I was researching the history of the British Restaurant in Grosvenor and Hilbert Park, and started to hear stories of bands playing in the hall during the 1980s. “The Rumble Club” were a group of friends who put on various bands in venues around the town, including “Grosvenor”.
In 1992 they found a permanent base at “The Forum” on Tunbridge Wells common. Situated by the old cold baths, the original buildings here were a forge, but the current building was known to most as the toilets for the common, and a brass rubbing centre…
The Forum has now spent twenty years hosting bands and supporting artists, and in May this year won the NME “Best Small Venue for 2012”. So it was surprising when I talked to people involved in the running of the venue that most of the audiences travel to Tunbridge Wells, and not very many locals are popping in. It seems a lot of the locals have this image of loud, grungy music and drunk youngsters. However with a strict over 18s drink policy, and a wide range of acts – we watched a folk duo “Gilmore and Roberts” – there is no reason not to browse the listings, click on the links, and listen to some bands… who may be famous in the future. Muse and Mumford & Sons have both played here….
This weekend there is an “Art Fair” starting at noon Sunday 9th September until 3pm on Tuesday, artists will display their work, films will be shown, and bands in the evenings. The Forum is currently redecorating and also landscaping the garden area. Children under 16 are allowed to attend with an adult, so check out what’s on locally!