The Canterbury Club was established in 1872 by a group of twenty prominent Christchurch businessmen. These gentlemen founded the Club to provide a city haven, a private venue where they could meet, discuss business affairs, and socialise.
The first chairman of the Canterbury Club was William Montgomery, a timber merchant and education administrator. In 1872, under his chairmanship, tenders were called for a property on which to build a clubhouse. Twelve sites were considered – including the site of the now-demolished Clarendon Towers – before the clubhouse was built in its current location at 129 Cambridge Terrace. The clubhouse, designed by Frederick Strouts and built by Daniel Reese, is recognised as an historically important heritage landmark building. It was fully restored following the Christchurch earthquakes, and members enjoy its heritage features today.
The club first welcomed female guests in 1894 and held its first ‘Ladies Dining Night’ in 1964. Membership was opened to women in 2002, and today the club is proud to have a significant and active female membership.
The club is proud of its heritage and is indebted to those members who have maintained the traditions, integrity and fellowship that formed the cornerstone of its foundation.