Brewery Yard Club sold

The Brewery Yard Club

The Brewery Yard Club, formerly the Rye British Legion Club in Landgate has finally been sold for £270,000 to Jennifer Mace, who has recently acquired the adjacent Eagle Cottages for residential redevelopment.
The property was first put on the market about two years ago at a price of £495,000, but negotiations with a potential purchaser fell through because of difficulties in obtaining planning permission.
According to Col. Anthony Kimber, RBL Rye branch president. it was built in the 1920s by public subscription to benefit ex-servicemen, including those who had returned from World War 1. Ownership of the clubhouse became vested in new trustees, following its disaffiliation from the Royal British Legion (RBL) in 2006.
In a recent letter to Brewery Yard Club members, trustees Roger Blackman and Nicholas Fielder advise that “no monies will be paid out to members or charities” until all legal fees and other costs have been paid.
It is understood that a number of artefacts belonging to the RBL Rye branch have been saved and will be handed back. Neale East, Rye branch  chairman said: “The RBL Rye branch continues its work of supporting the ex-servicemen and women of Rye.”

Photo: Kenneth Bird


  1. Having been a member of Rye British legion since 1961, also of R B L club until the brewery yard club took over. I stayed a member of the B Y C for 2plus years.I feel that all revenue left from the sale of the club should go to local Charities ,after legal fees have been deducted.
    Ernest VICAREY.

  2. How one must agree with Ernest Vicarey, I was also a member of that club for over 40 years,why did I cease my membership of the brewery club, because going there on different occasions the place was empty, if some of these so called members had supported the club, it may have still been open now,sadly so much bad history of that club spanning the 40 years that I was a member,to see others some who were not down there 10 minutes, leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

    • I totally agree with Ernie vicarey { my brother} and John Tollhurst comments I to was member for over 40 years at the Royal British legion and The Brewers yard serving on the committee for a period of time.
      My wife and I did our bit to help keep the club running for several years Entertaining club members club members family and friends Entertainment by means of Discos and Quizzes in the club and the community Centre also Children’s music disco Christmas parties in the club for many years all this Entertainment was free of charge to help the club Finances
      So therefore I think money that will be received from the sale of the property should all go to local charities.

  3. The Brewery Yard Club with the members of the club owning and running the club it’s the paid up members legal right to be paid out from the sale of the club. The club has to keep within the law
    Unlike the R B L who broke charity law by keeping the 57m they received for selling 300 club properties that closed instead of the clubs keeping the proceeded for their members and the local communities.
    The trustees, committee and member of the Brewery Yard Club will generously donate some of the proceeds to charity.

  4. Club buildings were originally paid by local fundraising efforts; they were then placed in branch property trusts, with a legal obligation to serve their immediate locality. When a club becomes unviable the national charity, as corporate trustee, can sell the building but must give public notice. The proceeds still have to be used locally in the first instance.
    The legion did not realise until 2011 that it had failed to give notice and was not entitled to spend windfall gains on its own choice of good causes. The legion found out it was breaching charity law. It was not entitled to channel £58m from club buildings into its unrestricted funds and £18m had already been wrongly spent because it had failed to comply with trust restrictions. At one point the legion’s free reserves dwindle to the equivalent of three week’s expenditure. When the legion discovered it was breaching charity law they call on the Charity Commission for assistance to help by amending the trust restrictions the legion management said it could take until 2019 to sort out the mess.
    Neale I do not know if you call it breaking the law, breaching the law or just miss management. If the Brewery Yard Club had been aware of the charity law at the time they might have not disaffiliate from RBL.


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