No. 770: Rugby Street, WC1
Rugby Street, London, WC1. Photo © Roger Dean 2012
Dinners and Diners: Where and How to Dine in London – Lieut.-Col. Newnham-Davis, 1899:
Chapter 15 – The Trocadero (Shaftesbury Avenue)
An old friend was sending his son, a boy at Harrow, up to London to see a dentist before going, back to school, and asked me if I would mind giving him something to eat, and taking him to a performance of some kind. I said “Yes,” of course; but I felt it was something of an undertaking. When I was at Harrow my ideas of luxury consisted of ices at Fuller’s and sausages and mashed potatoes carried home in a paper bag. I had no idea as to what Jones minor’s tastes might be; but if he was anything like what I was then he would prefer plenty of good food combined with music and gorgeousness and excitement to the most delicate mousse ever made, eaten in philosophic calm. The Trocadero was the place; if he was not impressed by the dinner, by the magnificence of the rooms, by the beautiful staircase, by the music, then I did not know my Harrow boy.
Jones minor arrived at my club at five minutes to the half-past seven, and I saw at once that he was not a young gentleman to be easily impressed. He had on a faultless black short jacket and trousers, a white waistcoat, and a tuberose in his buttonhole. I asked him if he knew the Trocadero, and he said that he had not dined there; but plenty of boys in his house had, and had said that it was jolly good.
When we came to the entrance of the Trocadero, an entrance that always impresses me by its palatial splendour, I pointed out to him the veined marble of the walls [...].