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Plan for Back Bay private club pits wealth vs. wealth

Haddon Hall, recently purchased by philanthropist Sandy Edgerley.
Haddon Hall, recently purchased by philanthropist Sandy Edgerley. –Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe

A proposal to open a private for-profit social club in the Back Bay is turning into a rich story. As in well-off people lining up for or against a developer’s plan to convert an office building into a posh hangout where the city’s old-money elite can mingle with aspiring leaders from various fields.

Supporters of the idea include Peter Lynch, the legendary former Fidelity Magellan Fund manager; Ron Sargent, who was chief executive of Staples Inc.; nightlife mogul Patrick Lyons; and Cathy Minehan, former president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

Opponents include several residents of the tony neighborhood, among them retired district court judge Brian R. Merrick, former Scientific-Atlanta chief executive Sidney Topol, and former state representative Paul Demakis.

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