Soul XPress – The Yelton Hotel – December 1993


supplied by Barry French

Mick Allen sax, Den Wootton drums, Mandie “B” vocals, Nick ?? vocals, Len Benton (out of shot) bass and Barry French guitar.

Barry French… Can anyone confirm the name of the male singer Nick ???? A northern lad with a huge voice. I can’t remember his surname, he only played a few gigs then moved back north.  I’m pretty certain that this was Mandie’s & Nick’s first gig with the band.

Mandie B… I think I can answer that, the male vocalist in Soul X press back then was the fabulous Nick More. Thanks Barry French for putting up with me and thanks for the picture. XX

Paul Merton wearing a Hastings Beatles Day shirt.

supplied by Stewart Rockett

Stewart Rockett… Spotted on BBC’s ‘Have I Got 30 Years For You’ retrospective, Paul Merton wearing a Hastings Beatles Day shirt.

Tim Harris… Has a place in Winchelsea doesn’t he ?

Adrian Stannard… Comedy genius

Kathy Wood… I spotted that shirt

Tony Court-holmes… i believe he lived in fairlight for a while

Glenn Piper… yes he did

Perri Ann Haste… Well spotted!

Alan Esdaile… collectors item.

Stuart Moir… Has he got lippy on ??

Iain Cobby… Paul was married midsummers day 21.06.03 at Rye Town Hall , same day as my wife Joanne and I were married at Peasmarsh Church, my good friend Mr Tony Davis giving a reading. Some of my guests witnessed Pauls bride arrive on the back of a horse , sadly she died and he moved away from his Fairlight home. He’s always been a great comedian, and part of our memories of that day!

Sheila Maile… yes he is brilliant on hignfy. He was also married to Caroline Quentin in the early days

Do Not Move!

shared from Trevor Bell Old Clubland Acts

Phil Gill… No, my people would have removed it all before I got there.

Julian Carter… Not that, but I have turned up for gigs where the DJ has taken up half of the stage, leaving the other half for my eight-piece band.

Phil Gill… Julian, Yeah, but once upon a time Digger and Dave the Plank would’ve sorted all that nonsense out before we’d even arrived….

Jamie Goddard… same here! Quite a few times! Always arrive early now so the Dj can set up somewhere else

Lance Collins… We are also entertainers ! Hate being stuffed in the corner just because we are the DJ.

Phil Thornton… Done lots of gigs set up on the dance floor in front of the stage – makes for a fun time if the gig is sold out …… wouldn’t be allowed now though

Paul Huggett… No but more than once turned up just after a band that was already set up (and vice versa) due to general ineptitude by the clubs diary keeper.

Mick O’Dowd… When the Baker-Gurvitz Army played The Pier (They’re a trio) the support band had to play on the side of the ballroom.

Amanda Brooks… Yeah. Moved it

Jack Apps… I have been nobbled in more ways than ten. We headline for a college gig, 2 bands before us both over ran and slow moving gear. We cut 1 1/2 hours in two…just like that👽 gotta move along, shit is shit, it is what it is

Pete Prescott… Oh yeah. A good few times.

John Harper… Oh Yes! Plus scenery from local amateur dramatics club too!!


When young did anyone enjoy eating brussels sprouts?


photo: Eric Hunt

Phil Gill… No

Liane Carroll… Yes very much……I’ll get me coat!

Nettie Baker… Yes

Andy Davies… I always loved sprouts but my Mum cooked them for almost as long as the turkey not good and explosive after effects!!

Dave Weeks… will eat them now though

Keith Flanigan… Bubble and squeak the next day

David Kent… Keith, I bubble and squeak all night after eating them.

Vivienne Gibbs… Yes and still do. Nothing fancy just boiled but not for too long!

Kevin White… Yum Yum!

Leigh Wieland-Boys… No, but my Mum always put one on my plate,usually hidden!

Tony Ham… Always loved them.

Ellis Elias… Deep fry them then when taken out add sea salt and pepper….scrumptious!

Judy Atkinson… I used to wrap mine in mashed potato & swallow them whole if possible. Still loathe them now

Susan Butchers… Always loved em. They are beauty food

Paul Buxton… Not as a kid , love them now, they are very musical

Lloyd Johnson… Yes! I did and still do!…

Nicola Dobson… Hated them but like them now

Julie Findlay-jones… Always liked them

Reid McDuffie…love ’em. Never understood why people found them bitter. But BBC science says….”Surprisingly, it could be your genes that determine your feelings about these controversial little vegetables. A 2011 study by Cornwall College found that sprouts contain a chemical, similar to phenylthiocarbamide, which only tastes bitter to people who have a variation of a certain gene. The research found that around 50 per cent of the world’s population have a mutation on this gene. The lucky half don’t taste the bitterness usually associated with sprouts, and therefore like them a whole lot more than everyone else”

Kim Thompsett… Fried up they are great. Didn’t like them much as a kid but they’ve grown on me… Mostly behind the ears.

Mike Waghorne… Kim, didn’t your mother keep telling you to wash behind your ears !

John Warner… Loved em!

Despo Hawkins… Always loved them . Had a huge amount tonight my first ones this year . Cooked with onions and potatoes

John Beeching… Didn’t like them much as a kid owing to my Mum putting the Christmas sprouts on to boil round about mid summers day.

Pauline Hillier… John, all our mums did that

Pauline Richards… Love sprouts. 1st of the year was at the Harrow Pub. Sausage mash carrots and sprouts! Lovely

Karen Sweatman… Satan’s haemorrhoids

Matt Thomas… Hated them as a kid but strangely love them now

Marcus J Lamb-Bentley… Yes. Prepared properly ( many different ways) they are great

Chris White… Love them

Martin Curcher… Love ‘um always have done

Fred Marsh… yes

Keith Veness… Love them when not over cooked

Margaret Trowell… Love them, for Christmas I boil them so they are just softened, drain and add butter, fried bacon lardons and whole chestnuts…delish😋. Oh and I drink the water they were boiled in with a good shake of pepper!

Jeanette Jones… I have always liked them but I was officially a ‘funny’ kid

Linda Cote… i love them

Jan Deane… Love ’em!

Beki Milton… Yes! My daughter’s love them too

Joolz Dunkley… Yep

Marcus de Mowbray… Yes, but only when they had gravy and bread sauce on them, and then I loved them and still do

Chris Meachen… Absolutely love sprouts, – will happily eat a whole plateful… Try them with a little lemon juice…

Rick Startin… Always loved them – add a bit of sugar to the water when you’re cooking them and they won’t be bitter. Serve with loads of butter.

Lorna Brazier… No and still don’t like them

Frank Broeders… Yes

Darren Holmes… Yes and still do!!!

Marie Richardson… yes and i stiil love sprouts. They are just mini cabbages

Ian Marketis… No never liked them and over rated and l don’t like cabbage

Steve Barton… Hated them as a kid but love them now especially with a dab of marmite on them

Graham Sherrington… Steve, Need more MARMITE!!!!! never thought of doing this.

Mick O’Dowd… Yep!

Sheila Maile… Yes and still do

Dani Turner… Yes. I hated sweets! Loved veg and cheese. Strange child. Still love them.

Maz Pettitt… Loved them

Sue Buckle… Yes always loved them

Gareth Huggett… Amazing!

Brian Hepburn… Yes love them

Nick Bloomfield… Yes, I still love them. Brussel sprout soup is souperb…

Malcolm McDonald… no, but as i got older, love em…

Claire Hamill… No

Kevin White… I love them, always have

Janette Morfey… me too. Xxx

Ian Smith… No!

Terry Reeves… It’s the after affects

Very best wishes for Christmas and the New Year

Very best wishes to everyone for the Christmas period and the new year and hoping 2021 is going to be better than this. Well it can’t be any worse!  A Big Big thank you to everyone who has supported SMART and kept the site and me going over these difficult months. The last SMART coffee meet was way back in February and then we had one booked for April but had to cancel due to Covid. Well looks like the next few weeks will get tougher and tougher. Here’s hoping we can all get back together sometime in the new year. As always still looking for more old photos and cuttings with a connection to the Hastings area, to keep the page interesting. Please feel free to post to the facebook page or email over to me, with as much detail as possible. Lots of love and whatever happens, they can’t take away our memories! Take care and stay safe xx

Chris Jolly… Have a FAB Christmas Alan! Take care sir… xxx

Steve Amos… Happy Christmas Alan!

Maureen Anderson… Merry christmas

Andrew Clifton… Merry Christmas Alan.

Jacqueline Marsh… Happy Christmas, keep up the good work, we all enjoy your postings

Kevin Burchett… happy christmas Alan missed seeing you this year

Pete Prescott… Have a wonderful Christmas Alan.

Wendy Weaver… Happy Christmas Alan. Hope 2021 will be better than 2020 and that we can all meet up again. xxx

Pete Houghton… Happy Christmas Alan Hope You Have A Great Time Yours Pete

Nick Shute… Great fun page!… best wishes

Peter Millington… You too Alan – I miss your gatherings as I’m sure everyone does. Keep well and let’s hope for a better 2021

Dave Nattress… Thanks Alan and once again, great appreciation for starting this website. Initially I was so pleased to find all the posts about the massive local music scene, (that keep turning up), but of course, the posts that give the memories of the local scene are also of great interest. Have as good a Christmas and New Year as you can and best wishes to everyone who helps keeping the memories coming back – till I forget them again.

Mike Vawdrey… Outside your geographical area by a couple of hundred miles or so but always find much of interest so keep on keeping on and raise a glass to better times past and future !

Mick O’Dowd… Thank you Alan for keeping this alive! really miss the SMART Meets. One day!!! More memories keep flooding back . Stay safe.

Mike Raxworthy… Happy Christmas mate – and fingers crossed for a better New year!!!

Jan Warren… Merry Christmas SMARTIES!!

Barry French… Merry Christmas Alan, much thanks for keeping the SMART site alive during these strange times. Hopefully, in the not to distant future, all us “Smarties” will be able to meet up again .

Stephen Moran… Wishing you a very Happy Christmas Alan, I very much look forward to seeing you again at future SMART meets.

Film posters High Street Hastings – 1950’s

supplied by Graham Kelly

Alan Esdaile… Trying to work out what the music poster is?

Lloyd Johnson… Which one is the music poster Alan?….two Cinema posters, one Carnival Week, a fire brigade one and before the party on the steps…

Alan Esdaile… The one that looks like a guy in a pork pie hat and blowing a trumpet??? but perhaps its something completely different?

David Kent… it looks like the trumpet is held up to his ear. Johnnie Ray?

Ian Quinnell… Where was this photo taken? I can’t seem to place it

Roy Penfold… High Street. Salters Lane is to the left of the picture.

Mick Knights… Bottom of the steps from the Croft, when I was a school it was a scrap metal yard.

Ian Quinnell… I just hope the old established pubs can survive, they are so much at the heart and soul of of the Old Town.

Paul Coleman… Looks like a burglar to me? Hammer in hand climbing a ladder? Nah! That must be the fireman. So what’s the music bit?

The Beez Neez – Help Our Pop Group – 1977


Andre Palfrey-martin collection

Andre Martin…This will get a few people thinking – from Hastings Observer July 1977

Chris Pook….This was an ad for the group that became The Beez Neez. Julie was one of the singers and we used to practise at Nutrition House in the health food shop which was owned by her family! Her brother Mark was the drummer and the lead guitarist joined the Mobiles and featured on their hit singles and was also on ToTP! Mr O’Dowd was our manager. I played bass guitar.

Peter Millington….This may have resulted in Beez Kneez being launched

Chris Pook….It definitely was Peter. the group was started by Roy Harris and had his son Mark on drums, and daughters Julie and Tracey as singers. The guitarists chopped and changed and the singing line up varied from a lead singer with three backing singers to just a lead singer. We gigged extensively in town and all over the South East, even going as far as south Wales!

Mick O’Dowd….I answered this add and became their manager.

Mark Harris….good days!!!!

Andre Martin…..Here is a flashback to those days –


Lance Collins… Just found this site. Remember Chris well. Loading up gear from Nutrition House. Supported them a few times with my disco. Shooting Star Roadshow. Happy days

Julie Bowles… Loved these days. We should have a reunion. All the best. Julie (was , Harris)

The Carlisle Hastings February/March 1979

supplied by Ken Copsey

Ken Copsey… Seem to remember there was some discussion about the billing of the Piranhas gig at the Carlisle. They were definitely top of the bill. Teenbeats were tagged on to get in the local mods.

John Gale… Went to the all those mate,,,, the only band not worth watching on the those bills were the Teenbeats,,,, they were crap 🤣🤣🤣. Seriously, mate all good bands. The Chicane night ended up a bit messy i recall , less said about that the better 😂. The Piranha gigs were particularly good as they attracted a mixed crowd , I remember the one where Nicky and the Dots supported l them too, a certain mate of mine went flying down the stairs with his broken leg. Think it was that one anyway 😂. Good Times mate . What I would give for a night like that tonight ?

supplied by John Gale

Steve Sampson… Was that the night Kev O fell down the stairs ! 🤣… one of those at the Carlisle I lost my hearing for days after being pushed into the speaker stack while pogoing

Ken Copsey…Unless my memory fails me the place was completely packed that night from the front of the stage to about two thirds back. I can imagine it would have been quite easy to end up wedged against the PA. This was my first gig with the Teenbeats and I was still an innocent 16 year old.


Dancing Blind – Line Dancing video from Bill Third

Bill Third… It’s taken a while, but we got the video of Dancing Blind finished and the YouTube channel and new website went live on Wednesday 0:00 hrs or Thursday 0:00 hrs. Please have a look, leave a comment or like if you feel so inclined, and it would be great if you could publicise the link. All proceeds of downloads, once we’ve got that in place, will go to RNIB.

Bill Third… Thanks Alan, much appreciated