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Mornington Hall history

An important part of Chingford's past, present and future

Mornington Hall is now the home of Chingford's longest-running amateur dramatics group, CADOS. But it didn't start life as a theatre and community hub.

Mornington Hall then...

Mornington School, later known as Mornington Hall, was built at the end of The Green Walk by Chingford Green in 1924.

 

An ex-pupil has told us that when the school relocated to Kings Road, the children used to walk to Mornington Hall holding hands in a little crocodile chain to have their lunch. He said the meat was tough but the jam roly poly was lovely!

 

Just before World War II, the Council took over the hall as Headquarters of the Wardens' Service. It was later used as a British Restaurant. The menu offered a choice of five main courses and puddings. The Ministry of Food said this would offer ‘one third of the day’s energy needs’, and all for 9d!

Mornington Hall returned to being a school canteen after that. Many Chingford residents (including a couple of CADOS members) remember eating school dinners there.

Group of women outside Mornington Restaurant in Chingford before it was Mornington Hall
Front of Mornington Hall in Chingford

....Mornington Hall now

In 2002, Waltham Forest Council had plans to auction Mornington Hall for development. It had been managed by the Council for several years, and used for wedding receptions, children’s parties and meetings.

 

CADOS approached the Council to take on the hall. After considerable opposition and many meetings, we took on a 50 year fully maintaining lease in 2004.

 

Since then, CADOS has invested around £20k to develop the hall as a permanent space for rehearsals and performances. Many other local groups and small businesses hire Mornington Hall from us. They offer a diverse range of community activities. These include:

Our regular hirers help to pay the rent and make sure Mornington Hall remains a thriving community venue.

 

We must also thank CADOS members and other volunteers for maintaining our fabulous historic hall and helping to raise funds for CADOS. We can only keep Mornington Hall running for everyone to enjoy thanks to their hard work and the ongoing support of local people.