Meridian – Kings Country Club – Eastbourne.

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photo from Sandie Croft via Andre Martin/Kings Country Club Facebook page.

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supplied by Andre Martin/Kings Country Club Facebook page

Janine Anne Hemsley…. Omg. Barry Goacher.

Andre Martin… OMG 30+ years ago – this group photo was taken when the Merries were part of the Jimmy Jones Season – January 1979. Great venue, great acts and great owner.

Chris Gentry DJ (Andre Martin) Kings Country Club 1974

chris gentry

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Janine Anne Hemsley…..I remember it well .

Joe Knight…..GREAT PLACE!!

Andre Martin…..These were taken Summer Season 1974 in the small building next to the new club that was being built by Ray King, when that Opened the whole scene changed and we then could deal with 2500 on a busy night. I have just worked that out – These photos are 40 years old !!

Ian Hargraves….You have not changed much!

Polly…  I was just thinking about Kings Country Club and realised I have no surviving pictures of my life there. Before Janine came along I was the girlfriend of Colin and we came to Eastbourne together after Colin left the Eric Delaney Big band. Meridian was named after the local knicker factory where we came from. Pete Brent was guitarist, Barry Goacher was the drummer, Colin Hadley keyboards, Steve Devine was saxophonist. There was also a trumpeter called Keith Bolton and his wife Paula. When we first came Colin was part of the Mick Urry band. After Mick and the band parted Meridian was formed. I have many happy memories of Ray taking us for dinner on our birthdays in his Rolls Royce,as Colin was the youngest member of the band. I also remember the band who played downstairs and one of the members Laurie Broadway, who was a mate. Eddie was the entertainment manager and Lenny was one of the barmen. I remember Pete Bonner well, as we had a party at his house once and I threw up all over his prize roses! Those were the days!

Janine Anne Hemsley… Polly are you there ??? xx

Jane Hartley… Kings put on great shows, saw many a big act there. Sundowners over the road, we used to belt over the marshes after the pubs chucked out, to get there before they shut the doors! Not to be recommended kids!!!!

Mick Knights… Kings was a bit too posh, ( which really means they wouldn’t let me in) it was the Sundowners every time.

Alan Esdaile… Agree with Mick. Used to go to the Sundowners. Saw The Real Thing, Mud & The Troggs among others.

Colin Norton… We (The Rebels) were one of the first bands to play at the Sundowners. It was quite a small building at the time. When we were playing somewhere else in Eastbourne in the evening till 11 pm. We would go over to the Sundowners and play from 1 am till 3 am or something like that. We played for steak and scampi 🙂 …. Oh, and fun as well 🙂

Sandie Croft… I was singer with Meridian in 1978 & ´79. Line up then was Barry Goacher drums, Pete Brent bass, Andy Flack Keyboards.Pete was replaced by Larry Barton in ´79 & singer Ronnie Collins joined us then also. We made an album “In The Mean Time Meridian. Which I still have a couple of copies of. We were all good mates & had such fun working there.

Who remembers the Provincial Hotel Havelock Road Hastings?

photo source: unknown

Keith Veness… I do

Mike Mitchell… The Golden Hind?

Neal Hunter… I do

Patricia Lloyd… Me

Tony Court-holmes… had a snooker table out the back

Jackie Hersee… I do

Stephanie Blackledge… Me too. Used to work in Havelock Road

Mark Harris… Right next door to Frank Bettis Autos! I believe Frank used to ride speedway at the old Pilot Field track.

Richard J Porter… Eddie Bartholomew from Cranbrook took on Frank Bettis Autos. Behind there in Robertson Street my wife’s Father had Coopers the Greengocers.

Mick Knights… My shoes always stuck to the carpet!!

Ian Cramp… I think so, I lived in Hastings until 1982 was it there then?

Alan Esdaile… I think it was The Golden Hind then Ian.

Kev Towner… Ooh – before my time. Fascinating though!!

Martin Richter… I’ve got a brochure for it somewhere!

Paul Sleet… Used to play for their snooker team. Bill and Anne Bailey were the licensees.

Richard J Porter… Hollingsworths too when they were there.

Alan Esdaile… My friend Don Bailey’s mum and dad used to run it. When the pub was closed, we used to play bar billiards.

Paul Slidel… I wonder what year the Golden Hind took over? I don’t remember this hotel, but used the Hind a lot! Is this late 60s?

Alan Esdaile… This is probably mid sixties Paul and The Golden Hind around 78/79???

Martin Richter… Stevie D

Wendy Weaver… I think it was The Golden Hind when I came down to live in Hastings in 1978/79.

Who remembers The Golden Hind Pub Havelock Road Hastings?

Tony Davis says… Was looking through SMART the other day and saw some photos of Steve D and it took my mind back to the days when I worked at the Golden Hind. Started me thinking if anyone has any photos of those days circa 1979-1983. If you’ve got any photos, stories or thoughts lets see if we can get a thread up and running on SMART.

Alan Esdaile… Any photos or memories, please feel free to post.

Graham Belchamber… Remember the pub and I’ll have a think through the old grey matter!

Peter Fairless… Yes, I remember it, very well!

Mike Mitchell… I met my wife in The Golden Hind. Sticky carpet and video juke box. That’s the pub not the wife.

Leigh Wieland-Boys… Went to the Golden Hind most weekends before going nightclubbing! Worked in Havelock Road & often popped in at lunchtimes too. Loved that place – lots of good memories!

Jane Dorsett… the good old days leigh……..x

Peter Fairless… Wow, those town centre pubs!

Read moreWho remembers The Golden Hind Pub Havelock Road Hastings?

SMART SOUNDS by Colin Bell reviewing Bubblerock Is Here To Stay! The British Pop Explosion 1970-73, Various Artists 3CD

BUBBLEROCK IS HERE TO STAY – The British Pop Explosion 1970-73   Various Artists 3CD Set

Well i guess the clue is in the title. Grapefruit Records latest 3CD set delves into the mostly pop candyfloss, i.e. consume and forget, pop records that were ubiquitous in the early 70’s. Pop & Rock had by now gone their separate ways, with serious bands getting…well serious, whilst a legion of pop bands old & new released a slew of what the Americans dubbed ‘Bubblegum’ on their side of the pond. They had The Archies, Cuff Links, Crazy Elephant etc. We hit back with our own home made ‘Bubblerock’. So what earned an entry into this genre? Simple 3 minute melodic lightweight hooky radio friendly songs in the main. Certain labels like RCA, Bell, & Mickie Most’s RAK label specialised in having teams of writers hammering out numbers chiefly aimed at the pocket money generation of 11-14 year olds. Early champions were the nascent Sweet & Mud. This new compilation however digs deeper into the rubble and unearth’s some long forgotten nuggets alongside the more familiar. Disc1 cracks off with the oft compiled ‘Groovin With Mr Bloe’ and serves up more well known names with Pickettywitch, Blue Mink, Marmalade, Lieutenant Pigeon & Hotlegs (10cc) but it’s the unfamiliar and the forgotten that provides the fun, like ‘I Fought The Law’ by Posse, ‘Alexandra Park’ by Fumble & the notorious at the time St. Cecelia ‘Leap Up & Down (Wave Your Knickers in The Air) a record actually loved and championed by the late great DJ Jimmy Young who played it regularly on his Radio 2 show. But when it comes to ‘novelty’ pop the undisputed champion is without doubt Jonathan King and his UK Records label. Whatever we may now think of King on a personal level, he was/is a genius for coming up with ‘studio bands’ with (usually) daft names and scoring massive hits. Amongst the more well known here are The Piglets ‘Johnny Reggae’ kicking off Disc2. A record that surprisingly didn’t get banned (if you study the lyrics), i’ll return to King in a moment, Disc2 also sports big names Sweet, Tremeloes, Mungo Jerry & White Plains. and again a host of also rans in Jungle Jim, Peter Cowap, Tina Harvey with a take on The Stones ‘Have You Seen Your Mother Baby’ and Kim’s younger brother Ricky Wilde. But let’s return to White Plains with their entry of ‘When You Are A King’ a record that is vastly superior to some of those i’ve mentioned. It’s a superbly crafted and indeed complex song, what’s it doing here? Then i had a thought David Wells who is the label boss and compiles these releases could be having an ‘in’ joke with this one. As previously mentioned you will find tracks by Jonathan King scattered throughout under different names and guises. Is David asking us to guess which tracks they are by asking ‘When You Are A King’?! Or is that just a random idea of my own? Well either way i’m not going to name all the tracks in question, that way everybody can play along! Disc3 starts with a rather wonderful version of Elvis’s ‘Suspicion’ by the loony ex Bonzo member Vivian Stanshall and again features name acts in David Essex, Bay City Rollers, Middle Of The Road, Peter Skellern & Kenny. There are some strong runners up in Butterscotch with ‘Don’t You Know’, B J Arnau ‘I Want To Go Back There Again’ (she appeared in the Bond film Live & Let Die as a nightclub singer) & Fickle Pickle ‘California Calling’. I was disappointed with the last choice as Fickle Pickle did an amazing version of McCartneys ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ which would have been good to have on here. As ever the packaging and accompanying booklet are first class and in the case of the booklet very informative and will give you the answers to all those ‘fictitious” bands i mentioned earlier. For those that collect the, lost, obscure, novelty and downright wacky side of 70’s pop this will go down a treat, for others it may be a case of too much candyfloss. Enjoy.

For more information go to https://www.cherryred.co.uk

Til next time………………stay safe….Colin

 

Louis Wiggett… I have the Kincade album, not bad in places.

Mick O’Dowd… Agghh… Leap Up & Down…. What a classic?

Paul Gray… I’ve ordered this and really looking forward to hearing stuff I haven’t heard for 50 years! Grapefruit Records do some fantastic compilations very lovingly put together.

Colin Bell… Excellent Paul, enjoy!

Mick O’Dowd… I am coming out (We know a song about that don’t we children?) No not what you think. I am publically admitting to liking this sort of music. Novelty songs, Bubblegum (Kassenetz Katz where are you? Crazy Elephant). Have to try and get hold of a copy.

Colin Bell… We’ll share the ridicule of our peers together mate

 

Budgie & The Sex Pistols – Hastings Pier 3rd July 1976

supplied by Sarah Harvey

photos supplied by Michael Johansson.

Michael says… Budgie 1976. Second picture 68 Milward Rd 1976

Sarah Harvey…..Was talking to the fella’ who services my boiler the other day and his lasting memory of Hastings Pier was this gig. He said the Sex Pistols were pile of poo and got practically booed off the stage…. everyone had come to see Budgie. Also amused me about the Wrestling and some those that were household names during the 70s.

Bobby Walker….I was there. Had gone to see Budgie, as had become a huge fan after seeing them supporting Genesis on the Pier (never got to see that much of Genesis as spent their set chatting to Budgie in the bar).  The Pistols were an almost completely unknown entity at the time – Danny Baker had mentioned them once in the NME.  They were on stage for less than 20 minutes. They couldn’t play. They played “(I’m Not Your) Stepping Stone” three times and definitely played The Stooges “No Fun”.  They were, without doubt, the most exciting live band I’d ever seen.  Think there was only one punk in the audience. A really nice bloke who called himself Sid Vicious.
A friend, Marianne (sadly no longer with us), was so impressed with the Pistols at that gig she changed her name and formed her own band – she became Poly Styrene and the band was X-Ray Spex
Two weeks later, The Stranglers played support to the Frankie Miller Band and got the same poor reception, despite being quite brilliant. Remember only three of us were on our feet during the Stranglers … me, Gary Paine and John Storer (who I met again a couple of years back – he’s now a lawyer)
We got invited backstage by Hugh Cornwell from the stage and he called the rest of the audience “wankers”.

Jane Hartley…..Oh yes, I was at the Rosko night, still got the ciggie he gave me!

Mick O’Dowd…..Most people when asked about The Pistols appearing on The Pier thought they were the headliners when in fact they were only the support. They never did reappear on the Pier.

Martyn Baker…..My girlfriend at the time was dead keen for us to see The Sex Pistols that night. I’d never heard of them , so I said “nah, let’s go down The Anchor instead”! Missed opportunity?

Paul Morfey… I was there, wondering what the hell was going on, green hair and safety pins!

Dave Weeks… Me too

Ernest Ballard… Sex pistols supporting Budgie ?

Neil William Michael McGuigan… It was quite a night. Pistols were virtually unknown at the time outside of London and a few mentions in NME. Only 2 punks in the crowd, Sid and the blonde from SEX Kings Road

Peter Houghton… Think I saw Budgie a couple of times on the pier

Alan Esdaile… Have them listed as playing 8 times on the pier.

Tony Court-holmes… twice saw them both times i think they were the support for Genesis

Nigel Ford… I was there too and there was a group of their friends / fans (more than 2) down the front wearing safety pins and pogoing and spitting so I kept well back, thinking “Huh, they’ll never make it as their ‘music’ was so lack-lustre”… a more anaemic looking bunch I’ve never seen when they all came in the bar afterwards. BUDGIE were their brilliant heavy, tight unit as always and played some from their new album aswell as going back to their first, I think. This being about the 6th time I’d seen them in Hastings maybe more as the first time was in 1970 when I bought their eponomous, 1st album on the strength of their performance from Big Al at the DISC JOCKEY, 2 Queens Road.

photo: Stuart Richard Meadows, shared by Chris Boorman

Stuart Richard Meadows… Good day. This is probably the rarest SEX PISTOLS related poster I’m ever likely to have in my possession. A real gem from mid 1976 with heavy rockers BUDGIE being the headline act. Admission to the gig being only a quid which in this day and age seems quite remarkable. Only a few months after this gig, the Pistols would become public enemy number one and spark a huge musical revolution, inspiring loads of kids up and down the country to pick up instruments and blow away the drabness that had become the mid 70s.

Gerry Fortsch… My mum and wife were on the pier in the afternoon when the Pistols did a sound check, when they came home they both told me that they had heard the worst band ever, the rest is history.

Stuart Moir… They were shit but they made a lot of cash

Dave Weeks… Budgie were great, Pistols were shite and nobody really knew what the F they were all about. It was a good chance to watch the lightning out to sea though

Alan Esdaile… Not sure about this poster. As soon as the posters went up for this gig Bob Knights the pier manager went berserk and called it obscene, ripped the poster down and got someone else to rip all the other posters displayed, down. I’ve just checked with the promoter Barry Taylor and he doesn’t recognise this as being the poster he did and said he would not have written London. Pretty sure on the original poster Sex Pistols was in big bold type.

Peter Fairless… Pretty sure it’s fake Alan

Chris Boorman… Yes agree that it’s likely to be fake. When was Mason’s music started? Looked at a website and it says 1978. I think it’s been photoshopped over another poster.

Alan Esdaile… I did have a shop on the pier at that time Chris but don’t think I was selling tickets, as they would have been available from the box office on the pier and also would have thought Disc Jockey would have sold tickets as well.

Colin Bell… Im no expert but that doesn’t look ‘right’ to me.

Pete Fairless… Here’s the actual flyer…

Alan Esdaile… Also Barry Taylor can’t confirm the authenticity of this ticket, which appeared recently.

 

Spencer Davis R.I.P.

photo: https://www.discogs.com/artist/383912-Spencer-Davis

more informationhttps://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-54619718

John Gale… Sad news

Alan King… here’s my old mate and sometime band member Miller Anderson playing with Spencer back in ’07 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ji2RIXWywrY

Stephen Moran… That’s very sad, my dad and Spencer worked together in Holborn, London in the fifties in what was then called Customs and Excise. Apparently Spencer came round to our house when I was very young to look at a mandolin that my dad owned. I think my dad was hoping Spencer would buy it! RIP Spencer

Yvonne Ellis… RIP love to Family and friends x x

Mike Waghorne… RIP

Allan Testot-newick… What a great band very sad

Roy Winchester… very sad news he was great.r.i.p.

Colin Bell… I thought Autumn ’66 was one of the best albums of the 60’s. RIP Spencer.

Alan Esdaile… Very sad news.

Keith Veness… Sad news

Jacquie Hinves… God bless him. Such a lovely man. Ray Fenwick will miss him , we all will . RIP and “keep on running”

Gerry Fortsch… More bloody sad news, one of my favorite bands from the 60’s when some others were playing mamby pamby pop.

Pete Houghton… So sad to hear this news RIP Spencer Davis

Stuart Moir… One of the hop bands we supproted. All my hero musicians are going to the band above RIP Spencer

Dennis Torrance… A great shame, made some amazing music which I grew up with. RIP Spencer condolences to his family and friends

Mick O’Dowd… Sad news indeed.

Steve Thorpe… RIP

Robert Carey… Coincidence. I was watching Here we go round Mulberry Bush today featuring Spencer. Great film of time and that music.

Alan King… last time I saw him he was playing with Long John Baldry ! at the Fairfield Halls, must have been 20 years ago

 

 

Shaft Film – Orion Cinema – 22nd October 1972

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shaft

Shaft Film – Orion Cinema October 1972. Came out in 1971 so may have been shown at the Gaiety Cinema first. I expect Nick Prince might know? Great Soundtrack.

Matt Thomas… Shaft or Chef???

Nick Prince… Had a week in both Classic 1 and 2 during July 1971 and a week at Curzon, St Leonards in September 1971. If the Orion ran a first run film in Hastings it was made very clear in their advertising in between the date/number of days of run and actors/ film title…

Alan Pepper… Who’s that black private dick who’s a sex machine to all the chicks ? SHAFT !! Can you dig it ? I’ve still got the album on the great Stax Label . Great stuff !

Martin Richter… got the album

Tony Court-holmes… I saw it, soundtrack Issac Hayes and Superfly soundtrack Curtis Mayfield.

The Bathing Pool Holiday Camp closed 22nd October 1986

Shared from Hastings and Area, Past and Present facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/HAPP1066/

Hastings Area Past and Present say…It’s 22nd October 1986 and on this day the Bathing Pool Holiday Camp closed. Leaseholder Cllr. Dennis Carrington sold the last two years of his lease back to the council because they said they wanted to build a marina there. But they did not. The pool had struggled since its opening to be financially viable, without success. The site now lay forlorn, quiet and derelict for nearly 7 years with no occupation of any kind. Intruders had eventually forced their way into the site on many occasions, destroying the complete complex beyond any economical repair. Lead, copper, brass and bronze, more or less anything of salvage value was removed and presumably sold on. If this could have been caught on camera it would have given the first impressions that a bomb had dropped on the site. The greater majority of the 2,500 seats had been ripped from their mountings and thrown into the pool area, doors were ripped off, lights and conduits pulled from walls and ceilings, the list is absolutely endless. There was now only one solution for the complex, sadly – to pull it down! It had been left far too long to plough large amounts of money back into an upgrade that probably wouldn’t have worked anyway, in trying to bring the pool complex into the 2Ist century, and to fulfil the requirements of the day would never have happened. The site was now a top priority for the Council, as the complex was now an absolute disgrace in so much as it was a danger to the public, the area was scattered with broken glass and debris that laid all around. Its ultimate demise was decided upon very quickly – it was to be demolished in the May of 1993. Sources: http://hastingschronicle.net/key-events/1980-onwards/ and Hastings – Looking Back To The Future, A Tribute to Sidney Little by Richard Pollard from where I have also scanned the photographs with permission from the author.

Carol Paffett… Enjoyed swimming and sun bathing there

Eric Harmer… It also had squash courts I first started playing

Lucy Pappas… Me too, Eric. It was the only way the High School could get some of us to do any exercise! x

Eric Harmer… It’s a great game Lucy. I don’t know why people don’t play it any more. A lot of us played it back in the day. X

Paul Crimin… My Dad brought my brother and I down from London to spend a week at that holiday camp when I was a youngster. It was a nightmare!

Mick Carlisle Savage… Take it he forgot to take you home

Chris Meachen…  Loved swimming and diving there..

Mick O’Dowd… Spent many an hour in there swimming. I learn’t to swim in the shallow bit.

Mel Hayes… Loved it there. Used to visit Grandparents there on their holidays !

Betty Austin… Me to back in the late fifties with Crowhurst youth club and friends x

Alan Pepper… I too miss this place . Many a good time spent there swimming in the late 60’s early 70’s with friends from school . Never did manage to brave the top diving board ! Wouldn’t mind but the area is a waste of space now and feel a bit sad whenever we walk by it !!

Jan Warren… Yeah, sad ending for this lovely place, my ex-hubby worked there in the early 70s, also ran the disco, happy days!

Stuart Tanner… I worked there, great times, Saturday was best when you carried the luggage up to the chalets and hopefully got a big tip, also started playing squash there!