ALFRED CLUB, No. 23, ALBEMARLE STREET. Established 1808; limited to 600 members; entrance fee, 8 guineas; annual subscription, 8 guineas. It was formerly known by its cockney appellation of Half-read.
Peter Cunningham, Hand-Book of London, 1850
... is described by Earl Dudley, in his time, as the dullest place in existence, "the asylum of doting Tories and drivelling quidnuncs." It was at this Club that "Mr. Canning, whilst in the zenith of his fame, dropped in accidentally at a house-dinner of twelve or fourteen; stayed out the evening, and made himself remarkably agreeable, without any of the party suspecting who he was." (Quarterly Review, No.110).
John Timbs, Curiosities of London, 1867