Blue Plaque will honour Nelsons contribution to Warwick

Nelson Club's Blue Plaque
Nelson Club's Blue Plaque

The importance of Warwick’s pioneering Nelson family has been marked with the town council’s first Blue Plaque which was unveiled last week.

The Nelson Club now displays the commemorative plaque to highlight the importance of the building and the family on the town’s history after a ceremony last week.

Nelson Club's Blue Plaque

Nelson Club's Blue Plaque

The Blue Plaque scheme was set up to emulate cultural and historical recognition given by National Heritage where people’s importance is recognised through the buildings associated with them.

The Charles Street club is the first to show off the new accolade in what will be the first of many across Warwick.

Generations of the Nelson family have been prominent in the town for over 200 years after George Nelson began making a new kind of gelatine in Leamington in 1837.

He was later credited as the inventor of the world’s first table jelly after the growing firm moved to Emscote Mills in 1841 with a factory which covered over five acres.

George Nelson, originally from Nottingham, died in 1850 and is buried in the churchyard at Old Milverton overlooking Guy’s Cliff House and the Saxon Mill.

He had five sons who survived him and the family has continued to hold a presence in Warwick since. Nelson’s gelatine was in continuous production for almost 135 years.

Nelson Working Mens Club opened in Charles Street in 1883 and continues to run as a community space and member’s club.

Trudy Ashmore, assistant clerk to the town council, said the idea to honour such families and contribution was first put forward by members earlier this year.

She said: “Suggestions came forward from councillors to do something to emulate the National Heritage plaques, and we followed that and hope to continue it.

“This is the first one and the building has great historical importance and interest in Warwick so members felt it was fitting to award this. The club has an impressive history and one which the club and its members are very proud.”

It is hoped that two plaques will be considered each year and plans are already in place for Warwick’s second to be awarded in early 2016.

Historian, Anthony Leahy who has completed extensive research projects on the Nelsons and helped to bring the plaque to the site, welcomed the recognition to help ensure the family’s importance was remembered.

The Warwick Gas Works developer reinstated an Octagonal blue plaque which outlines the historical interest of the building, but is not related to the council scheme.