First and foremost if you are in a band and you are looking for a gig do NOT ring - send an e-mail with details.
If you are appearing at The "Tropic at Ruislip" - here are a few snippets of information you might find handy to know.
First and foremost it is in the club part of Wealdstone
Football Club's ground - they only took it over in 2008, prior to that it was
the home ground of Ruislip Manor FC (although actually in Ruislip). The venue is
called Ruislip Social Club, but if you get lost and need to ask directions ask
for the football club.
Locally a lot of people mix up the Rugby Club and the Football club, if you end up at the Rugby Club go down the road opposite it, then first right, first right, first left. Total distance about 500 yards.
TO FIND IT - If you have a Sat Nav use HA4 6JQ
See alternative routes below this section
From the M1: Follow Signs for Heathrow Airport on the M25. Come off at Junction 16 onto the A40, come off at The Polish War Memorial junction taking the A4180 turning left towards Ruislip, continue on this road (named) West End Road, and turn right into Grosvenor Vale after approx 1.5 miles, the club/ground is at the end of the road.
From the M25: Follow Take Junction 16 Off M25 onto M40/A40. Then come off at The Polish War Memorial junction taking the A4180 turning left towards Ruislip. Continue on this road (called West End Road), and turn right into Grosvenor Vale after approx 1.5 miles, the club/ground is at the end of the road.
From the M4: Exit at junction 4B, take the M25 Towards Watford, come off at junction 16 and join A40. Leave at The Polish War Memorial junction A4180 turning left towards Ruislip. Continue on this road (called West End Road), and turn right into Grosvenor Vale after approx 1.5 miles, the ground is at the end of the road.
From "London": Unless you know the local roads get on to the A40 towards Oxford and exit at the Polish War Memorial roundabout on to the A4180 turning right towards Ruislip. Continue on this road (called West End Road), and turn right into Grosvenor Vale after approx 1.5 miles, the club/ground is at the end of the road.
Alternative routes are as follows, if you want to avoid the western stretch of the M25 which can very very busy.:-
From M25 up from Surrey. Exit at Junction 15 and take the M4 towards London, leave M4 at Junction 3 and take A312 towards Hayes/Northolt/Ruislip, this eventually brings you out at the Polish War Memorial Roundabout over the A40. Go straight on on to the A4140 (see above).
From the North, M1, M25 anticlockwise from Essex etc. (If possible come south on the M40, then see above). Leave M25 at J21A and follow signs for M1 SOUTH. Join M1 and leave M1 at Junction 5. It is then just a case of following the signs as follows. Initially Bushey, then quite soon Northwood, then from Northwood, Ruislip. Your Sat Nav will do the trick if you have one as long as to start with if it tries to send you in to Watford you ignore it!!
Common to all routes using A40.
As you come up from the A40 you pass under a large dark railway bridge, through a small parade of shops then round a small double bend. The road then runs straight for around 1/4 mile. At the end of this straight the road turns left around a bend, Grosvenor Vale is on the right on this bend.
LOW EMISSION ZONE: Tropic at Ruislip is INSIDE the LEZ which means larger vans and lorries MUST comply or you risk being fined. See link for details, but in a nutshell if you come in a car(s) you are OK.
The venue is top right in the picture above (as asides, Jordan once lived in Courtfield Gardens and 45 Cranley Drive was used by Russian Spies during the Cold War (read more from link)).
LINKING TO US - VERY IMPORTANT
Please note our name is The "Tropic At Ruislip".
We are NOT Tropical, Tropica, Tropics, Tropicana, Tropic@Ruislip, Tropic' The Tropic or any other way you want to phrase it.
Please do NOT us the @ symbol in our name on your listings
On any flyers, web links etc. please use our full
By doing it this way it means that anyone looking for
us on the web
The name is actually a play on words for the book by Leslie Thomas, the Tropic Of Ruislip
Entry to the building
Along the left hand side of the building there is a "road" which leads to doors that access directly in to the main music room. It is suggested that on arrival you first go in via the main front door and ask for the side door to be opened for you if you need it opening to bring in your equipment. You can leave your vehicles parked in a line up there if you wish, but must NOT leave them after unloading so they block access to the top of the road.
You can park on the grass to the right of the road, so right by the entrance doors. Load in is easy and more or less level.
Access Hours - VERY IMPORTANT FRIDAYS ONLY
There is a dance class held in the main hall between 4.15 and 6.00. You can gain access to the music room before this or after, BUT not during, nor can you be in the dressing room between these times. You can, of course, have a game of pool or darts in the bar. If you come early and start setting up ask the lady running the class when you can get back in, as sometimes her last lesson does not take place and you can get back in at say 5.30.
You should be able to gain access to the venue from 1 pm but NOT before unless by appointment on a Friday. If you are coming this early please ring the venue on 01895 637 487 to ensure there is nothing on in the room other than the dance class. It is suggested that you do this the day BEFORE your visit in the evening, as there may not be anyone there in the morning.
Band start time is usually 9.30pm with doors at 8.30, so arriving at 6.30 smart is suggested. Please note if you arrive early and decide to leave your gear and go off for a bite to eat (say) then all items are left at your own risk (there are staff around....).
Doors to the music room open to attendees at 8.30 normally, but if sound-check is running late it usually not a big problem to hold off to 8.45pm.
Access Hours - VERY IMPORTANT SATURDAYS ONLY
Access from 6pm possible, earlier if required should not be a problem, please note on HOME match days getting in during/just after a game could be an issue due to traffic, by 6pm most folk will have gone. Doors to music room are at 8.30 and band on stage at 9.30 approximately and finish say 11.30, but can go to 12.00 midnight. Sometimes the room is used during home games as a overflow bar and access early is not possible, it depends on who they are playing (and how many might turn up).
Access Hours - VERY IMPORTANT SUNDAYS ONLY
Access from 6pm possible, earlier if required should not be a problem. Doors to music room are at 8.00 and band on stage at 8.30 approximately and finish say 10.30, but can go to 11.00. If you are appearing on a Sunday best to just check in a few days before and I will check if the venue will be open during the day as sometimes they remain closed until the evening, but then somebody would be drafted in to let you in.
You can unload and place items just inside the side doors or in the dressing room area if you come early but most certainly NOT on the dance floor unless hard up to the stage and NOT on the stage unless it is towards the rear out of the way of the PA setting up (unless it is already there or you are bringing your own).
Behind the curtains on the stage you may find items of PA equipment. These are privately owned and do NOT belong to the club OR Tropic' and must not be used without first asking under ANY circumstances. The owner is a regular at the gigs and he will be most upset if he sees any of his stuff in use (but if asked first may well say yes.....).
The Stage - and the stage extension.
The stage has three extension sections that go on the front of it. Generally they are left out, but if they are not there they will be in the dressing room, if this is locked ask the staff for the key. THE SECTION MARKED MIDDLE UNDERNEATH MUST GO IN THE MIDDLE(!)
There are power points both sides of the stage, ask if you are unable to work them out. There are hooks at the rear for a banner, so if you have a banner it is suggested you put a length of string between any hooks and hang it on them.
Projector and screen.
Some bands like to show moving images. As far as we are aware the venue do not own such equipment, although there is a projection style TV in the ceiling over the stage and the rear of the stage can act as a "screen". You can hook your equipment in to it if you wish - but it is by no means great! You are welcome to bring your own, but check out the stage dimensions!! YOU WILL NEED A SCREEN as the wall at the back of the stage is (now) in rather poor condition, but was used as the screen. The projector has a "VGA" input and composite video via a phono socket. It may have other inputs, ask.
Generally we will have a full light show for you looked after by one of the "crew". We also have as well as the lights a laser and smoke machine.
We run a "loyalty scheme" where we hand OUT badges at certain gigs and allow customers with them to hand them back in to get a discount of £5 on entry. There exact operation of these scheme can vary, but the details are at this page . Bands CAN NOT opt out of being part of this scheme, I can tell you for 2015 it will be restricted to a maximum of 10 badges "In" at any one gig and realistically will be lower than this, and in 2016 will not operate.
PA set up
If you are bringing your own PA it is very important that if your sound man has a mixing desk he sets up in one of two places ONLY. Either to the left of the stage OR if it is to be towards the back of the room it should go in the back RIGHT HAND CORNER (as you look at the stage) there MUST be a gap left from the mixing desk about one table's length to the main entrance door in order that we can set up there to collect money!!!!! There is no power to the left hand side. A multi-core can be run down the side of the room and there is power near the fire exit.
|There is a room to the right of the stage which will serve as a dressing room.
Whilst it is not large it has a mirror in it, a few chairs and a
large "table". There are (your own) toilets just off it down the
corridor. The door is usually bolted, just through the door by your feet is a
water stop valve, open this if the water is turned off to the loos.
This whole area is for your exclusive use for the evening, so whilst the dressing room itself is not large if you store belongings, guitar cases etc down the corridor to the toilets it will give you more space in the actual room. There is a power point in the corridor - it does NOT work!
Please do NOT open the external doors from this area while you are
using it. We do have a "deluxe" smoking area just off the music room which can
be used pre-gig. If you want a key to the external doors this can be arranged.
YOU MUST NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES SMOKE IN THE DRESSING ROOM OR CORRIDORS
Please note that during the gig staff may well enter the dressing room, please do not leave cash/valuables lying around, we have NEVER had a problem but........
To view the stage layout and dimensions click here
The staff at the venue are brilliant and whilst I am sure they all have homes to go to there never seems to be an undue rush to leave. We like to start at 9.30 and finish for around 11.45. If these timings do not work for your set please let us know, if nothing else just before midnight take a "pause" between tracks where they will probably ring last bell. Music really must finish at midnight, in case the man from the council turns up (again).....
and you should aim be set down and out of the venue by 1.30am
There are two bars in the main building. There should be real ale. We normally will bring along the wherewithal to make tea etc. at 6.30. If you arrive early and want tea/coffee they will make it for you at the bar, but they would normally make a charge which you will be asked to cover.
THE BAR SHUTS AT MIDNIGHT FOR EVERYONE including the bands
BUT if you want to have a drink to have AFTER your show all you need to do is order it, and pay for it, either before you go on, or in any interval in your set. They shut promptly to all as they are not very good at kicking out (which is a good thing) but if people (you) are seen ordering and getting drinks after it has "closed" then all and sundry think they can get drinks as well.
Please see this page
Somewhere to stay overnight
If you are looking for somewhere to stay see this page
Food - pre gig
If you want a bite to eat the best
option is to drive to Ruislip MANOR.
(It is suggested that whilst you may (now) know the way back to the shops where the dark railway bridge is, in Ruislip Gardens, as you could have passed under on the way to the venue you do not, the choice is limited and the pub is.........)
So Ruislip Manor: - Exit the car park and after 20 yards turn right. After 100 yards you will come to a T-Junction where you should turn right again. Stay on this road for about 1/2 mile and you will come to a crossroads where you will have to give way. This is Ruislip Manor.
Go straight ahead at the crossroads and then first LEFT in to the car park
(unless you have a van too height to go under the height restriction). This is a pay and display car park.
ALWAYS PAY IF YOU HAVE TO, the traffic wardens are like vultures. Parking MAY be free
after 6pm in the car park. Read the signs and pay as required. Do NOT park
on the street yellow lines, loads of people do and always get a ticket.
Now, returning to the High Street, if you go right towards the railway bridge just under it is a Wetherspoons Pub, J J Moons (The drinking hole of Scouting for Girls) offering beer and food at good prices. It can get very busy!
Again right as you return to the main road from the car park and on the opposite side of the road to it is Summer China, a Chinese take away offering, I am told, miniscule portions.
Returning to the main road from the car park and turning left, on the opposite side of the road is Master Chef (Menu behind link) offering good "English" food (and this place is highly recommended), or, turning left and staying on the same side as the car park the very last shop just on the roundabout is Shigi - a Chinese buffet type place. Service is very fast there!
If you elect to go to Ruislip (as opposed to Ruislip Manor) the street parking is totally confusing and as such using the car parks there is also suggested. It is a slightly shorter walk to Ruislip itself and there is a MacDonald's up on the left, about a 12 min walk from the venue. Ruislip Manor is about a 15 minute walk. Do not try to drive to Ruislip, by the time you have found a parking space and walked from the car park to the shops you may as well have walked there in the first place!
It is suggested that if you drive to Ruislip (as opposed to Ruislip Manor) and park on the road you will get a ticket - everyone does, it is totally confusing. Use the car parks.
You can read all about Ruislip at the Ruislip Web Site
FOOD - post gig
Everything in Ruislip shuts at midnight, the only place to grab a bite to eat late in the night is McDonalds 24hr at the Target Roundabout Northolt on the A40, about 2.5 miles away. Leave the venue, straight on at the crossroads, then left at the top of the road. Straight on 2 miles, turn left on to the A40 towards London at the roundabout, stay in the left hand lane and come off again at the first exit, you will see the McDonalds to your right on the roundabout (McDonalds was once The Target pub, hence the name of the roundabout).
You might find the kebab shop in Ruislip Gardens open up to about 1 a.m., which is basically in the same direction as McDonalds (above) but only about 1/2 mile down the road and well before the A40