The happy ballroom and more. 20th November 1965 by Andre Martin.

With less than six weeks to go until Christmas, there have been some moves in the direction of the return of popular music to the Happy Ballroom on Hastings Pier; we have reached Saturday 20th November 1965. Yes I have seen in the minutes of the Directors monthly Board Meeting that The Roy Tempest Agency has been in communications with the Pier Management to discuss the possibility of booking acts for the forthcoming 900th celebrations of the Battle of Hastings in October 1966. Also an organisation called Dale & Barton have booked 5 dates from 4th December to present BEAT DANCES in the ballroom – but I have no more information at this time. However there is nothing happening again this week in the Ballroom, but as mentioned last week there was life on the Pier.
Ready Steady Go this week had some good toons being delivered by Chris Andrews “ Yesterday Man” and “To Whom it may concern” : Gerry & the Pacemakers “ Walk hand in hand” : The Searchers “ Take Me for what I’m worth” The Who “ My Generation” also on the show this week were The Beat Stalkers, The Kinks and Keith Powell, Keith and Cathy pulling it all together to give us a good start to the weekend.
The Witch Doctor has reduced the number of bands being presented in the run up to the Festive Season, but quality is not being reduced with Saturday night featuring The Herd with support. The Record nights are as always very popular and kept at a reasonable cost. The highlight in the week was Steve Muscles Maxted who has taken over Thursday Nights and would be in situ for a few years to come, and at many venues in Hastings, such was his popularity – Steve was a great character, he was a showman, you never knew just what he would get up to next as we would find out over the months.
The BBC were slightly reducing the pop content to the schedules, could this be the impact of the Pirate Stations and their providing what the youngsters really wanted – that is something that we would all have our own views. The regular programmes were as good as ever Saturday 10.00 and it was Saturday Club with Gerry and the Pacemakers, Peter & Gordon, Dave Berry and the Cruisers, Susan Maughan, Acker Bilk and The Mike Cotton Sound, records and stories being provided by the ever popular Brian Matthew. Lunchtime it was another icon of broadcasting Jack Jackson with his cast of thousands. Later in the afternoon it was European Pop Jury followed by Music from the Movies, this week the featured artiste was Pat Boone. Later in the evening it was Home & Away from Munster thanks to BFBS/BBC bringing together families stationed in Germany on this week’s show Elkie Brooks, Migil 5 and Les Dawson.
Sunday – we have Easy Beat introduced by Keith Fordyce and featuring the Johnny Howard Band and “the best on disc”. Lunchtime 2 Way Family Favourites was a London & Cologne link up over the roast and pudding. Later Fluff was around with Pick of the Pops.
Television picks this weekend included Thank Your Lucky Stars from ATV Birmingham and included Jim Dale, Joe Brown, Frank Ifield, Lynn Holland, Bill J Kramer, Cleo Lane and Sounds Incorporated. The BBC was as ever in the hands of David Jacobs at 5.15 with his Hit or Miss selected by the guests from the entertainments world.
With Christmas just around the corner, we are waiting with interest just to see what is going to be on the schedules for the year, in those days we had to wait, not like today when the programme trails start months before the actual dates scheduled to be broadcast. Until next week, you all take care, and be good – Hah Hah!
Andre Palfrey-Martin ©2015

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