This elegant townhouse overlooking Soho Square is said to be the location from which Dickens wrote a part of A Tale of Two Cities. However, with walls lined with Tracey Emin, Jeff Koons and Chris Levine works, signs of nostalgia are scarce. Provoking and questioning, breaking barriers and reinventing conceptions of what a members club should be about, the House of St Barnabas seeks to combine ethics and luxury. The fees paid by members will pay for the training and work experience of a group of homeless people who are actively trying to get off the streets and back into work. Members’ fees will pay for their training in the Employment Academy on the top floor of the building, before they take a trip downstairs to be front of house, kitchen porters or waiting staff. You don’t have to be a member to get in on the action either. An ongoing Culture Series, hosted in the building’s beautiful chapel, has been conceived as a programme of events that will champion emerging talent in everything from modern classical music to insightful talks on modern Britain in partnership with contemporary culture denizens BUG. Prepare to be stirred and a little shaken.
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