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Wanderers Club
Johannesburg, Gauteng

REID, AH and W: Architect


(Gutsche 1966:94)


Here is another view of Johannesburg, bringing into its foreground the Pavilion and grounds of its celebrated Wanderers' Club - a Club which for comprehensiveness and all-round excellence, may be said to be unequalled in the world. While others take up but one or two branches of athletics, the "Wanderers" goes in for all, and does them all well. Football, cricket, lawn tennis, cycling and gymnastics have each their different sections. Its grounds are magnificently lit by electric light supplied from the Club's own engine, and in the splendid pavilion nearly all the big balls take place. There is a band of about fifty performers, besides orchestral and dramatic sections, who give excellent performances on the handsome stage at one end of the hall.

Ref: Photographs of South Africa comprising Representative Views etc.; The South African Photo-Publishing Company, Cape Town, 1894: pg 111.

[Submitted by William MARTINSON, January 2011]

At a meeting of the Union Cabinet, the decision was taken to expropriate the entire Wanderers ground for the expansion of Park Station and on the 1st June 1945, notice was served giving the Club six months to remove.

People wept when the Wanderers closed and every newspaper published nostalgic notices, pictures and cartoons. On Sunday the 27th October 1946, the leave-taking ceremonies took place accompanied by laments from the pipe band of the Transvaal Scottish. Matches with teams of “old-timers” had been organised on every remaining field and the occasion was intended to be gay. A huge and tattered old flag in the Wanderers colours hung listlessly from a masthead on the main field.

The building was demolished in 1946.

[Extracted from The history of the Wanderers Club 1888 to 1968 by Thelma Gutsche]

Visit the Wanderers Club website.

All truncated references not fully cited below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.