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  #1  
Old 2nd August 2009
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Question 1962: Britain's first Casino - Brighton, London or Southport?

Doing a keyword search at ITNSource.com I've come across this description of a clip in Reuters video archive.


U.K.: BRIGHTON: BRITAIN'S FIRST CASINO
Clip Description:
http://www.itnsource.com/shotlist//R...0006/?s=casino

Story

BRITAIN'S FIRST CASINO WAS DUE TO OPEN AT THE FASHIONABLE SEASIDE RESORT OF BRIGHTON, ON THE SOUTH COAST OF ENGLAND, JUNE 2. PREVIEW SCENES WERE FILMED ON JUNE 1.

AT ELEVEN TABLES IN THE CLARENCE ROOM OF THE METROPOLE HOTEL, CHEMIN-DE-FER, CHEMMY ROULETTE, CHEMMY DICE AND QUATRE CHANCE WILL BE PLAYED AT ALL HOURS OF THE DAY OR NIGHT WHENEVER THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO WANT A GAME. BECAUSE OF THE GAMING ACT, ONLY MEMBERS CAN PLAY AND THEY ALREADY NUMBER HUNDREDS.

UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT, CLIENTS MUST HAVE AN EQUAL CHANCE. BUT THE PROMOTERS EXPECT CHANCE TO BE KIND. ABOUT GBP250,000 POUNDS ARE SAID TO HAVE GONE INTO THE VENTURE. THERE ARE MEMBERSHIP AND TABLE FEES, CHIPS REPRESENTING TWO SHILLINGS AND SIXPENCE TO A HUNDRED POUNDS, AND MAXIMUM STAKES OF GBP400 IN SPECIAL CONDITIONS.

A STAFF OF 100 - RECRUITED FROM BANK CLERKS, TEACHERS AND ARMY OFFICERS - HAVE BEEN TRAINED BY A PROFESSIONAL FRENCH CROUPIER. UNDER THE SECURITY ARRANGEMENTS, GUARDS WILL BE AT THE DOORS AND SPECIAL PASSES ISSUED TO MEMBERS WILL BE CHECKED AND CHECKED AGAIN.

WHAT SORT OF PEOPLE WILL FREQUENT THE METROPOLE CASINO CLUB? THE CLUB'S DIRECTOR-GENERAL, M.JEAN-MARIE CRUCIANI, WHO RESIGNED FROM A FRENCH CASINO TO COME TO BRITAIN, SAID HE WAS TRYING TO ATTRACT ALL SORTS OF NICE, DECENT PEACEABLE PEOPLE - JUST LADIES AND GENTLEMEN WITH ??? MORE OR LESS.".



What do you think. Correct - or were there other operations up and down the country that had already opened for business ?


Ian
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Last edited by ian; 5th June 2013 at 12:14 PM. Reason: Changed title
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  #2  
Old 2nd August 2009
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Arrow January 1962 - Chemmy by the Thames

Dug a little deeper into this and it appears that Britain's first casino was actually a ship on the Thames.


British Movietone News - Thu 11 Jan 1962
Chemmy by the Thames
http://www.movietone.com/N_search.cf...ultsPerPage=10

Summary

MOVIETONE CARD TITLE: Chemmy By the Thames.
DESCRIPTION: Old Father Thames has seen a good many things in his time, but now some new goings on have started right on the bank of the river. Parliament has decreed it's legal to play chemin de fer (commonly known as chemmy), and the River Casino is the first French-style casino of the kind to open in Britain. Arriving by water as yachtsmen could do, our camera crew had come to get an impression of the scene. SHOTLIST: Key scene. LS boat. CU funnel. MS boat under bridge. GV Big Ben. MS boat on river. MS ditto. CU man's hand. MS cameraman. GV people at table. CU sign. CU money. MS man. MS six-pack shoe. MCU woman. CU woman places bet. CU man. MS man with cards. MCU man with cards. MCU man and woman. MS ditto. MS man. MS game. MS banker. MS game. MCU woman drinking.


ITN Source
CHEMIN-DER-FER CASINO
http://www.itnsource.com/en/shotlist...+fer&st=0&pn=1



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  #3  
Old 5th August 2009
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Smile UK's First Casino

The clip is right... the Metropole Brighton was Britain's first proper land based casino under the loophole of the Betting and Gaming Act 1960.

The casino remained in the same location for more than 20 years but issues with access to the gaming floor through the Hotel & the need to build a new dedicated entrance + additional local competition slowly starved it into history.

In the late 70's / early 80's the casino was closed and the licence transferred to the new International Club a few hundred yards away in Preston Street - (now Genting's Mint casino)
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  #4  
Old 11th August 2009
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My first night

As of early 1983 both the casino at the Metropole Hotel and the International Sporting Club on Preston Street next door were in operation, I'm not sure when the hotel casino finally closed. The ISC had opened on April 2nd 1982 (Falklands War anyone?) and we had been in training waiting for the transfer of the license from Corals. As our gaming licenses came through one by one we were told we were going to do some odd shifts at the Hotel before the ISC opened. Hence my first night working as a dealer in 1982 was at the Metropole Hotel - I can remember them scratching at the doors in reception at five till eight while I stood trembling at the roulette table closest to them - aaagghhh!!!!!!
I do remember and often talk of the two and six chips Thorndyke mentions above - they were plum colored and each table had one stack to use as an odd 25p when coloring up. What was amazing about them was that they were made of slate, twenty seven years later, still the finest chips I have handled.
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  #5  
Old 4th March 2010
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Lightbulb Scotland - 1958 & 59

The operation in Brighton detailed above wasn't Britain's fist casino at all.


Doing a search on the European Document website Europeana there were several operations open in Scotland at the end of the 1950's.
http://www.europeana.eu


This one is dated 27th September, 1958.

Gambling - All eyes on the table during a roulette game at the 88 Club
http://www.scran.ac.uk/database/reco...00-000-053-366


The New Grafton Gambling Club in January 1959.

New Grafton Gambling Club - 16 Home Street - First game of Roulette
http://www.scran.ac.uk/database/reco...earchdb=scran&


28th March, 1959.

Calton gambling club opened - Mr G Slappatiece manager - Spins roulette wheel
http://www.scran.ac.uk/database/reco...earchdb=scran&


Pity that the images are so small


Perhaps we also think of guides to gaming as something new.
Obviously not.... This one is from circa 1860.

Der perfecte Kartenspieler oder practische Anleitung zur leichten Erlernung von 86 Kartenspielen
http://www.digitale-sammlungen.de/~d...014695/images/

Ian
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Last edited by ian; 7th December 2012 at 01:11 AM. Reason: Changed links to ones that work
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  #6  
Old 17th October 2010
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casinos in London on the 60's

following on from Ian's thread about the casino scene in the UK in the 60's a quick Google search led me to an article by an American chap called randy Steed whose book Once Upon a Time in London detailed a lot of casino's in London, some could have had openings in the 50's possibly may be someone could put some dates to the clubs he listed;

Quent's
Crockfords
The Pair of Shoes
The Apron Strings
The Cromwellian Club
Charlie Chesters
The Mint Kilburn
The 45
George Rafts Colony Club
Villa Bayswater Road
The Earls Court Card Club
Marzurka Club Soho
The Knightsbridge Sporting Club
Esmeraldas Barn.
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  #7  
Old 30th November 2016
TrevR TrevR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 711 Moike View Post
As of early 1983 both the casino at the Metropole Hotel and the International Sporting Club on Preston Street next door were in operation, I'm not sure when the hotel casino finally closed. The ISC had opened on April 2nd 1982 (Falklands War anyone?) and we had been in training waiting for the transfer of the license from Corals. As our gaming licenses came through one by one we were told we were going to do some odd shifts at the Hotel before the ISC opened. Hence my first night working as a dealer in 1982 was at the Metropole Hotel - I can remember them scratching at the doors in reception at five till eight while I stood trembling at the roulette table closest to them - aaagghhh!!!!!!
I do remember and often talk of the two and six chips Thorndyke mentions above - they were plum colored and each table had one stack to use as an odd 25p when coloring up. What was amazing about them was that they were made of slate, twenty seven years later, still the finest chips I have handled.
Got that right Moike :-)

I worked at the Brighton International 1983/1984. Quite often on arriving at work we were sent over to help out at the Metropole. The manager was called Henry.

Last edited by TrevR; 30th November 2016 at 03:27 PM. Reason: Spelling
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  #8  
Old 10th February 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ian View Post
Dug a little deeper into this and it appears that Britain's first casino was actually a ship on the Thames.


British Movietone News
Thu 11 Jan 1962

Item Title
Chemmy by the Thames
http://public.bufvc.ac.uk/BUND/detai...tory_id=024449


Summary

MOVIETONE CARD TITLE: Chemmy By the Thames.
DESCRIPTION: Old Father Thames has seen a good many things in his time, but now some new goings on have started right on the bank of the river. Parliament has decreed it's legal to play chemin de fer (commonly known as chemmy), and the River Casino is the first French-style casino of the kind to open in Britain. Arriving by water as yachtsmen could do, our camera crew had come to get an impression of the scene. SHOTLIST: Key scene. LS boat. CU funnel. MS boat under bridge. GV Big Ben. MS boat on river. MS ditto. CU man's hand. MS cameraman. GV people at table. CU sign. CU money. MS man. MS six-pack shoe. MCU woman. CU woman places bet. CU man. MS man with cards. MCU man with cards. MCU man and woman. MS ditto. MS man. MS game. MS banker. MS game. MCU woman drinking.



Ian
I could not open this attachment but is this the casino on Taggs Island in the middle of the Thames near Hampton Court
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  #9  
Old 10th February 2011
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Re The White Elephant Club

The White Elephant Club was located at the current site of Aspinalls Casino at 27 or 28 Curzon Street.

http://www.aspinalls.com/club/clermont-club.asp
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  #10  
Old 10th February 2011
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Originally Posted by Honest Al View Post
The White Elephant Club was located at the current site of Aspinalls Casino at 27 or 28 Curzon Street.

http://www.aspinalls.com/club/clermont-club.asp
twas 28 Curzon Street then they bought the house next door and converted the 2 buildings to become the Aspinalls that we see now
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  #11  
Old 10th February 2011
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Lightbulb One clip disappeared but...

The 1962 Chemmy on the Thames fim that was at Movietone News has disappeared but I've found a similar - possibly the same clip at ITNSource.


8th January, 1962
CHEMIN-DER-FER CASINO
http://www.itnsource.com/shotlist//I...08/FS080162005


The operation appears to be on the Thames in Chelsea but the interiors don't seem to match the original shot of the boat.

Reporter: Liz Kenrick
Chairman Mr.Leo Ponte.



Let's see if I can find anything else...
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