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However, in those days, membership of such clubs was known to be confined exclusively to ' Gentlemen Amateurs', although it seems that some members didn't always behave like gentlemen.

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This may well have owed something to our custom in those days of forming groups to go on tour at weekends and in the holidays to compete in various summer athletics meetings around the country.

The formation of clubs, for adults, for the specific purpose of promoting recreational and competitive amateur athletics was a new development in the sports world of the mid-19th century.

However, these clubs did not just appear out of thin air.

At this time, sports meetings with running, jumping and throwing events were not uncommon in schools, university colleges and even military establishments.

The mansion and the grounds (from 1965 called ' Belair' Park) were sited on the corner of Gallery Road, Dulwich, and Thurlow Park Road that forms part of what is now the A205 South Circular Road.

In those early days of organised athletics our members, though few in number, soon gained the soubriquet of the "Irrepressibles" due to their habit of winning 1st, 2nd or 3rd place prizes in almost every track & field open meeting in the 1870s.

In 1873, our active membership had risen to 108 members.

Our first cross country (CC) training-run was described by the South London Chronicle as the "Inauguration of a New Pack (i.e. This true beginning for SLH took place on January 13th, 1872, in the form of a ' Hare & Hounds' run, in which. Beaumont Kent acted as the ' Hare' and started at 3.45pm in the direction of Dulwich, whilst the ' Hounds' (all the other runners) including Charles Larrette & J.

However, the PAAC Committee felt that this was too egotistical and flamboyant for their fledgling club, and rejected his demands.

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