It was built by public subscription, but was very small as an auditorium and failed within 20 years. By 1858 the building had become a newpspaper reading room and lecture hall. It was damaged by a bomb blast in World War II, and the shell of the building was eventually bought by the Blackheath Preservation Trust, and rebuilt in 1975, retaining some of the original walls and shape.
Information from Blackheath Archive.
Credit for this entry to: Alan Patient of www.plaquesoflondon.co.uk