Plymouth Hoe Centre

Late at night, we get a phone call to meet on Notte Street at the Plymouth Hoe Centre as the demolition crew had gone home

Making our way past a caravan we entered straight in through an open part of the building

The Plymouth Hoe Centre is originally a Naval, Army and Air Force Institutes (NAAFI) social club to designs of Ernest Martin Joseph

begun in 1949, the building is complete in 1952 and open by HRH Princess Margaret in July 1949.

The club at Plymouth, which replaced a temporary hutted club opened in March 1945

incorporated a restaurant, tavern and cocktail bar, dance hall,

reading and writing room, lounge, games room, and conference room, in addition to hostel accommodation.

Flats were also provided on the site for the Club Manager and Manageress.

Joseph had to work within several constraints in designing the building, making allowances for

unstable cellars and rubble from blitzed buildings, as well as a considerable ground fall from west to east and from south to north.

The building remained in use as a forces club – known latterly as the Plymouth Hoe Services Club – until 1969.

From 1980 to 2007 it was the Plymouth School of Architecture. 


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