Britannia Club Singapore smashed up...... RAF types say its no longer a fit place

#1
Ok, by chance I came upon this article in the Singapore Straits Times for 14 March 1956.

Who the hell was smashing up the Britannia club and scaring the bejebas out of the RAF types who said it was no longer a fit place for peaceable people.......?

Newspaper Article - BRITANNIA CLUB WRECKED BY FIGHTS? RUBBISH

To jog memories, some photos are here:

Singapore in the '60s

I believe its still there. I am back in a couple of weeks and will take a look.

Anyone remember the club?
 
#2
Aaahh, the Brit Club - I spent many a good time there in the late '60's.

It hasn't been demolished, only the pool has been destroyed. Apparently, the pool is now the site of an MRT (Mass Rapid Transport) station. The Club was built on the instructions of Lady Nuffield its history goes something like this:

Lord Nuffield wanted to built a NCO's and OR (other rank) Club and was looking around Singapore for a suitable location. When Lady Nuffield found that Raffles didn't allow lowly military types to cross the threshold of their hallowed premises and her being a staunch supporter of the military, she pulled some strings, bought the land in front of Raffles, built the Brit Club and, disasters of disasters for Raffles and their guests, their sea view vanished.

The Raffles people were not happy at all and we constantly went in there to bug them....it's prices are now somewhere in the stratosphere, now, but hey-ho.....
 
#3
Brit club is now singapore police senior ranks club, will be there on the 27th!!
 
#4
I was born in Singapore in the late 60s but both my parents died 20 years ago. Now Im in my mid 40s Im wondering about stuff. Apparently we lived on the Wessex estate, number 10.Is that still there ? I wont ever go back, no way could I afford the airfair plus what for ?I have no business out there. I wonder if its possible to find my house, I don't remember any of it and we left to go back to England when I was 2 .
 
#6
I was born in Singapore in the late 60s but both my parents died 20 years ago. Now Im in my mid 40s Im wondering about stuff. Apparently we lived on the Wessex estate, number 10.Is that still there ? I wont ever go back, no way could I afford the airfair plus what for ?I have no business out there. I wonder if its possible to find my house, I don't remember any of it and we left to go back to England when I was 2 .
I believe Wessex is still there unlike Sussex which got bulldozed years ago.

There is a map here:
http://i257.photobucket.com/albums/hh205/myhometown01/Capture-28.jpg


An article here:
Wessex Estate | Expat Living Singapore


and photos here:
Layout 1
 
#7
Thanks very much Bumhole, I notice on the plan a "Ayer Rahjah camp" ... quite near the estate. We had a spotty dog called Rahjah in the early 70s... always wondered about that !
 
#8
Ok, by chance I came upon this article in the Singapore Straits Times for 14 March 1956.

Who the hell was smashing up the Britannia club and scaring the bejebas out of the RAF types who said it was no longer a fit place for peaceable people.......?

Newspaper Article - BRITANNIA CLUB WRECKED BY FIGHTS? RUBBISH

To jog memories, some photos are here:

Singapore in the '60s

I believe its still there. I am back in a couple of weeks and will take a look.

Anyone remember the club?
Was stationed in Terendak Camp Malacca '64/'67. Went down to Singapore twice on post-Borneo tour leave. Spent a fair bit of time in The Brit Club. Seem to remember a problem of drunks entering the pool from a 1st floor balcony. Saw some rucks in there sometimes involving septics on R&R from Vietnam!
 
#9
Aye, Don. Great days. At one time in that era there were Scots Guardsmen, Argylls, Gordons, and KOSBs out on the razzle in Singapore, all flush with 'credits' after tours in Borneo!
 
#11
Happy days, I was both a Dover Dolphin and Tanglin Otter, also remember playing near the warren Gold Club as we lived on Dover Road. The days of being a pad brat and flying back on BOAC to school, the joys of the Empire!
 
#12
I was born in Singapore in the late 60s but both my parents died 20 years ago. Now Im in my mid 40s Im wondering about stuff. Apparently we lived on the Wessex estate, number 10.Is that still there ? I wont ever go back, no way could I afford the airfair plus what for ?I have no business out there. I wonder if its possible to find my house, I don't remember any of it and we left to go back to England when I was 2 .
We were out there 68-70, my brothers were born at Changi! We lived in Chichester Ave which sounds like it might be the same type of area, I think it was classed as Seletar Hills?


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#13
Aye, Don. Great days. At one time in that era there were Scots Guardsmen, Argylls, Gordons, and KOSBs out on the razzle in Singapore, all flush with 'credits' after tours in Borneo!
I was one of the SG of which you speak.
I also remember 3 of us crossing the road to The Raffles and had a few beers in the bar there. Asked to leave when one of our number got pissed and insisted on trying to play the piano on the stage in the ballroom. No, he couldn't play the piano drunk or sober. We were amazed we were allowed in in shirts' shorts and flip flops.
Other thing I recall was a giant Sikh outside the UJ club who liked to demonstrate his strength by swinging a big set of Indian Clubs. Needless to say, nobody took the piss out of him! And then there was Bugis Street!!
 
#14
pimpernel, I served at Meiktila and Princess Mary Barracks down Dover Road and remember vividly running through Warren Golf Club when we did our weekly cross-country run - if you were one of the stragglers like me, the OC would wait for you and then chase you so you would catch up with the rest. He would then put on a spurt and (quite often) run to the head of the pack......

We often went to the Dover Road pool and also the Sandys Home in Pasir Panjang the facilities there were great. IIRC the place was run by a Scottish lady called Mrs Rogers - she was mighty fierce!!
 
#15
I was there in 65 and the thick twats from the cheshire regt were trying to show off to the wives who were at the swimming pool,by head butting the wall to see who could have the most blood running down their faces,what a bunch of *********,all they succeeded in doing was to make themselves a laughing stock.
 
#16
The best posting of them all, Singas, after duties and night life were riotous fun and many good afternoons spent in the Brit Club then going back to Bks to get changed and foraying out again to sample the delights of Bugis Strasse and other dubious haunts, but sadly I ended up being barred from the Raffles, big time, and I was never given a reason why, still, fcuk em, I never did like the door service there anyway.
 
#17
Thanks very much Bumhole, I notice on the plan a "Ayer Rahjah camp" ... quite near the estate. We had a spotty dog called Rahjah in the early 70s... always wondered about that !
Did my Trade II -I at REME Trg. Centre, Ayer Rajah Road( 40 Base Wksp.). Did my Unit Projectionist Course at the AKC Kent, Dover Road. My crowning acheivement, however, was being removed from the NAAFI Bar, BMH Singapore, along with my mate, the late Rob Dyer, by the Shore Patrol. How we laughed...
 
#18
I just spent a week in Singapore, the first time for many many years that I had been there other than for "fly in and fly out" meetings.

Boat Quay is now a very trendy eating an drinking area, and not a single bumboat remains. Clarke Quay just up the river is the same - trendy bars. Lots of ladies of ill repute in the bars and on Orchard Road after midnight. some of them were badly disguised guys in dresses.... Others were truly beautiful. Most seemed to come from China, Cambodia and Laos.

Singapore still seems to be booming. Lot of money, everything new, clean and efficient. I have to say, I was in the UK the week before and it seems Singapore is doing far better then the UK these days.

I went past the Britannia, but I was too pissed to really notice.

One final note: On the plane I watched a movie called "Ah men to boys", about national service in Singapore. Obviously its still VERY modeled on the UK system. The movie was shite, but the odd bit was the basic training staff comments, attitudes and humour.

A section of the movie is on youtube, and it might make some laugh - or even nostalgic.

Ah boys to men full movie - YouTube
 
#19
Sadly that movie's been pulled from youtube. I have very happy memories of both the Brit Club and in particular Dover Road. Where else in the world but Dover Road could you watch a regimental team play football under floodlights while supping beer from the NAAFI bar at the ground? Even the 3rd team used to get a pretty full house. Warren GC was originally built by 18 Sigs for a golf-mad CO, though not entirely in its later form as it was originally both sides of the road. Dave might remember seeing the overgrown remains of bits of the original in the jungly bit between PM and Meiktila Bks. My tour was actually in Hong Kong, but did a couple of longish courses in the Sigs Trg Centre in Meiktila. You wouldn't believe how refreshing the Dover Road complex was after half a tour with nothing but massive buildings towering over you. Apart from anything else, grasscutting in HK smelled like shite, in Dover Rd, where it was constant, it smelled like grass! As the mastercard ad says, Priceless!
 
#20
Jimmy25...You've just brought a memory crashing back with your "grasscutting in HK smelled like shite, in Dover Rod, where it was constant, it smelled like grass" comment.

I'd been in Princess Mary for about 3 months and had just come in from shift. The mowers were going ten to the dozen outside and on my bed was a tube of stuff about 3" long. I picked it up, smelled it and said "this smells like grass", "Yeah, that's right, Dave"....."Well what the hell is it doing on my bed?" I said and promptly threw it over the balcony. Cue a massive rush out of the room to rescue the grass before the grasscutters shredded the tube.

Obviously, I grew up right there and then....I had no idea Mary Jane was called grass......:)

Jimmy, see your PM
 
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