The Club was founded in 1884, just seven years after the first Wimbledon Championships were held. There are few records remaining from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, but by the mid-1920s it was thriving. There were already 12 courts (all with hard surfaces) and a full-time caretaker called Mr Zilwood. He lived in one of the Club’s cottages with his daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter. In the summer, Zilwood’s daughter used to prepare refreshments for the members. For a shilling you could buy a cup of tea, two biscuits and a rock cake. How times have changed.
Between the wars, most Club members were male. There were a few female players who used to enjoy a hit in the afternoons, but they were expected to make themselves scarce in the mornings and evenings when the men took over.
Zilwood died around the time of the outbreak of the Second World War and was succeeded by a Mr Mann who also worked as an air raid warden. Since the Club was on top of Campden Hill, and occupying the highest ground in the immediate area, during the War an anti-aircraft gun was stationed on one of the tennis courts. Play continued around this gun station.
Some time after the War it was decided to employ a full-time manager and to modernise the Club buildings. Various improvements were made over the course of the next few decades.
Finally, between 2001 and 2002, the Club was extensively refurbished and the 12 outdoor courts were turned into six indoor and six outdoor courts. The Club now boasts some of the best tennis club facilities in London.