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Clive House, Trichy

Clive House is situated in Tiruchirappalli (also known as ‘Trichy’), Tamil Nadu. This is one of famous landmarks in Tiruchirappalli, located at the foot of famous Rockfort. It is currently a property of St. Joseph’s College, Tiruchirappalli and serves as a hostel for students. It is a beautiful house with amazing structure, architecture and design.

History of Clive House

Clive House was occupied by Major General Robert Clive, 1st Baron Clive, KB, FRS in 1952 for almost a year, who was first British Governor of Bengal Presidency and credited for establishing East India Company’s rule over a large portion of South Asia which includes Indian Subcontinent. He is one of the most controversial figures in British Colonial history. He arrived in India in 1744 as a company agent for East India Company (EIC) but with his intelligence and hard work he gradually grew in stature and started working as a military officer EIC. Clive House has great historical importance as it has witnessed Lord Clive’s stay.

It is said and believed that the house was initially owned by a noble Muslim man and was taken over by Clive in 1952 when he moved to Tiruchirappalli as a military officer for a short time. Later in 1880s when St. Joseph College established in 1844 was moved to Tiruchirappalli (then well known as a Trichinopoly) from Nagapatnam, Clive House became the property of the college and put in use as a hostel for students from various sections of India and other places.

Architecture and Structure

Clive House has beautiful architecture. On the ground floor of the building, we can see a series of arches in Islamic style, with a central passageway which takes us to a vast open courtyard. There is a Naubat Khana which would have probably was at the top of this structure, and used to beat or play drums on ceremonious occasions. While at the upper storey, we can see features of Gothic structure. It must have been constructed later. The house faces the ‘Nayak’ which is a built temple tank and called as a Teppakulam in local diction.

What’s So Special

Clive House has witnessed the most important era in Indian history. It was being used by Lord Robert Clive as a residence for almost a year, who was infamous for looting India and putting whole South Asia under the rule of British East India Company. Other than that, it is an extraordinary structure having shades of then styles and designs. Currently, it is not possible to tell where exactly Clive was lived in an entire building as there is a possibility of removing older structures to make a way for a hostel in the 19th century. Only a marble plaque at the entrance states that ‘Lord Clive lived here in 1952’.

How to Reach

Trichy is located 322 kilometers (200 miles) south of Chennai and 374 kilometers (232.4 miles) north of Kanyakumari, and is being served by Tiruchirappalli International Airport and Tiruchirappalli junction. You have to get to the Tiruchirappalli first. Once you reach Tiruchirappalli you can choose the following options to get to Clive House.

•  Location Details: Clive House, 33, NSB Rd, Singarathope, Devathanam, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu 620002

Mode of Transport
Distance (Miles)
Duration (Minutes)
Fare (INR)
Tiruchirappalli International Airport
Clive House
350 - 420
95 - 140
1,700 - 2,500
Tiruchirappalli Junction Clive House
5 - 6
140 - 180
Tiruchirappalli Central Bus Station
Clive House
8 - 10
170 - 210

•  Local Transport:
Other than the above options, there are several options available such as auto-rickshaw, bicycle on rent, etc. to reach Clive House. If you choose one of these rentable options, then you will get charged between INR20-INR100 from the above locations.

Attractions Nearby

There is also a historical fort known as Rock Fort which is currently owned by Tamil Nadu Government and preserved by Archaeological Survey of India besides Clive House. It is a temple complex which is built on an ancient rock which is 83m (272.3ft) high. The view of the city from there is tremendous. It has witnessed several fierce wars in different eras. It has played a vital role in Carnatic wars which helped EIC to lay foundations of colonial rule over India. You can get to know about the history of South India and see beautiful structures from 17th and 18th century.

Tiruchirappalli or Trichy is a lively city having a heritage of thousands of years. You can get to see amazing places and people. Clive House still has kept its importance. While having so many options around tourists and visitors, historians and researchers visit Clive House in large numbers every year. Clive House is not just a building; it is documentation of British Rule era. It is a symbol of unity that Indians preserve. It is a symbol of the importance of historical evidence and history itself.