History of the Assembly Rooms

The Assembly Rooms were built in 1843 as a Temperance Hall.

Founded in the 1820s, the temperance movement criticized excessive drinking. Originally focussing on spirits, the movement strengthened over time until eventually its members were discouraged from drinking any form of alcohol at all, eventually promoting teetotalism. The movement was very strong in America, Britain and British colonies such as New Zealand and Australia, using its political influence to encourage the governments to enact alcohol laws.

In Barton upon Humber, the Temperance Society was formed in 1837. It purchased the land on Queen Street and built the Assembly Rooms for the princely sum of £700. It was used for temperance meetings and hosted the County Court. It was closed in 1903 and offered for sale. It reopened as the Assembly Rooms, which it still is today, and became a social hub (and a nightclub for a time!)

Unfortunately, one can only imagine that the original builders would be less than pleased by the knowledge that their temperance hall now contains a bar, selling not only beer and wine, but spirits too.

Pictures of the Assembly Rooms

Please click to enlarge.