Who played cowboys and indians as a kid?

shared from: the best of the 1950s Facebook pagehttps://www.facebook.com/pg/thebestofthe1950s

Lloyd Johnson… I did. Cap bombs were great!….

Pete Prescott…  I might have done. OK I had a black and white cowboy outfit when I was six. With a black bolster and silver gun. I spent Christmas shooting various family members (mummy mum). all nice harmless stuff. At night I would be put in the sleeping bag my mother made for me and lifted around the room with my head sticking out for my goodnight kiss from everyone… then I would shoot them. I had a wonderful family.

Lloyd Johnson… Your name isn’t Hopalong Cassidy is it? ….😀😀😀

Amanda Brooks… Yeah. I had a silver gun that took caps.

Judith Monk… We did.

Pete Millington… I loved the smell of caps – the first and last addiction I ever had!

Steve Reents… These rocked! I had a giant plastic bag full.

Janet Rennie… Haha great memories

Will Cornell…  My toy soldiers consisted of some lead ones of British Cavalry ca. Crimean War…but my folks found out they were highly collectible and stopped me from playing with them. So it was plastic from that point on. But that didn’t discourage me from the Blue & Grey centennial edition of Civil War soldiers or the WW2 sets (you could get grey for Germans or tan for Japanese, and allies were always green.). Hours on the floor, sandbox, wherever. I still think GI Joe is a doll, like ya know, for girls.

Pete Prescott… I used to dig little trenches in the garden. Then lay next to them to get the full effect. I loved the cap fun I had. I was always envious of anyone who had an action man.I didn’t have one. I still carry the scars of action man envy !

Amanda Brooks… Yeah, I had Sindy doll envy, I didn’t have one for ages, then got one. She weren’t all that.

Olga Mamonova…  in Moscow we played Indians & Indians – various ‘tribes’ against each other, – never the cowboys, as we all supported Indian side.

Jake Nelson… Never stopped playing, as a kid!



View Master – who had one of these?

supplied by Andrew Clifton

Andrew Clifton… Who had one of these?

Jan Warren… Yeah and I still got one!

Robert Searle… yes all in 3D, great pictures

Pauline Richards… Last time I was at ‘jamies’ at Brighton they had children’s menus on those

Jeff Belton… Me, I had one ! One set of slides I had was the James bond movie love and let die.

Mick O’Dowd… The original virtual reality headset!

Michael Wilson… I had one of these with Tin Tin slides on

Nicky Stead… me to – ha ha

Judie Struys… I had 20000 leagues under the sea on mine

Pete Prescott… Oh yes !We had changing of the guard at Buckingham palace. And views of (I think) Switzerland. Must have been around 1960, I wonder what happened to it.

Chris Jolly… I’ve got one of these devices somewhere too…

Clifford Rose… Yes, I had one sent to me from a penfriend in USA


Now over 1000 members on the SMART Facebook page.

A big thank you to Nick Prince for bringing this to our attention and posting these images on the Facebook page.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smart70s/

Alan Esdaile… WOW! Thanks Nick and thank everyone for their support. A number of people help to keep this page interesting and couldn’t do it without them. Don’t forget still need more old group photos and music related cuttings, especially ones from the Hastings area.

Ernest Ballard… Nice one x

Nick Prince… It’s one great page you have created Alan and I couldn’t think of anyone more qualified to successfully start and run such a page than your goodself.. For me the music, local groups, retro talk, film and cinema stuff, pier bits and general chit chat of 60’s, 70’s and 80’s nostalgia successfully goes hand in hand to make it such a great page. Something for everyone that was in the area during those decades and of course further afield… Posts from SMART are regularly shared to three of my pages and that is how broad an appeal it has….

Mick O’Dowd… Well done Alan!

Jon McCallion… Well done Alan.

Paul Dove… Well Done Alan, you keep it real , will be there fri , 👊 🎹 🎤🎸

Dave Nattress… For so long I was trying to discover the names of the very many bands that played the pier – so many of which I saw, as well as getting back to all the other local gigs and venues. Also I was wanting to re-visit old band-mates, local names, the musical competition back in the day, and just to re-live so many local connections, music shops, clothes shops, DJ’s, pubs, clubs, characters, and this site has enabled all of that. It’s compulsive stuff. Really ticked all the boxes and brought the great memories back. Probably best though, the pier on a wet, dark, cold winter’s night, the floor of the bar, ankle deep in Whitbread Tankard bitter, the cold and draughty and actually quite grim old ballroom – great days.

27th March 1964 – Radio Caroline 53 years today – Andre Martin remembers..




Andre Palfrey-martin collection

Andre Martin….Dateline: 19.00hrs [BST] 27 March 1964 – read on………………….
Birth of Pirate Radio in Britain – April 1964
Fifty three years ago, the radio world was going to be changed forever for the listeners in the United Kingdom. In the February of 1964, Irish musician manager and businessman Ronan O’Rahilly obtained the 702-ton former Danish passenger ferry, Fredericia, which was converted into a radio ship at the Southern Irish port of Greenore.
The Fredericia was renamed MV Caroline [after the daughter of the late President Kennedy] On 26th March the MV Caroline set sail under the command of Captain Baeker. Her destination was given as Spain. A Royal Navy destroyer inspected the MV Caroline as she passed Plymouth. On Good Friday – Friday, 27 March 1964, at 18:00 hours the MV Caroline dropped anchor off the coast of Felixstowe, Suffolk, and started test transmissions. The following day – Saturday, 28 March, broadcasting regular programming started at 12 noon on 197 meters on the medium wave band (announced as 199 meters)
The official opening was undertaken by Simon Dee. And the first programme, which had been pre-recorded, was hosted by Chris Moore. The first record that was played on Radio Caroline was “Not Fade Away” by The Rolling Stones. Radio Caroline’s first musical theme was Jimmy McGriff’s “Round Midnight”, a jazz standard co-composed by Thelonious Monk. In March 1964, Birmingham band The Fortunes recorded the song “Caroline”, which later became the station’s theme song. The station’s slogan was “Your all-day music station”.
Broadcasting hours were between 6 am and 6 pm to avoid competition from Radio Luxembourg. After its 6 pm close-down, the station returned to the air at 8 pm and continued until after midnight. This was to avoid direct competition with popular television programmes
What was on offer to the young people in Britain when Radio Caroline launched? It must be remembered that, the Radio Networks were under state control, and the amount of time allowed each day for “recorded music”! ie record was about 5 hours spread across all the networks – Light Programme, Home Service and Radio Three. Because of this restriction much of the music provided was “live” performance or recorded programmes, ie bands, groups and singers. The main competition would have come from Radio Luxemburg broadcasting from the Grand Duchy of Luzemburg, and not being subject to British Laws – the English service was using a lot of pre-recorded programmes, all being sponsored by one of the major record labels, ie DECCA, EMI, PYE etc. It had been because of this “ closed shop” policy that Ronan O’Rahilly had started “ pirate radio” he wanted to promote a Georgie Fame single – but could not break the hold of the big companies and let the independent record labels have air time.
A typical weekends broadcasting would have looked something like this – let’s look first at Saturday – 8.00-10.00 Children’s Choice : 10.00 – 12.00 Saturday Club with Brian Matthews featuring some current pop records, studio recordings and live bands : 13.00-13.30 Jack Jackson and then from 13.30 onwards to about 18.00 –Sports afternoon. The evening would have been made up of musical, comedy and concerts.
Sundays – 9.00 – 10.00 Children’s Favourites: 10.30 – 11.30 Easy Beat with Brian Matthews, records, studio recordings and live bands: 11.31 – 12.00 Religious Service: 12.noon – 13.30 Two Way Family Favourites – BBC London and BFBS[British Forces Broadcasting Service] Cologne [Koln Germany] record requests and dedications – we still had service personnel stationed throughout the world: 13.30 – 14.00 Billy Cotton Band Show, Variety show: 14.00-14.30 Comedy – Navy Lark, Hancock etc.. also on a Sunday afternoon you would have “Top of the Pops” with Fluff – Alan Freeman, another regular show was “Movie Go Round” and of course “Sing Something Simple”
About the only other legal radio source of popular music would have been if you had been lucky enough to be able to tune into American Forces Network – the sources were Holland and France, but this was very much hit and miss as it was dependent on the atmospheric conditions and direction of the transmission – there were only a few US bases in Britain, and they would not have been allowed to broadcast in UK because of the GPO.

Jim Breeds… Worth noting that Caroline is still ‘on the air’ at http://radiocaroline.co.uk/#home.html and occasionally on 1368kHz if you’re in the north.

Alan Esdaile… I was listening to a great show from Clive Garrard last week.

Robert Searle… The very first day Radio Caroline aired,I heard Simon Dee show,it was the first time I actually heard a Bob Dylan record on the radio.

Eric Harmer… I think Simon Dee’s parents lived in Westfield Lane.

Graham How… It certainly is Simon Dee!

Coastal Ham Radio https://coastalhamradio.wordpress.com…  guess for its day it “dared to go where…..” well you know the rest.  Hard to imagine it just celebrated its 53rd birthday.

Hollington remembers – photos & memories wanted.


posted by Andre Martin

Alan Esdaile…  I will have to have a search, I’m sure I’ve got a few from Hollington Community Centre but we always referred to it as Hollington Youth Centre. A few bands used to play their and rehearse. Anyone help?

Andre Martin… Well done Alan, that I know would be most interesting

Tony May… I might have a few old pics of Hollington as well. Will see what I can find…

Andre Martin… One of the topics that I know would be of interest would be for any groups that started in Hollington or have links with Hollington, I know that in the 1960s there were several who used to practise in the South Hall in Oxford Road.

The Happy Ballroom Hastings Pier and more 24th Dec 1966 by Andre Martin

Several people at a recent SMART meeting asked why I had not been writing my “History of The Happy Ballroom – Hastings Pier” for a while, and to be honest the reason has been nothing had happened since November. When you think that, how important an entertainment centre this was at one time, it really was a great shame that it used to sit closed. In the immediate weeks before, the management had kept advertising the venue available for firms and clubs to hold their seasonal events, there are no records of any take-up. This coming Saturday 24th December 1966 there was however a change and booked to appear that night “Lord Caesar Sutch & The Roman Empire.” Yes you have guessed it was Screaming Lord Sutch under a new name. The weekend would have started off on Friday Night with Ready Steady Go, and as I have posted on several sites today [23 Dec] this was the last ever Ready Steady Go. Not perhaps a good way to start off the Christmas Holidays.  The Witch Doctor, offered this Christmas Eve – The Lonely Ones and on the following Thursday – Steve Maxted with his post-Christmas hi jinks, I do remember going to see Steve, but the crowd numbers were down for his usual Thursday Night show. Perhaps people were saving up for New Years Eve, and although this was really well attended there was no advertising and I have been unable to confirm who played that night.
Looking towards a 3 day Bank Holiday Weekend on the Radio & Television, to fill in all the details, would be a major operation, so I have just picked a few items – Light Programme had the important – Saturday Club with Brian Matthew and later in the day items such as Music Parade, Christmas Bandstand and Forces Jamboree. On Sunday [Christmas Day] Family Favourites was FIVE way and Linked LONDON, KOLN, ADEN, SINGAPORE & BORNEO. Later in the afternoon The DJs Christmas Party was spent with Sam Costa, Simon Dee, Keith Fordyce, David Jacobs, Brian Matthew, Pete Murray and Don Moss. Also Round The Horne, Sing Something Simple, Bing Crosby and The Men From The Ministry. Boxing Day Charlie Chester with Family Choice, The Ralph Harris Show, Pop Round Christmas, Ken Dodd, Singalong – the Story of The Black and White Minstrels, & Sherlock Holmes Again ?? Television on Christmas Eve included Grandstand, Film Davy Crocket, and Juke Box Jury with David Jacobs and his guests Judith Durham, Athol Guy, Bruce Woodley and Keith Potger. Later offerings would have included Dr Who. Dixon of Dock Green, Film- High Adventure, The Val Doonican Show, See the Children Sing and Midnight Mass. Sunday included Welcome to Christmas, Leslie Crowther at a Children’s Hospital, The Lucy Show, Andy Williams, HM The Queen – address to the Commonwealth. Billy Smart Circus, Disney Time, Carols from Kings, The Black & White Minstrels, Ken Dodd, Film Dr Findley Casebook & The Christmas Story. Bank Holiday Monday – The Munster’s, Grandstand, When Comedy was King, Sooty, Three Musketeers, Top of The Pops 66, Till Death Us Do Part, Brian Rix Farce from Whitehall, and the film The Lady Killers. [Ed Well done if you remember any of those] Over on the Pirate Radio Stations, Radio Caroline South with Dave Lee Travis – DDDBMT : Save Me, Donovan : Sunshine Superman, Who : Happy Jack, Troggs : Any Way You Want Me & Elvis : If Every Day was Like Christmas. On Radio London – Who : Happy Jack, Troggs : Anyway you want me, DDDBMT : Save Mee, Cliff Richard : In The Country & Temptations : I know I’m Losing You. A quick catch up of 50 years ago here in Hastings. It’s been an interesting year looking back FIFTY YEARS – 1966 what a year that was. Who knows what 1967 will bring, was something that we were all thionking about, for some it was good and for others – well perhaps not so good at the time, but we have survived. And I hope enjoyed looking back to our teenage years – you all have a Peaceful Christmas and a New Year to look forward to.
PS Don’t forget the Pier Book – “A Pier without a Pier” by Steve Peak now available and from all accounts a very good read and makes a great Christmas/birthday present – but then I am biased [Chap. 12]. Andre Palfrey-Martin ©2016

Mick O’Dowd… Welcome back Andre. Beginning to get cold turkey( got plenty of that to come) not seeing your posts. Happy Christmas to You, Sheila and the Girls.

Andre Martin… Thanks Mick to you and yours, its been a long time since our path first crossed all in the cause of music.

Andy Qunta… Fabulous, Andre, thanks! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

SMART 32 – Coffee meet report

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deep-purple-prog quo-prog wp0de76ca5_1a

Among the newbies this time was Mick Knight who I haven’t seen for 40 years or more! Mick used to play in a band called ‘Dupree’ which featured Barry Denyer and Andy Bannister at one stage and a changing line up including Piers Clark, Roger Hubbard and Danny Hedge. Hopefully we will get to see some photos soon. Pete Prescott was in conversation with Mick, talking about Steppin Out and other local bands . Mick O’Dowd had with him The Beatles Sgt Peppers Album still with the insert cut outs, The Beatles White Album, The Who Quadrophenia and Expandis Mystic Man 12”. He also had a huge bag full of cd’s and was happy to let anyone have them or for a donation to next years Carnival Radio which pleased Andre Martin. Andre was talking about The Happy Ballroom from 50 years ago when it was going through a very quiet period.  Eric Cawthraw had with him Steamhammers remastered edition of Mountains LP and recommends the band ‘Black Mountain’ who had a really good track called ‘Space to Bakersfield’. Pete Millington was talking about happy memories of The Searchers 1987 pier gig and had with him Billboards Top 100 from the 60’s vol 1 & 2 cds, as well as some interesting photos from Paul Watts 70th birthday. Tony Davis and Sarah Harvey were talking about Tony’s future radio shows and Wendy & Graham Weaver bought along tour programmes from AC/DC  Blow Up Your Video Tour 88, Razors Edge 90/91, Deep Purple Perfect Stranger 84/85 and Status Quo In The Army Now 1986.  Darren Johnson was excited to be going to a private house gig of Iain Matthews, expect a review soon. Laurie Cooksey & Tony Qunta were talking about the next Factrio gig which will take place on the 4th December 2016 at The Fountain in the village of Plumpton at 5.00pm.  Lee Merry had photos of his bedroom wall’s covered in bands he promoted at The Carlisle from the mid 80’s to 2000. He is doing copies and hopefully won’t be too long before we can share them. I had with me albums of The Four Tops Reach Out, The Sensational Alex Harvey Band Framed and Fusion Orchestra Skeleton in Armour. This is just a small bit of what I can remember, anything I missed pleased feel free to add.

Jim Breeds… Sorry we weren’t there.

Alan Esdaile… If you had turned up Jim, you could have popped across the pier and had a go on the snow slide.

Josie Lawson… Be lovely if the meeting had minutes but think it’s just a great together…Used to love spending time in The White Rock Hotel. Attached photo is before the renovation was done and Lawrence used to display one of my poems in frame as you see…they stopped at the renovation….


John Williams… Sorry did not make it mate

Mick O’Dowd… Informative & interesting Meet Alan, as always. Good to see more newbies.

Cheryl White… Shame I missed it. It would have been a great opportunity to speak to the group about Poly Styrene/XRay Spex memorabilia. When is the next one Alan?

Alan Esdaile… Due to Christmas, not till mid January Cheryl. Might be worth you joining the Facebook group Rejects and Reprobates which might be able to help more with Poly Styrene.

Jan Warren… Oh, so very interesting, I wish I could get to these meetings??!! I’ve got Fusion Orchestra, Four Tops and Sgt Peppers!! 🙂 Sgt Peppers is probably my fave Beatles album, but I’m trying to see the “greyish” coloured album underneath it?? …….. first of all I thought Groundhogs (Spilt) or Stones (Aftermath)??? and I thought of a few others – but I’m sure its none of those?? ………… can anyone tell me??? 

Alan Esdaile… That’s The Who Quadrophenia, Jan.

Mick O’Dowd… It seems to me alot of people are getting the wrong impression as to what goes on at the Meets Alan. From reading between the lines of some comments of people who couldn’t attend they are seen as quite formal with speakers etc. Please let everybody know these are as INFORMAL as is humanly possible and you just chat, over a coffee or drink, to anyone who takes your interest. Everybody is welcome and no newbies are allowed to be left unattended for long as Alan always makes sure that someone speaks to them by introducing them to people that might share similar tastes in music etc.(No it’s not a dating agency either!) and from there on in you mingle and chat. Hope this clarifys the situation.

Pete Prescott… Exactly ! I try and make every one. They are so relaxed and great fun.

Darren Johnson… Yes. Enjoy the relaxed informality of it but always interesting stuff to chat about.

Josie Lawson… Very interesting. Thanks. See LOL attended also…best wishes to everyone…

Sarah Harvey… If it wasn’t for the meetings I wouldn’t have met so many wonderful people from the music world…. I have met up with so many friends from yesteryear that I wouldn’t have done otherwise. Its been a catalyst for many band reunions even though some of us haven’t managed it yet……. work in progress 

Tony Davis… I think SMART is a great place to go. Nothing formal just old and new friends chatting over things they have in common – mostly music. Having recently come back onto the music “scene” its been great to catch up with old faces and to make some really good new friends. Well done Alan.

Geoff Peckham… I agree with all the above. Always made welcome, and it’s brought so many musos together, sometimes for the first time, sometimes old buddies. SMART played a big part in Factory’s re-emergence! I only wish I could attend more often.

Side entrance Woolworth Hastings – 1968


Thanks to Peter Fairless for finding this.  Photo source: HBC Hastings Museum 

Peter Fairless… A long, long time ago… I just shared this because it brought back the memory of Saturday afternoons in the town centre – and it made me want a Duncan Fosters sausage roll!

Alan Esdaile… Excellent photo. Well you had records in Woolworth and Stylus Records was through the underpass, over the road from the bakers. Remember the sausage rolls and the cream cakes, tempted a couple of times a week or maybe more!

Jan Warren… Oh yes, lovely to see this!! – I remember the toilets and the bus shelter too! – at least The Carlisle Pub is still there!!

Jane Hartley… Acres the Bakers were much better, of course, I am biased as I worked there!

Mick Bacon… a photo I took just before they changed the side entrance.


Peter Fairless… Oh, that’s a bit sad, Mick. Still, good to have a record. It may matter to someone, one day!

Mike Curtis… And they had the first escalator I’d ever seen.


The Happy Ballroom Hastings Pier & more – 29th Oct 1966 by Andre Martin

As we move to the end of the month of October, life returns to normal, we have had the re-enactment of the battle, the visit from the current Queen and many dignitaries from around the world all leaving their mark, its Saturday 29th October 1966. The Happy Ballroom is again very quiet and there is just not much happening on the Pier. No doubt the Pier Company are still trying to find out who walked over the Triodome earlier in the year after a gig in the Happy Ballroom and made a small hole in the roof, as the rain was now coming into the building ? It certainly given a good test over the last couple of days, the Royal Visit was somewhat wet!  The Weekend would have started for some with our trip to “Ready Steady Go” and this week’s show would have included the Dave Clark Five, Bobby Goldsboro, Edwin Starr and The Troggs and Cathy and Keith keeping order. The Witch Doctor in Marine Court is running a reduced programme at the moment, and Saturday it’s the turn of Twickenham based Downliners Sect to head the entertainment on Saturday Night, the other big event in the week would have to be the return of that mad mad from Maidstone with all his crazy activities and a few good records thrown in as well – Yes you know who I mean – Steve Maxted. The BBC this weekend – Radio Light Programme: Saturday. Children’s favourites with Leslie Crowther, Saturday Clubs guests this week included Manfred Mann, Zoot Moneys Big Roll Band, Brian Poole, Kenny Ball, The Three People, Stevie Lewis and the Johnny Arthey Band with Brian Matthew. Lunchtime it’s David Frost, followed by Music from the Movies, Swingalong, Music Parade and Saturday Bandstand. In th3e evening we have Have a Go, A Night at the Music-Hall, from Stockholm Nord-Ring, Time for Old Time, The Phil Moss Orchestra, Graham Dalley & His Music and Pete’s Party with Pete Murray & records.
Sunday – Easy Beat, with Keith Fordyce, Lunchtime 12 noon 3 way link up for Family Favourites with London, Koln & BFBS Cyprus. The Navy Lark, The Clitheroe Kid and the Billy Cotton Band Show, Semprini and Pick of The Pops, were the afternoon show. Movie Go Round Pt 1 featured “After the Fox” with Peter Sellars, Victor Mature & Brett Ekland. Evening continued with Top of The Form, Singe Something Simple. Open House with Desmond Carrington, Sunday Half-Hour, Movie Go Round Pt 2, The Frankie Howerd Show, David Hughes with his choice of records and ending with The Jazz Scene.
Television would have included Saturday – Grandstand, Juke Box Jury with David Jacobs and his panel Rita Tushingham, Moira Lister, Adam Faith & Johnny Devlin. Dr Who, Dixon of Dock Green, Film “The Man in The Iron Mask”, the Val Doonican Show, the Lucy Show, Match of the Day and The Late Show. BBC 2 The Danny Kaye Show, “Breaking Point” a thriller in five parts, Theatre 625, and the Midnight Movie was “ Crashout” with William Bendix On Sunday after the educational programmes around mid-afternoon – Film Matinee “ Men with Wings” Fred MacMurray. The Best of Bilko: Cherokee Ernie, The Woman in White, Sooty, Where was Moses a religious quiz competition, Songs of Praise, Film “ They Were not Divided “ a tribute to the Guards Armoured Division, Billy Cotton Music Hall, The Leeds international Piano Competition 1966, the look of the Week ,Pirate Radio this weekend would have included top 5 from Radio Caroline South – Hollies: Stop,Stop,Stop. Four Tops: Reach Out, Paul Jones: High Time, Bobby Darin: If I were a Carpenter and Herman’s Hermits: NO Milk today. Radio London with Tony Blackburn Hollies: Stop, Stop,Stop. Four Tops: Reach Out, Bobby Darin: If I were A carpenter, Temptations: Beauty is Only Skin Deep and Cilla Black: A Fool am I .
I have in the back of my mind that there was a college Halloween Dance on the Friday Night, but I cannot find any information, I remember that somewhere at this point in time there was a do at the Dolphin Ballroom featuring the Searchers plus ?? Well it was 50 years ago!! Next weekend it would be Battle Bonfire Night, and that I do recall so until next week and the next look back at Hastings some 50 years ago, you all take care if you are “Trick or Treating” watch out, there are some strange people about!! Heh Heh!!            Andre Palfrey-Martin ©2016