Jellicoe 100…Celebrations!

Jellicoe 100 on December the 1st was an important centenary and a tribute to Rob Inglis, as well as a fundraiser for our museum and a great catch up with old friends.

Actor Debbie Radcliffe, who played Edith Neville and other roles

100 years ago radical priest Father Basil Jellicoe arrived in Somers Town and transformed the area, inspiring the St Pancras Housing movement, clearing slums and building community.

On the 1st December 2021 we celebrated this centenary at the St Pancras Old Church with live theatre telling the story. The evening included performances from some of the cast of Rob Inglis’ ‘Jellicoe the Musical’, and others with a strong affinity to Somers Town, such as star of TV and stage Cleo Sylvestre, with her band Honey B Mama & Friends and African Drumming from Nkabom.

Cleo Sylvestre of Honey B Mama performed blues songs with a Somers Town twist.

Father Basil Jellicoe arrived in Somers Town in 1922 from the Oxford Magdalen mission. Shocked by the slum conditions he found, he pioneered an innovative early housing project, St Pancras Housing Improvement Society, which became the model for other housing associations.

Jellicoe and the key figures of the Housing Society ensured the housing was functional, but also emphasised community: ‘Housing is not enough‘ was a guiding spirit. For example, Jellicoe, though himself abstemious, took on a landlord role in a local pub; as that was where his community were.

Alongside Edith Neville and Irene Barclay, Jellicoe and his group created a social housing legacy that formed modern Somers Town.

Rob Wickham, now Bishop of Edmonton and Father Pashcal Worton, who played Jellicoe
Nkabom African Drummers

The performance was adapted from 2003’s ‘Jellicoe the Musical‘ and some original cast took part, including Debbie Radcliffe and Rob Wickham. The original was directed and produced by the actor/director and Rob Inglis, who passed away this year, 2021.

It truly was a magical night and we were overwhelmed with the support we received and the positive feedback we received from those who attended the event. And the donations we received will help us carry out much-needed repairs!

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