Project Purley

The Local History Society for Purley on Thames

S0001 18/11/18 level 2

Social Life in Purley


This Section is principally about the several sporting and recreational activities pursued by the people of Purley over the years. It also covers many of the activities pursued by people in their spare time.

Historically recreation was not something that figured in the daily lives of the majority of the population. Life was an unremitting round of work and striving to bring up a family or cling to existence. It was not until well into the 20th century that leisure time was available and affordable.

The traditional country pastimes had been practised by all, whether legally or illegally and many still continue to this day.

We cover those activities by which people pass the time. They may be things that people do by themselves but usually groups are involved. Thus in several of the sections the history of these clubs and societies is told. Again and again one finds that the activity continues while clubs wax and wane, usually depending upon the enthusiasm or initiative of one or two individuals.

This section is about the many clubs and societies that have thrived in Purley over the years. Below you will see a list groupings If you click on the heading you will see a list of the organisations from which you can select one:-

Adult Social Organisations

These are organisations whose objectives span a wide range of interests and principally provide either a 'night out' or an opportunity to socialise during the daytime.

We include culture which has always been somewhat difficult to define. However we use a definition which ranges from purely intellectual activities to the practice of the arts.


This section covers the physical activities which are normally associated with 'Sport', however a somewhat wider definition is used. Seprate sub-sections provide for themajor sports of Cricket, Football and Tennis which have had clubs and teams which used the name of Purley.

Young People's Organisations

Youth groups span all the other categories. We do not include sports teams composed of young people but we do cover all the other groups which have been established to cater for the youth of the village, ie up to age 18 or so.

Charity and Voluntary Groups

This section covers the organisations whose main aim is to serve others in the community rather than being for the benefit of its members.

Village Events

This section covers the events which have taken place which are open to the public and are generally designed to raise money. Thus it includes Fairs and Circuses along with jumble sales and fetes.

We also recall how Purley has celebrated the several National Events such as Coronations and Victory celebrations over the years.

Miscellaneous activities

This section includes a wide variety of activity from personal hobbies to campaigns and protests and residents associations

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