Blog > How it all begun. Clubs and activities at Oxford House 1884

How it all begun. Clubs and activities at Oxford House 1884

“Education, Temperance, Religion Equality, Fraternity, Success to Oxford House!” could be read in the entrance banners at first premises used under the Oxford House. These provided lodgings for three or four graduates to reside and work in the local neighbourhood, providing help and assistance to the poor and dispossessed of the surrounding area through a variety of activities to ‘Labour refuges or shelters for congested gentlemen in the East End”.

• Boys and Men Clubs
• Sunday evening for a smoke and a talk
• Library
• Sunday afternoon Bible lectures

The Oxford House in Bethnal Green was described as ‘religious in motive while secular in working’. The work focused initially on clubs, lectures and instruction for men and boys. Starting with four residents in 1884, by 1892 there were 28 residents and workers, 22 of them from Oxford and the attendance on Sunday nights had reached over 400.

“We wanted to get a footing in the place, and we found that the best way was to start a club and provide a place to spend the evening in without politics or drink and Sunday lectures we showed that we were Christians out for the conversion of souls’.

BRADLEY I. “Oxford House in Bethnal Green 1884-1984”. Oxford House 1984

“Oxford House in Bethnal Green 1884-1948

Image: University Missions at the East End Oxford House Bethenal Green 1888 – Illustration Sunday Afternoon  Lectures at Victoria Park