The "Club" is an association/organization, which has different forms in all civilizations, and although the British claim to have introduced it in our subcontinent, it was already here are the Indianized version - "Mehfil". Basically, it was an association - a coming together of the elite class of society - the creme de la creme of their times.
And, one such major club of our beloved city Lucknow in this class is our Oudh Gymkhana Club. Gymkhana is actually a mere derivation of "Ghendkhana" where damsels used to play ball game with huge marigold flowers popularly called "Ghenda" (Merigold Flower).
The club was basically meant for tennis player & its purpose was to promote sports. Initially only tennis players were given membership. It had 16 tennis courts, which would also fall short sometimes. The club hosted a lot of tennis matches and hosted major tennis events like National & International level champion-ships and Davis Cup. Many of the renowned tennis players like Elee Bob, Tilden, D.N. Capoor, Ghaus Mohammed, Ramanathan Krishnan, Amritraj Brothers & Leander Paes have sweated it out on the courts of this club.
Later, Table Tennis & Billiards were also introduced. The club was run strictly according to rules & regulations. Though the members were sportsman the club hosted other social activities also like ball dances etc. The club had a varied menu with varieties of vegetarian dishes to non-vegetarian dishes.
Slowly, over the years, the club started changing its colour, look, and its activities. Its activities are now channeled for entertainment along with sports facility like Tennis, Billiards, Table Tennis and Cards. It is now frequented by families and gained a new respectability. The focus of club's main activities now is family entertainment and recently the club has hosted many entertainment programmes for its member, which were grand success.