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To think that all-men working men's clubs are against the law?

(27 Posts)
oneofsuesylvesterscheerios Fri 30-Sep-11 09:31:11

Dh is a member along with our next door neighbour and I'm a bit hmm about the idea but in reality it means they just sit about drinking mild for 2p a pint and play snooker and I wouldn't be seen dead in there anyway.

But some 21st century boy there recently suggested they have a NYE party there with partners invited. His suggestion was thrown out at latest committee meeting with such talk as 'thin end of the wedge'. Dh has made the mistake of telling me this and it has really gotten on my norks. Dh thinks I ABU as I wouldn't want to go anyway, but I object to anyone in this day and age stopping my entrance into a place, on a point of principle.

I am really not interested in advice like 'your Dh sounds like a twat, change the locks etc' ... Was just wondering if it's actually legal these days?

I thank you

aldiwhore Fri 30-Sep-11 09:36:06

I think private clubs can admit whoever they choose.

I know that in our local Golf Club they had to admit women into the men's bar AND allow men into the 'Lady's Lounge' by law, but I think that's because members can be of either gender, and therefore a member should not be segragated??

But a closed club, not so sure they can openly state they don't accept women, can still be single gender by filtering out candidates who don't 'fit' (so long as they don't say 'you can't join because you're a woman').

Not sure exactly of the law, but like most laws, there's a way round it.

elesbells Fri 30-Sep-11 09:42:25

Oh it gets on my nerves...my grandparents live in Wales and they have a social club with one side of the bar being 'men only' and the other is 'general public' ...like the men are a superior species hmm

Well, me being me, I crossed the 'boundary' and asked for a drink and they served me....I didn't know whether to be smug....or insulted grin

Vicky2011 Fri 30-Sep-11 09:47:35

Yes I think it's legal for private clubs to set there own membership rules. Would be interesting to test the law on race though. I don't know why but I have a feeling the law may provide more protection to ethnic minorities than women. I should add though it is equally legal to have a women-only club.

Still dinosaurs though.

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 09:52:14

Associations for persons only of one gender, race (but not colour), religion, etc., are still lawful. But if they do admit women, etc., it must be on equal terms. That's roughly it. Freedom of association is a protected right under ECHR and the freedom to associate includes the freedom not to associate.

Not political parties and not trade unions which must not discriminate in admissions.

slavetofilofax Fri 30-Sep-11 09:53:20

Agree with the others, if it's a private club on private property, they can allow in who they like.

If I decided to start a private mother and baby club in a purpose built facility that I own, surely it wouldn't be illegal for me to say that I don't want to admit teenagers, or businessmen?

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 09:55:09

You might have to admit teenage mothers grin

Why exclude businessmen and not all men? grin

slavetofilofax Fri 30-Sep-11 09:57:23

Because it's up to MEEE if it's MY club! grin

SoupDragon Fri 30-Sep-11 09:57:56

There are women only gyms [shrug] I can't get too excited about it TBH provided there are enough social facilities for everyone.

CustardCake Fri 30-Sep-11 10:06:36

Lots of golf clubs ban women members from being full members so they can't play on Saturdays (considered to be the most desirable day to play if you like golf apparently!) and they ban them from the bar - the presumption being that women have all week to swan around playing golf and that drinking in public is unseemly and hinders male conversations taking place!

It is a bit of an odd concept in this day and age but its all perfectly legal. As long as they treat their employees equally, private member clubs are allowed to discriminate amongst members like this if they want to.

aldiwhore Fri 30-Sep-11 10:12:59

CustardCake that's my beef. Not working men's clubs where I'm not allowed, meh, wouldn't want to go anyway! But IF I am invited to be there, it HAS to be as an equal.

So when my MIL's wake took place at the local Golf Club, I did have a mild strop about being unable to enter the bar area. I went in anyway, no one said anything as for all the balls in the Golf Club, the men in the bar didn't have any. smile

TurkeyBurgerThing Fri 30-Sep-11 10:18:16

But surely if someone started a club called the "White People's Club" and they didn't allow other people of ethnic origins then there would be utter uproar and it would be closed within hours?

So why is it still acceptable to be so blatantly sexist? Is sexism more acceptable than racism or homaphobia simply because it instantly affects 1/2 of the world's population rather than a "minority"?

mayorquimby Fri 30-Sep-11 11:02:39

WHy do you think they'd be forced to close? If it was a private club, for white people only in a privately owned building then there's nothing anyone could do about it.
What normally happens is that unpopular and inflammatory groups like that will come undone on the grounds of licensing for bars on the premises (this is the grounds the Portmarnock Golf club cae was argued in Ireland) or tenancy agreements will be anulled after the uproar or backlash if it became a newsworthy item.
If however I decide to set up a club for whites only and our social calendar involves meeting once a week in my house where no alcohol is served in exchange for cash then nobody could shut us down.

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 11:19:46

TurkeyBurgerThing White is not allowed - because that is colour not race. An Italian or a Scots or Welsh club, provided it admits black Italians, etc, is. Similarly a Jamaican club if white people born there can apply. Of course in a genuine club where you have to be proposed and seconded and can be anonymously blackballed (more possible misunderstandings there than I care to think about but you know what I mean!) these laws can never be entirely enforced.

But if people want to meet those of their own race/gender/orientation/colour socially in a private house, obviously there is nothing to be done about it and nor should there be.

mayorquimby The Portmarnock case in the end went in favour of the Golf Club!

And you cannot simply "annul" a tenancy, once granted, because your tenants have become unpopular.

mayorquimby Fri 30-Sep-11 11:27:28

I know. I'm a member.

mayorquimby Fri 30-Sep-11 11:33:09

"And you cannot simply "annul" a tenancy, once granted, because your tenants have become unpopular."

Sorry annul was the wrong words. Depending on the tennancy or agreements for use of a facility, normally related to when it's council buildings but some may rely on codes of conduct, the agreement may be set a side.

Tyr Fri 30-Sep-11 11:33:53

It's not illegal but it is, arguably, a bit neanderthal. Nothing to stop women having private drinking clubs of their own as they probably wouldn't want to join most of the working mens clubs I know of. Most men I know avoid them too.

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 11:36:05

Indeed mayor but it is wrong for councils to use that power to penalise anything which is not unlawful.

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 11:38:23

Congratulations mayor although personally I'm against all golf clubs.

Some years ago the BBC staged The Mikado and rewrote the little-list song to include

^All muggers, joggers, buggers, floggers, persons who play golf . . ." smile

fatlazymummy Fri 30-Sep-11 11:42:03

There's nothing wrong with a mens only social club, any more than there is anything wrong with a woman only gym or race for life, as long as facilities exist for everyone. Some people still choose to socialise with members of their own sex [or culture, religious group etc]. Not everything has to be totally integrated in the interests of equality.

mayorquimby Fri 30-Sep-11 12:30:19

Golfers are possibly the worst humans on the planet. grin

Andrewofgg Fri 30-Sep-11 12:37:07

What do you mean possibly?

OTheHugeWerewolef Fri 30-Sep-11 12:41:21

Can men join the WI?

mayorquimby Fri 30-Sep-11 12:53:01

sad
fine.
definitely.

CustardCake Fri 30-Sep-11 15:23:46

Men are barred from the WI - it is women only

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