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Jack Profumo

Jack John Profumo Icon of Toynbee HallJohn Profumo - Jack as he was know to his friends - came to Toynbee Hall as a volunteer in 1963 and continued until his death on 9 March 2006; by far the longest serving volunteer. During his time here, he endeared himself to many, many people, raised funds for numerous projects and left his indelible mark on the organisation.He used his existing connections and created new networks to bring in funds that enabled Toynbee Hall to develop and grow over the last forty years.

All of us who knew him at Toynbee Hall will never forget what a truly kind, inspirational and enterprising man he was.

Jack Profumo's achievements

Jack came to Toynbee Hall as a volunteer in 1963. Initially undertaking fairly menial tasks, he then became involved in fundraising and succeeded in turning round the poor financial situation that Toynbee Hall was in at the time.

  • Work began on the new Gatehouse building to provide residential accommodation in July 1965. Harold Wilson turned the first sod. The building was completed in March 1967. Officially opened by Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Michael Ramsey.
  • Child Poverty Action Group was established in 1965.
  • Setting up of Workers’ Education Centre in 1965 for Asian and African immigrants.
  • In 1967 started appeal for modernising the buildings on Toynbee Hall site.
  • It was John Profumo’s idea that Attlee House be built on the site of the old library as a memorial to Clement Attlee.
  • In 1968 John Profumo became a visitor at Grendon Psychiatric Prison, creating a link between Toynbee Hall and former inmates at Grendon.
  • The Special Families Centre for the Mentally Handicapped opened in Sunley House in 1974.
  • In 1975 John Profumo was awarded the CBE for his charity work.
  • A Radio Appeal of 1978 brought in a phenomenal £35,000 for Toynbee Hall.
  • In late 1970s and early 1980s, John Profumo took on more responsibilities on Toynbee Hall Council. By 1981 he was Deputy Chair of Council; in 1982, following the death of Viscount Blakenham, he became Chairman.
  • John Profumo became Chairman of Toynbee Hall in 1982. In 1992 John Profumo was made President.