Singapore Recreation Club
One of only a few sports clubs established during Colonial Times, the Singapore Recreation Club (SRC) was founded in 1883 with the main objective of encouraging amateur sports in Singapore.
During this era, ethnic community organizations and groups dominated the commercial and social life of colonial Singapore. Amid these circumstances, some 30 members of the Eurasian community met at a building in Waterloo Street on 23 June 1883, laying the foundations for what was later to become the SRC. The club functioned from this shop house until it moved to its Padang location during the 1890's.
Cricket was the main sporting activity of the club and the first match reportedly played was between the SRC and the British Royal Artillery on 1 Sep 1883. The then governor, Sir Cecil Clementi Smith in order to provide sporting facilities for the Eurasian community, granted approval for a sports pavilion at the north end of the Padang on 25 March 1884.
The first pavilion was ready in Nov 1885 and the club then recorded 37 registered members. A year later, in 1886, it was decided that the club's colors be Navy blue and Red.
When by 1891 membership had reached 170, plans were made for a larger pavilion. This new clubhouse pavilion was completed on 8 Aug 1905 and declared open by then Governor, Sir J Anderson on 2 Sep 1905.
This second pavilion sits on what is now the present site of the SRC – the original pavilion structure had remained until 1994 when it was demolished to make way for a brand new clubhouse building.
Rugby was introduced and played in 1938 and while hockey, tennis and football were played to enthusiastic support, cricket remained the lead sport of the club.
After WW2, a small group of members met on March 1946 to discuss the re-activation of the club and by Sept 1946 activities were revived. A cricket team was formed together with a football team during this period that went on to win the Victory Cup* in 1948.
At a historic meeting held on 11 Feb 1963, SRC members agreed, by an overwhelming majority of votes, to open ordinary membership of the club to all communities within Singapore, effectively ending 80 years of restricted membership based on race.
Spanning 114 years of sporting and cultural heritage, the new SRC clubhouse was opened on 28 June 1997 with a built in area of 20,500sq m. It has an underground swimming pool, a rock-wall for climbing, a bowling centre, a gymnasium and grass courts for tennis.
Ever since its founding in 1883, the SRC has held the distinction of being a club whose principle objective has been the encouragement of sports in Singapore . In spite of its well-known history over the years, the SRC still holds strongly to these sporting ideals today.
* The Victory Cup was presented by the Singapore Amateur Football Association to commemorate the wartime victory over Japan