OUR TEMPLE TODAY
The Caribbean Hindu Cultural Society was the first Hindu organisation in South London for the promotion of Hinduism and Hindu Culture.
Over the years it has evolved as a cohesive society reaching out to the wider community, providing a range of cultural programmes and activities which anyone of any age and cultural background may attend.
In 2000, the name of the Society was changed to “Caribbean Hindu Cultural Society”. The Temple was formally registered with Lambeth Council as a Place of Worship and as a place for the Solemnisation of Marriages on 30th January 2001.
In addition to regular Sunday Havan (four Sundays per month) all Hindu festivals are celebrated with full English translation. The audience is encouraged to participate as and when appropriate under the guidance of the officiating priest.
Membership to the society is open to all sections of the community and provides specific benefits as outlined in its constitution.
OUR TEMPLE'S HISTORY
In May 1959, a group of young immigrants who came to the UK to further their academic and professional studies, held an inaugural meeting to establish a Hindu Organisation in London. This was successfully achieved and they named it the “HINDU DHARMA SABHA”. In 1961, the name was changed to “CARIBBEAN HINDU SOCIETY”.
From 1959 to 1972, Committee Meetings of the group were held in their rented living accommodation whilst AGM’s and major religious festivals such as Divali, were held either at Hammersmith or Lambeth Town Hall.
In 1966 the first Constitution of the Society was prepared and in 1967 it was approved by the Charity Commission and Charity status obtained. Fund raising to purchase a building was seen as a priority and in 1967, chartered flights to Guyana were organised. These proved to be very popular and therefore successful. However, in 1969 this operation had to cease because Charity Law did not permit permanent trading. By this time the management committee had acquired £11,000.00 for the purchase of a building.
In 1972 a bid of £6,500.00 cash was made for the purchase of 16 Ostade Road. The building was last used by the Federation of Boys Scouts Incorporated but when it was obtained, it was in a derelict state and almost completely destroyed by fire some time previously .Refurbishment was started by the members. In 1978 a successful grant application was made to Lambeth Council and in 1982 building works were completed and the Temple became fully operational.
In September 1983, the Singhasan in the upstairs Pooja room was commissioned and Murti Prana Pratishta (installation) performed on 22nd September 1985.
The Singhasan in the main hall was commissioned on 26th August 1987 and Prana Pratishta for the first set of Murtis was performed on 3rd April 2008 and on 15th August 2010 for the second set.