Radio host, Robin Elms, used to visit India Club at 143 Strand in his student days. Here he is joined by special guest, Dr Kusoom Vadgama, in talking about why the building is so precious to Londoners.
BBC Robert Elms Show, India Club at 143 Strand
January 3rd, 2018
BBC Robert Elms Show - INDIA CLUB interview
00:00 / 00:00
"London's India club is a café that once used to be the centre of post-colonial conversation over curry and more."
The India Club is one of the city’s most fascinating post-colonial relics: a bar, lounge and Indian restaurant (one of the UK’s oldest) that’s hardly changed in 65 years. Last summer it was saved from redevelopment, and this week the National Trust opens an on-site exhibition which explores its history and celebrates the survival of a London institution.
“A Home Away from Home” exhibition, organised by the National Trust, tapped into a “treasure trove” of history on the India Club which emerged in part thanks to recent efforts to save it from eviction.
Yahoo News: London's India Club, saved from developers, celebrates its history
The National Trust’s A Home Away from Home: The India Club is a site-specific ‘pop-up’ exhibition taking place inside the Strand club that shines a light on this rich social history and showcases the significance of the India Club as an important meeting point and community space.
Museum Crush: The social history of the Indian diaspora at the India Club
Virtually unchanged for over 50 years, the India Club is a unique space that acts as a vibrant hub for a range of Anglo-Indian organisations and an extended community of journalists, writers, artists, academics and students who regularly meet there.
"The India Club on London’s famous Strand has been like a little slice of the sub-continent in the heart of the capital. Acting as a social centre, meeting place, and dining room, the club has remained virtually unchanged since the 1950s and is regarded by many south Asian ex-pats as a part of their cultural heritage."
The Telegraph: Future of India Club on London's Strand under threat from developers
"Plans to renovate a historic and beloved Indian restaurant in central London are causing a stir, pitting the developers against high profile defenders, including intellectuals, Anglo-Indian businessmen and lawmakers from both countries."
Daily Mail: Plans for London's historic India Club cook up storm
With its fading portraits of Mahatma Gandhi, Formica-topped tables and £1 nan bread, it is one of Britain’s most idiosyncratic curry houses...Supporters include the author Will Self, who describes the institution as “an integral part of my life”, and a scion of Lord Mountbatten, the last viceroy of India.
The Sunday Times: Diners find threat to Raj relic, the India Club, hard to digest
"India Club is a physical reminder of the past, a bridge between cultures...It would be a great tragedy if the 70th year of Indian independence was marked by the disappearance of an institution of such historic bilateral significance...It is an anachronism in central London – not preserved as a museum piece for curious spectators, but a living and breathing place, albeit caught in a time-warp with legion admirers.
The Wire: Is it the End of the Road for London’s Historic India Club?
Its astonishing history puts The India Club firmly in 'semi-hidden gem' territory. The restaurant is where the India League used to convene in the capital, partly to placate homesickness, and partly to talk politics.
The Londonist: This Curry Restaurant Hasn't Changed In 60 Years, And Is All The Better For It