Chairman’s Newsletter October 2019

Dear Members,

Image of Kay on site
Kay on site

I hope you enjoyed your summer! As you know, the club closed for refurbishment at the end of May and should have re-opened at the beginning of September. But things changed and instead of just a refurb, we are actually getting a new club!

As you will see from the photos recording the ongoing work published on this web site the club has more or less been ‘gutted.’   We will have a completely new Kitchen; a new, extended Bar; a smaller Office to accommodate a wider entrance to the Bar and lift exit; a lift from the foyer to Office level and a small stair lift for the last few steps to the Bar. In the Concert Hall we shall have a new extended stage area and new Audio Visual, lighting and sound systems. Other lovely changes include new flooring and panelling. The whole club has been re-wired and other issues such as water intakes rationalised. All our supporting beams have been checked and steel supports especially designed to fit the lift into our small space. The builders have gone back to the original brickwork to ensure we will have a sturdy club that will last another 70 years.

We do have excellent builders, electricians, engineers and consultants working for us and they are paying great attention to detail. The works really are complex! The cost has escalated but, in the scheme of things and percentage wise to what the building is worth, it represents great value. We have also added considerable value to the building. All costs have been carefully monitored and we expect the final expenditure on this project to be near £670,000.

When dear Jack Warner first found our building and Rank was our guarantor for the Mortgage, our members contributed monies and eventually the mortgage was repaid, so that we now own the freehold of the building. Well, dear members, it seems history is repeating itself. As I said at the AGM last March, we need the members to contribute to replenish our reserves to take this unique Club into the future! If our 1,000 members donated £100 each… WOW! Obviously we realise and appreciate that many of our members aren’t in that financial position but ANY contribution, however small, will be gratefully received. We are thrilled that some members have already contributed and we have thanked them.

The Committee suggested that some members may wish to club together to buy individual items e.g. a Chandelier, Stage Curtains, Lighting equipment, the small chair lift, Bar Furniture. Even some wonderfully generous member – The lift! Miracles do happen!! For any more information just contact myself or Malcolm or just send your contribution to the Club.

The Lift has now been installed and is currently being fitted out and tested. It is a small platform lift which will carry one or, at most, 2 people. The maximum weight is 250 kilos (38 stone in old money.) BUT YOU MUST KEEP YOUR FINGER ON THE BUTTON to ascend and descend. It is intended mainly for members who have difficulty in climbing stairs and our more able bodied members should leave it available for them. It will take you up to the office/green room level and then there will be a small Stannah Stair Lift to take you up to the bar. It will not be used to carry barrels up to the bar area. Hooray! It’s all very exciting.

The builders have said that they should be finished by the end of October. The Bar will be the final area to be completed. Initially we will be using the old bar furniture until we have had time to see the finished area and measure up properly. When the Club is handed back we have to bring everything out of two large storage units back to the Club. Please check back to the web site to get the actual first day we re-open.

I must thank all of our regular 40/50 members who have supported the Monday night concerts at the Water Rats Pub during the closure. Great nights full of fun and laughter, giving the opportunity to keep members personally updated on the building progress. We expect our first MONDAY NIGHT at our new Club will be 11th November, then every Monday as usual. Our Grand Opening Night with Dinner, Archive DVD, Music/Cabaret, along with our Architects and Builders will be 22nd November. Should demand be such, we will add extra opening evenings.

I want to especially thanks, Ron Wallace, Chris Hare and Jonathon Brosnon who have attended as many of the regular site meetings with me as they could and Judith Quiney who sorted out the IT and phone links during the closure along with advice on the consultant’s colour schemes and fitments. Indeed, I thank ALL the Committee for their constant support and help. A vote of thanks also to Malcolm and Val, who were uprooted to the fourth floor.

The Committee and myself thank you for all your support and patience. A new era for the CAA dawns!

Thank You


Chairman’s Newsletter August 2019

Kay Carman

Hello dear Members,

I hope you are enjoying the summer!

As you know the club is closed now for refurbishment and should have been open again at the beginning of September.

But actually things have changed & instead of just a refurb we are actually going to have a new Club!!!

As you will see from the photos on the Website, the club has more or less been ‘gutted ‘. Please bear in mind these were taken in mid-June and things have moved on dramatically. We are having a complete new Kitchen; a new extended Bar; a smaller office to accommodate a wider entrance to the bar and lift exit; a lift from the foyer up to the office level and a small stair lift up to the Bar. In the Concert Hall we will have a new extended stage area and brand new AV and lighting, all of this together with other interesting changes including new floor and panelling. The whole club has been rewired and other issues such as water intakes rationalised.

We have excellent builders/electricians & consultants etc working for us and they are paying great attention to detail. The works really are complex! The builders have gone back to the brickwork to give us a new sturdy club that will last at least another 50 years. All our supporting beams have been checked and steel supports designed especially for the lift.

Yes the cost has escalated but, in the scheme of things and percentage wise to what our building is worth plus the value we will add to the building, it is worth it. All costs have been closely monitored and are within our overall target and contingency budgets.

When dear Jack Warner first found our building & Rank was our guarantor for the Mortgage, all the members contributed monies & eventually they paid off the Mortgage so that we own the freehold of the club!

Dear members, it seems history is repeating itself. As I said at our AGM in March this year we need the members to contribute to take this club into the future! As I said if our 1000 members donated £100 each wow! Obviously many cannot afford that which is absolutely understandable, but any donation however small will be gratefully received by us to help the future of our club.

It has been suggested that some club together & buy individual items. So I have asked the Architects to send us a list of prices of things that we can look at. We will put it on the website and also in the post with your individual Newsletters. It is an exciting time! We will be having ‘fundraisers’ for a few years to build up our coffers again! Some millionaire might donate the lift or the sound system! Any good suggestions are very welcome. The whole Committee are thinking about ways to raise money.

This is just an interim Newsletter to let you know how we are progressing. I will let you know how we progress in a couple of weeks again when we know the FINAL COST!!!!

Look out for your Newsletter in the post. Malcolm& Val will be addressing the envelopes as I write!!!

Love & thanks to you all for your support & patience at this momentous time in our Club’s History. 

KAY CARMAN (Chairman)

Chairman’s Report ~ March 2019

Kay Carman

The AGM in March 2018 was well attended and we had some lively discussions. This present committee have been wonderful this year and I want to thank them ALL for their continued help and support. All our office suites are solidly occupied.

One of the rents is up for review in September. We have had an ‘interesting‘ year with the Adventure Bar, when suddenly their outside décor became frighteningly ‘floral’ without seeking our permission! But after a long period, during which I decided to involve our magnificent solicitors, it is all sorted out along with a large increase in rent. I thank the committee for supporting me in this.

Our Social Functions continue to be a huge success and often sell out quickly. We are always open to new ideas so if you have any please send a letter to us, email or contact us through the web site. Sally and her catering team led by Syed always provide excellent meals at the functions. Carlos and Syed cater for lunchtime customers.

We thank our bar staff Candice and Chris. Saturday evening opening seems to be picking up so we will be continuing it until our refurbishment closure. Thanks to Liam our stage manager who often works above and beyond the call of duty. Also to the furniture moving heroes on Mondays and at functions. And to others who help with tickets and filling envelopes when required.

Grateful thanks to Malcolm who mans the office and Val his assistant. They come to work ‘through hell and high water’ and almost never have a day off sick! Real showbiz troupers. Thank you.

Thanks must go to the Benevolent Fund Trustees who work quietly and confidentially on your behalf. If any ‘A’ members are in need please contact them and if any other members need help, please contact myself or a Committee member because we have the Samaritan Fund which helps and also provides taxis for our less able members.

Finally, an exciting time is approaching! This Committee wants to future proof our wonderful club for the young and not so young for many years to come. So, because of the need for complete rewiring, we will be doing a major refurbishment as well, including the installation of a small platform lift. It will be a lengthy and costly undertaking, but our finances are in excellent order and we have a budget. So please embrace this period of our club.

We have an excellent firm of Architects and they have good consultants and builders. We are on board with every decision and nothing will be done without our agreement. The Committee and I have put a lot of time and effort into this project because we love the club so much. I am very proud and honoured to have been your Chairman again. We need to protect this unique club well into the future. My love and thanks to you all for your support.


Chairman’s Letter November 2018

Kay Carman

Hello Everyone

Doesn’t time fly! Nearly Christmas already! We have had a fabulous summer but, it is time now for scarves, gloves and boots.

At the AGM, we talked about a huge refurbishment of the Club because it needs completely re-wiring, updating and the installation of a lift.

To this end, the committee narrowed down a list of Architects to 3, who came along in September and gave us ‘presentations’ of their vision of the Club. At this moment of writing we have not chosen ‘the one’ yet, but I will say that we will hopefully have a lift installed during Autumn 2019. At last. Hooray!!

Of course, all of this refurbishment will be expensive and we will have to close the Club for a while. We are looking at alternative venues and at keeping disruption to a minimum and we will discuss it at next year’s AGM.

This is an exciting time for the Club! Myself and the Committee are looking to future proof the Club for many, many years to come. And to make it more appealing to young and old alike. Yes, an exciting time.

The Committee feel that the Green Room can be used as a bar ‘overflow’ on function evenings and when we have large numbers of people attending for various reasons. We have used it for Social Functions ‘overflow’ for a while now. It is normally only required for an hour, whilst waiting for the function/meeting to begin. So please feel free to move in there if you cannot find a seat in the bar on an evening.

I wish you all a wonderful festive season, wherever you are and whatever you are doing! On stage or off. Please support our wonderful Strictly Sparkling Annual Ball on Sunday 24th March 2019 at the Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington. It will be a very happy evening full of fun.

Much Love….Ho! Ho! Ho! ….Kay (Your Chairman)

Chairman’s Letter – July 2018

Kay Carman 2018 Ball Photo
Kay Carman

Hello everyone. I hope you are enjoying the gorgeous weather!

I am honoured that the Committee have elected me your Chairman once again. You know that I will work 100% plus for you, the members and the club as a whole. I joined this wonderful club in 1979 when I was ‘starting out’ in showbusiness, so you realise why it means so much to me!

We’re having another good year. The new tenants on the 4th floor are happily settled in and have added BT fibre, which we will be able to use once we are technically re-organised. This re-organisation is happening too slowly for us. We are awaiting Raffingers report on exactly everything that we need. Then we can put things into motion! We have chosen three architects to come and view the Hall/Kitchen Reception area etc, with a view to total refurbishment of areas in the hope of installing a viable lift up to the bar. Many of you who have difficulty with mobility are now taking advantage of the taxi rides we are offering you. Please contact me if you require one.

Some of you have been asking about opening on Saturday, as you are in town shopping or at a show and it would be nice to pop into the club on an evening to have a drink. So, we are going to experiment with opening on the LAST Saturday of every month from 5pm to 11.30pm. Starting from Saturday 29th September. This will be expensive in wages etc, so we will ask for a £5 admission donation from each guest as we have great value drinks in the bar. (Members are obviously free as usual.)

Thank you for your support at our Social Functions. We have some great ones coming up and we hope to have a couple of afternoon ones in the September to December season. So, look out for those on the notice board and web site. I will also phone around our ‘regulars’ if anything ’comes up.’

Have a wonderful summer break, a successful autumn season and keep smiling!!

Much love to you all.

Kay (Your Chairman)

P.S. I am thrilled to tell you that we now have “THE CAA ROOM” at Brinsworth House, The Royal Variety Charity Home in Twickenham. Many of our members go there for respite and indeed we have one member at the moment who is a permanent resident. So thank you all at the AGM for agreeing to our donation for this new en suite room. We will also help with its maintenance. It is a lovely large room on the first floor, overlooking a beautiful Lilac tree. We took the money for the room from our Samaritan Fund because it is for the benefit of ALL of our members.

Thank you all, once again – Much Love, Kay xxx

Newsletter November 2017


Kay Carman
Kay Carman

Hello Everyone

Hope you had a good summer! Working or relaxing!

During the 3-week closure, our workmen have been very busy, completely gutting the Ladies Toilets and Dressing Room and the Gentlemen’s Dressing Room. Thus, giving us a whole bright new “look”. Very theatrical!! (I wanted us to have theatre styled Dressing Rooms!) All expensive but worth it!! I hope you agree. My special thanks to Deputy Chair, Judith Quiney for all her help and Ron and Malcolm.

The German firm who were tenants in the 4th floor office suite unfortunately left us earlier this year. This gave us the opportunity to refurbish that area in the hope that we can attract a new tenant in this competitive market. Our Property agent has had viewings from prospective firms but so far, no letting of the space.

Another of the new Social Events for this year, the play reading of “Separate Tables”, in August, was a huge success. Thanks to our member Hugh Futcher. I bought 4 small red tables to use that night and they looked so good we have bought another eight to use on Jazz and Cabaret evenings to give the hall a new, intimate look.

The Annual Ball will take place on Sunday March 18th. Once again at the Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington High Street. Sparkling reception at 5.00 p.m. Dinner at 6.00 p.m. and Carriages at 11.15 p.m. We have a wonderful Cabaret, Dancing to a live band and Disco section. A truly fun, happy evening. So why not bring your friends and book a whole table. Members £60, Guests £70.

The Website is up and running now so take a look at it at If you have any news then let us know and we can have a rolling page for members news. All the contact details are on there. Our thanks to Paul Scudder for setting it up and Chris Hare for editing.

Just a reminder about the Taxi rides on offer to our less mobile members who want to visit the club. 3 or 4 of you have already made use of it. So, don’t be shy! We would love to see you back at the club. You have all contributed so much over the years. Just contact myself or Malcolm. Also, if you know of any member who may need help or care please let any of the Committee know, because we have the Samaritan and Benevolent funds to help you. Sadly, we have lost 4 of our long-standing members recently. 50 years some of them have been ‘A’ performing members. We are looking at ways to help, so watch this space!

I cannot believe it but Christmas season will soon be upon us, when many of our members are appearing in Pantomimes, Christmas Shows, Plays, Concerts and Cabarets. Also, our members who are technical and Front of House staff. We are all ‘cogs’ in the huge wheel of Showbusiness. We will also be distributing our Christmas Hampers in December. Hoping to surprise and brighten up some of our members.I wish all of you a very Happy and Successful Festive Season.

Love Kay x



5.00 p.m. Sparkling Reception for 6.00 p.m. Dinner



Special Cabaret, Band and wonderful food.

MEMBERS £60.00, GUESTS £70.00


Don’t leave it too long to book. It is going to be a great evening.


If you would like to serve on the General Committee for the year 2018/2019 and have paid two full years’ subscriptions, please collect a Nomination Form from the office. Completed forms must be signed by a proposer and seconder and returned before 1st February 2018. To be eligible for election, nominees must have paid their subscription for 2018. Nominees are invited to write a brief statement (50 words maximum) in support of their nomination for Committee and these must be sent to the office at the same time as the Nomination Forms in order to get them printed in time to go out with the AGM papers at the beginning of March.

The following members have “taken their final curtain” since the last Newsletter. They are: –

John Dalby ‘A’ July

Yvonne Bouffler ‘A’ July

Audrey Maye ‘A’ September

Joy Francois ‘A’ September


Marty Swift ‘A’ July

Avril Ellis ‘A’ August

Johnny Maxim ‘A’ July


The club will close for Christmas after trading on Thursday 21st December 2017 Re-Opening after the festivities on Wednesday3rd January 2018

Put the dates in your diary, so as not to be disappointed



Come along and remember your favourite stars, Doris Day, Judy Garland, Mario Lanza, Marlene Dietrich, Frank Sinatra, Gracie Fields, Matt Monroe,Howard Keel, Deanna Durbin, Elvis Presley and many more.Sing along, dance along and enjoy a nostalgic night

3 Course Meal – 7.00 for 7.15 p.m. – Members: £20, Guests: £23


Please make all cheques payable to “The Concert Artistes’ Association”. You may pay your subscription and Christmas Draw on the same cheque but please write separate cheques for the 100 Club, Annual Ball and all other payments.

Please do not staple cheques to forms or send post-dated cheques.

We would prefer monies to be sent as there is less risk of them being unrecorded, but, if you really cannot trust the post, please come and see us before the office closes at 5-00 p.m. Please do not bring your money in loose. Always put it in a clearly labelled envelope (a recycled one will suffice) together with the relevant form or slip carefully completed. Then, if you arrive out of office hours, you can post ready prepared envelopes through the office letterbox to be dealt with the following morning.


Kay Carman – is appearing in “Down Memory Lane” Queen’s Theatre Foyer Show on Wednesday 1st November at 2.30 p.m. and in Mickie Driver’s Christmas Party Show at Westcliff-on-Sea and Wood Green from Monday 20th November until Friday 15th December. Also, the January Music Hall Show at the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch.

Valerie Leon – “Upfront with Valerie Leon” will be at Live at Zedal, 20 Sherwood Street, Soho on Thursday 9th November at 7.00 p.m. With the help of little more than a magnum of champagne, Valerie takes you through her life both on and off the screen.

Martin Milnes – in June appeared at “West End Live” with his musical partner Dominic Ferris. Martin & Dominic went on to appear at the Lincoln Centre Rose Theatre in New York on 17th October.

Martin Wimbush – Martin has just finished appearing in his one-man show “A Meeting of Minds” at the Canterbury Festival with further venues to be considered.


Our Christmas draw raises funds for the Club and gives you, the members, the chance of winning extra goodies for Christmas. At only £1 a ticket or £5 for the book of tickets, you have a good chance of winning our first prize of £300 in cash, or other desirable treats and gifts.


1st Prize: £300 cash

2nd Prize: £150 cash

3rd Prize: £100 of Theatre Vouchers

4th Prize: £50 of Marks & Spencer Vouchers

Plus 50 other prizes of wines, spirits, gifts etc.

One book containing 5 tickets is enclosed with your Newsletter and extra books are available from the office. Please send counterfoils and cheques made payable to the Concert Artistes’ Association (which can include your subscription) to arrive by 6.00 p.m. on the 18th December 2017.


Letter from the Chairman

Kay Carman
Kay Carman

Dear Members,

The Club for Acts and Actors website

At last!!! Open the champagne and dance on the tables! We have our new website.

Grateful thanks to Judith Quiney (Deputy Chair) who over a long period of time has managed to extricate us from previous website arrangements and promises, that, despite best efforts, were sadly never properly fulfilled to our satisfaction.

Many Thanks to our new web site manager Paul Scudder, who eased us painlessly through the technical complexities of the changeover and designed and set up the new site in just three weeks from his appointment. Paul really is an expert in this field and we will see constant updates and many improvements to the site in the coming weeks. Also thanks go to committee member Chris Hare who recommended Paul and has taken on the task of web site editor.

Please send any news items or photos for possible inclusion to Chris at [email protected] as he is looking to establish a rolling news and substantial archive section. There is also a comments section on the site if you wish to give us any feedback.

So, as our dear Pamela Cundell would say, “It’s onwards and upwards Darlings!”

Love to you all,

Kay Carman.

ps. Progress on the development of the website can be monitored here.

Newsletter July 2017


Anita Dobson
Anita Dobson

Hi Everyone

I am writing my first letter as President of the CAA, how exciting for me!   I think the club is just terrific, and one of the reasons I accepted is because you are all such a happy bunch and I am very proud to be one of you.

My pal, Carol Ball brought me along to try to teach me to Tap Dance!! Hubby popped into watch and we all ended up in the bar having a lovely time.   We ended up listening to a young Flamenco guitarist! Hubby was thrilled.

It is difficult to be around as much as I would like, but I will do my best!   Am off to do bits of work now and then, as we all are, but will see you whenever possible.

Take care of yourselves and keep smiling.

Laugh every day and see you soon.

Love Anita xxxx




The club will be closed for three weeks this year, owing to extra work being carried out, the Ladies Toilets and Dressing Room will be given a makeover as will the Gents Dressing Room, so it will take a little longer to complete.

We will be closing after business, 11.30 p.m. on Friday 11th August and re-opening on Monday 4th September at 9.30 a.m.

So, the club will be closed from Monday 14th August until Monday 4th September entirely

This is also to enable routine maintenance work, cleaning etc. to be carried out and for Bar and Kitchen staff to take a well-earned holiday. The office staff will however be on hand to answer any telephone enquiries that you may have.

We wish you all happy summer holidays and look forward to seeing you back here refreshed when we re-open.



Kay Carman
Kay Carman

Hello Everyone

I am honoured that the Committee have elected me as your Chairman again. You know I will always work 100% to keep the aims of the club safe and see it progress well into the future. I also welcome our gorgeous new President, Anita Dobson.

This is our 120th year and the events we have had so far have all been a huge success.   The idea is to attract more of you lovely members to come in and support your club. If you have any new ideas please let me know.

It is wonderful to see so many of you supporting the functions, particularly the “C” and Lunchtime Members who have been attending lately. They are happy evenings full of fun and laughter. So far, this year we have had a “Burns Night”, 2 Burlesque nights (both sold out) ABBA Tribute, Elvis Tribute (the club was rocking on these nights!) Afternoon film show and tea. We started a regular monthly Jazz Evening with top class musicians. The Celebratory Ball at the Royal Garden Hotel in March was a huge success.

In the pipeline, we have a “Magic of the Movies” evening with Carol Anne Wells presenting film clips and the well-known music and songs from your favourite movies. Miss Hope Springs will be presenting her “unique” Cabaret Show on Friday 15th September. Blues Brothers Tribute in October and many more. I want the functions to appeal to as many of our members as possible. We are the Club for Acts and Actors so we need the Actors to feel part of this club as well. We are all performers! We must embrace everyone EQUALLY if this great club is to progress for many more years to come. To that end, Hugh Futcher is introducing Play Reading evenings.   To test the water the first one, “Separate Tables” will take place on Thursday 10th August. (See the booking slips)

This year I personally would like to stress our care of our long-standing members, who have helped make the club the success it is! Many are now approaching their 80’s, 90’s and even 100’s!!! Some have mobility problems and cannot attend the club as regularly as they would like. So, the Committee have discussed and agreed that we will offer them 4 return Taxi journeys a year. So that we do not lose touch with them and return some of the love and care that they have given the club over many years that they have been members. Whatever category we are all equal in this club.   It is our 120 years and we must remember why the club was formed and all our ideals.

A new 5-year lease has been signed for one of our office suites with a good increased rental charge and our agents are currently looking for a new tenant for the 4th floor suite.

We are closed for 3 weeks this Summer (closed from 11.30 p.m. Friday 11th August. Re-open Monday 4th September) for complete refurbishment of the Ladies Toilets and Dressing Room and the Gentlemen Artistes Dressing Room plus some re-wiring in the hall.

I hope you all have an enjoyable Summer break and return with renewed vigour to support this wonderful club.

Love to you all      



The following members have “taken their final curtain” since the last Newsletter. They are: –

John Bull ‘A’  July 2016

Barbara Sumner ‘A’ April 2017

Norma Dunbar ‘A’  June 2017

Bettina Raymond ‘A’  June 2017


Paul Arden-Griffith – In addition to his Musical Director commitment to London based Intimate Opera Group this summer, PAG (Paul Arden-Griffith) will also be singing in a charity fund-raising “Midsummer Serenade” concert (17/6/170 in Tadworth alongside David Carter, Sandra Gayer and a host of performers including the Laird Academy of Dance and Drama. Later in the summer he will be returning to Holland to conduct Masterclasses for several choirs and singers in The Hague.   October 7th will see PAG back at the CAA with

Pamela Smith for their final 2017 singers’ Masterclass.   As on previous occasions CAA members are cordially invited to attend this class free of charge.

Kay CarmanKay Carman was thrilled to take part in the 100th Birthday Tribute Show to Dame Vera Lynn at the London Palladium in the presence of H. M. The Queen.   It was a fantastic show. Kay has a busy time coming up in June and July, World War 1 and 11 shows in Dublin, then Trowbridge Wiltshire.

Also, “The Fabulous 50’s Show” in Westcliff and Wood Green. Then “Down Memory Lane” shows at the

Queens Theatre Hornchurch, June 14th, September 6th, October 4th and November 1st (with David Carter).

And mid-November until December 16th with Mickie Driver’s Christmas Show.

Katie Milton – Will be appearing at the Queens Theatre Hornchurch on Wednesday 21st July for a Music Hall Evening.

Shannon Rewcroft – Will be in the National Tour of “Wait Until Dark” with the Original Theatre Company

August to December.   Coming to the Richmond Theatre 5th – 9th September.

Ruth Silvestre – “BEFORE THE SUNFLOWERS” is Ruth Silvestre’s latest book. Beginning with her wartime childhood, it covers her career in West End Theatre and Cabaret as well as the adventures and delights of later life. Available from Amazon or, by arrangement, from the club. Enjoy!



The Club for Acts & Actors

Patrons ~ Barry Cryer OBE ~ Dame Judi Dench ~ The RT Hon. Lord Moore