ONE of the UK’s oldest social clubs which is fighting for survival recently welcomed borough councillors and the MP for North East Hampshire to discuss its fundraising.

Sherborne St John Social Club, which is celebrating its 120th anniversary this year, needs an estimated £100,000 for major improvements, including the urgent need for facilities for disabled people and energy-saving renovations.

On March 17 the club and members of the Sherborne St John parish welcomed Ranil Jayawardena MP and councillors Jay Ganesh, Simon Minas-Bound and Rhydian Vaughn MBE, to discuss the club and its fundraising plans, before enjoying breakfast and participating in a game of skittles.

A spokesperson for the social club said: "We are so happy with how the fundraising has been going, and to have the councillors and Ranil join us was quite something. We're getting some fantastic support from the community. Our councillors' and MP's support is most appreciated, and thank you to Cllr Rhydian Vaughn MBE for a kind donation of £1,000."

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The donation now means the social club has raised £10,000 and can begin refurbishment works in the club's toilets.

Basingstoke Gazette:

Cllr Ganesh said: “It was great to meet with Sherborne St John Social Club committee and residents at the social club with Ranil Jayawardena MP, county councillor Rhydian Vaughan and council leader Simon Minas-Bound. We heard about the social club’s future plans and discussed local issues with residents.

"We were delighted to hear that our ward councillor’s grant contributions meant a milestone in their fundraising has been met and the toilet refurbishment works can begin."

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Cllr Ganesh added: "Social clubs are vital to the communities, especially in rural villages where residents can meet and interact. Sherborne St John Social Club committee is commendable for working extremely hard to revive the oldest social club in Hampshire and they will always have us councillors and the community’s support."

Ranil Jayawardena MP said: “It was lovely to visit Sherborne St John Social Club, where I heard about the fantastic plans to revive Hampshire’s oldest social club, and discussed local issues with club members."

More information on events and the social club can be found at or on Facebook at For information on how to donate to Sherborne St John Social Club, visit