drinks. Jim and Rene had the Golden Circle and of course they would like a drink and the Golden Circle were looking for speakers, entertainment you see. So they decided that Jim would talk to the Golden Circle one afternoon about his job as an Actor and Elocutionist. So this was all agreed and up they went, Golden Circle all assembled, sat down waiting for the Speaker to arrive, well the Speaker arrived with Jack Hicks, they had been to the pub since 12 o’clock and this was 2.30 and poor old Jim was a small bloke and he could hardly stand, never mind about elocution he could hardly speak.


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