Old Images of Chelsea Arts Ball

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Glimpse the past through old images of the Chelsea Arts Ball in years gone by.

Seeing in 1954

As 1953 came to an end, about 5,000 people gathered at the Royal Albert Hall to see in the new year.

Everyone was in fancy dress for the ball organised by the Chelsea Arts Club.

After the balloons are released from the ceiling to be popped, the tableaux comes out for a parade, with 150 Rugby blues keeping the crowds of sozzled people back.

Then one of the floats falls over into the spectators, and suddenly there are arts students down on the ground fighting in a bit to stop the rest of the crowd pulling the floats to bits.

By the end, there were 25 people with minor injuries and one person had to go to hospital.

Looking good for the class of 1954 there!

Chelsea Arts Ball (1954) – British Pathé on YouTube

Rock’n’Roll for 1957

And the cameras are back to capture more mayhem for the Chelsea Arts Ball seeing in 1957.

Again, everyone is in fancy dress, but it’s hard to work out how some of the costumes were influenced by the theme of ‘spring’.

Since the floats have been replaced with people in large costumes, only 80 rugger blues are needed for protection and there’s far less risk of damage and injuries. It’s a very calm year.

The Chelsea Arts Ball (1957) – British Pathé on YouTube

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