Kirkdale Community Centre, built in 1886, was formerly known as Gordon Working Men Institute. It is thought to be Britain’s earliest surviving purpose built Kid’s Club and set the standard for a lot of clubs that followed it. The building was Initiated and erected at a cost of fifty thousand pounds by William Cliff, a Liverpool merchant, as a memorial to his oldest son who died at 11 years of age group in 1853. The venue so named to commemorate and perpetuate the memory of Major Charles Gordon, who was killed in battle at Khartoum in 1885. The ethos of the building was and still is to promote educational, recreational and sporting facilities to poor and deprived boys of Liverpool and in so helping them to live ‘happy and useful lives’. This is as such evident from a comprehensive marble plaque in the vestibule.
The venue closed in 1995 but was revived in 2000 by a local action group. A grant from the European Regional Development Fund was provided and an intensive comprehensive restoration program was put into place to repair of many of the interior features.
The Institute was created by Liverpool architect with a Gothic style. The windows have elliptical heads with impaired tracery in the tympana and small-paned casements.