Social Clubs

Image Unable to open a social club at the MCG itself, Melbourne admitted that they were losing out compared to other clubs by not having a social club and planned their own venue in 1983 with the $300,000 purchase of two terrace houses in Jolimont. $13,000 of the price was raised by wealthy spectators at a gala dinner.

One of the houses later became club headquarters when they were deemed too small for a licensed venue. An attempt to buy a larger building on Jolimont Street failed and the State Government's refusal to allow poker machines in Victoria meant that the plan for a social club was put on hold. The other house was sold. In 1991 poker machines were legalised and there was speculation that the Demons would move into VFL House when the league shifted into new premises in the MCG. The move didn't eventuate, with the club citing difficulties in getting a liquor licence for a residential area and a lack of parking, leaving Melbourne as the only side other than Fitzroy without a social club.

In 1992, Melbourne proposed an arrangement with the management of the National Tennis Centre to lease land for a $5 million social and administrative complex. The Tennis Centre Trust rejected the deal, leaving the Demons with the rights to 105 poker machines but nowhere to put them.

The club operated venues at the Bentleigh Club and Leighoak. Leighoak opened in 1995 after $500,000 of renovations and the installation of 100 poker machines, it was sold to the Moonee Valley Racing Club for $10,650,000 in 2018.

A social club and poker machine was planned for Fawkner in 2000, but after $2.5 million had been invested in it the State Government announced that they were banning pokie licences in several council areas including Darebin.

In 2012 the Melbourne Football Club and Bentleigh Club merged. In 2018 a decision was made to remove poker machines from Bentleigh, and in June 2021 Melbourne announced it would sell the Bentleigh Club and their remaining poker machine licences in 2022, leaving it with no licensed premises.

Age - 15/09/1983
Age - 30/11/1983
Age - 04/10/1985
Age - 04/12/1991
Age - 02/02/1992
Age - 16/08/1992
Age - 11/12/1994

Created by Supermercado. Last Modification: Thursday 28 September 2023 13:42:09 AEST by Supermercado. (Version 16)

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