Hastings Pier latest photos – 18th September 2014

10649713_730855133616693_5705990363194347280_n Pier_View

 supplied by Pete Fairless and second photo Pier webcam

Pete Fairless… ARAN250, MTS Vulcan & MTS Vector. The crane barge has arrived to remove the remains of our ballroom…

Tony Qunta…Great to see!

Robert Searle… Its lovely knowing something is being done for the pier.

Andy Qunta… Excellent!

Alan Esdaile… Its still going to be sad to see the ballroom finally disappear. Many a happy evening spent on the pier, brilliant times. Anyone got any memories to post here of the pier ballroom or favourite band seen, etc?

Hastings Pier taken from the air – September 2014. By Phil Astell. 10th Sept 2014. Thanks to Kevin Burchett for finding this…

and BBC News report via Kevin Burchett…


Alan Esdaile… and here what the pier looks like today (20th Sept). This I took this afternoon.


Last chance to take a photo of the old Pier Ballroom before the barge removes it, in Sept 2014.


photo taken September 2013 by Alan Esdaile

supplied by The Battle For Hastings Pier  Facebook page…..

Construction update 20th August 2014

We are almost 40% of the way through the project; labour on site is now in excess of 40 and continuing to increase. Progress has been good with the favourable weather conditions. On the Parade Extension, 62 of the 64 trusses to be replaced have been completed as well as approximately 250 deck beams. This means that we have renewed more than one third of the structure and two thirds of the decking has been renewed. On the central section 16 of the 78 trusses have been replaced with trusses and decking following on.

The refurbishment of the Bandstand Pavilion has started. A complete new support structure has been inserted beneath the building. The building has been stripped out, temporary supports are being inserted and the floor will now be removed and reconstructed. The next stage is to remove the roof and construct the new zinc roof. The jack-up barge will be arriving in early September; from this we will start the demolition of the Ballroom. It will also be used to re-instate the columns and beams at the Pier Head that were destroyed in the February storm. We expect the barge to be here for about four weeks.

The old balustrade that was removed from the East side has been shot blasted, de-salinated, and repaired. It is now going through the painting process and will be brought back to the Pier in three week time. The next significant operation will be the piling for the Visitor Centre, which is being finalised and should be carried out in September. The new steel support structure will then follow and the laminated timber building erected on top.

Mark Edir… “take away the old ballroom ” ???

Kevin Burchett….its now sitting off winchesea i think its waiting for the tide to go into rye harbour to pick up a crane and supposed to be in hastings on monday when i last looked it wasnt showing on www.marinetraffic.com only the tug towing it mts vulcan 2

Andre Martin…. Safest way to remove all the debris at the sea end of the Pier, and to carry out the steel workings also required to make that end safe – Simon Opie CEO Pier Trust was telling us about this part of the operation earlier in the week – fingers crossed for good weather for the next couple months


Alan Esdaile… Took these photos today 13th Sept 2014. Pier ballroom, its still their! I thought the Tardis had landed but on closer inspection its a portaloo?  It doesn’t look like any flooring under it, so hope they won’t be going straight into the sea.

Redstar Ritcher…when you gotta go…..? surely not – one man`s piss has gotta go inland – up the road to the bus-stop – along the Bexhill road and out into the sea – water companies gotta keep the shareholders happy – and a free ear-infection with every dip !

Matt Thomas… ha ha ha I had noticed that as well

Pete Fairless… I  suppose that bloody Doctor is going to claim he was at the Pistol/Hendrix/Stones/Who gigs, now?

Andre Martin… Now Now Pete – we have the ability to re-write History lol

Gary Kinch… That portaloo has got to be an improvement on the original ballroom loos.


Glenn Cornick R.I.P. – original Jethro Tull bassist, dies aged 67



Clive Richardson….Glenn Cornick was brilliant on the pier with ‘Wild Turkey’ in 1973. The best gig ever.

Trish N Kevin Sherwood…Yes they were excellent that night, a great player.

Mick Mepham… They were indeed hemstrand! Sad to hear of his passing :{

John Wilde… Glenn. Brilliant. Thank you man.

Pete Prescott… I saw him a few times with Wild Turkey. He stood out if only for his style of dress. Sad.

Chris Sambrook…Wild Turkey didn’t they support Ten Years After on the Pier, Glenn Cornick was a brilliant Bass Player. Especially on the first 3 Jethro Tull albums.

John Wilde… Was Glenn in Tandoori Cassette?  any clue?

Alan Esdaile… Don’t think he was in Tandoori Cassette, unless anyone knows different. This is all I could find….A early 80s short lived rock band formed by Barriemore Barlow. After leaving Tull in 1980, he formed the short-lived “Tandoori Cassette” with Zal Cleminson of Nazareth, Charlie Tumahai, and Ronnie Leahy, the keyboard player with Stone The Crows.

Gary Kinch… I remember Wild Turkey on the pier. I remember thinking at the time he don’t half look like Chris Meachen.

Janine Anne Hemsley… What a loss xx

John Wilde… Barriemore was who I was thinking of. Expandis supported Tandoori Cassette around 83 at the Marquee. They were brilliant.

Clive Richardson… Wild Turkey appeared on the pier twice in 1973, 7th March with Jailbait and 18th August with Daisy. My favourite track is ‘One Sole Survivor’.

Pete Prescott… I saw wild Turkey at the Albert Hall supporting Black Sabbath and at sittingbourne town hall then supporting gentle giant at Central hall chatham. Loved the band especially the singer Gary pickford hopkins. My favorite track was good old days. Bernie marsden was with them when I saw them. Very sad.

Phil Thornton… I thought Zal Cleminson was from the sensational Alex Harvey Band ? …… and wasent the rest of the Tandoori Cassette line up from Bebop delux ?

The Honeycombs – Hastings Pier 29th August 1964 by Andre Martin

Andre Martin…Here we are at the end of August 1964, and what an exciting month that has been for us in Hastings – this is Saturday 29th, and we are back at the Happy Ballroom, for the next episode of its musical history. Has the Pier management decided to start the fight back against the new local competition, and start booking bands that are building their own reputations, this week we have The HoneyCombs and the support from Brighton – Shelly – formerly known as The Sabres, who were about to embark on a future playing in Europe, and would become top names in both Denmark and Scandinavia within the next few years. This was to be one of the last appearance from the band in Hastings.
The Top of the Bill, The HoneyCombs – started in November 1963 as an amateur band founded by Martin Murray, Its members were Murray, a hairdresser, his salon assistant Honey Lantree her brother John and two friends, Originally they called themselves the Sheratons. The group played dates in the West End of London, and at the Mildmay Tavern a North London pub. Among those attending an appearance of the band in February 1964 were aspiring songwriters Ken Howard and Alan Blaikley. Howard and Blaikley would become a prolific British songwriting team, writing songs recorded by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich, the Herd, Lulu and even Elvis Presley, but in 1964 they had just started their career They got into conversation with the group, which appeared interested in a few songs the duo had just written. The group had already arranged an audition with indie record producer Joe Meek The audition resulted in a recording of Howard and Blaikley’s “Have I the Right?”. Meek himself provided the B-side, “Please Don’t Pretend Again”.
“Have I the Right?” was released in June 1964 on the Pye record label. Louis Benjamin Pye’s later chairman rechristened the group The Honeycombs, a pun on the drummer’s name and her job as a hairdresser’s assistant. The sales started slowly, but by the end of July the record started to climb in the UK Singles Chart. At the end of August the record reached No. 1. “Have I the Right?” was also a big success outside the UK, hitting No. 1 in Australia and Canada, No. 5 in the US ] and No. 2 in the Netherlands. Overall sales of the record reached a million. The Honeycombs also recorded a German version of the song: “Hab ich das Recht?” Both the English and the German versions reached No 21 in the German charts: the English one in October, the German one in November 1964. That would have made the Pier Managements day – with a No 1 Hit record recording group playing in the Happy Ballroom. Elswhere the competiton at the Witch Doctor would have been the regular 7 nights a week, plus Sunday afternoon offering with such artistes this week as Neil Langdon & The Burnetts, Dave Champion & The Strangers, Peters Fables and Danny Mitchell & The Sound Sensations. Top billing that week would have been on the Sunday with Alexis Korner R&B Incorporated featuring Herbie Goins. The Weekend would have started off with the regular TV trip to Kingway London for Ready Steady Go, and on this weeks show —Gerry and the Pacemakers – “It’s Gonna Be Alright.” –Dusty Springfield – “Can I Get A Witness?”–Mark Wynter – “Love Hurts.”–Lulu – “Can’t Hear You.”—Filmed acts appearing “Rag Doll” (Four Seasons record).–a “You Never Can Tell” (Chuck Berry record). So that it for this week everybody – now looking forward to September 1964 and all that will hold for us in Hastings & St Leonards !       Andre Martin

Andy Qunta… ‘Have I The Right’ – Another gem!

Rolling Stones – Hastings Pier 1964 – Memories wanted

stones 1st

Richard Houghton… 50 years ago this month the Rolling Stones played a show at the Pier Ballroom in Hastings. I’m compiling a people’s history of the Stones and if any of your readers would like to share their memories of the concert I’d love to hear from them. I can be contacted via email at richardmhoughton@gmail.com or by writing to me at 32 Manor Avenue, Preston, PR2 8DN.

Mickey Finn and The Blue Men – Hastings Pier 15th Aug 1964 by Andre Martin


mickey finn

all cuttings Andre Palfrey-martin collection

Andre Martin… Are we sitting comfortably, now is the time for the next episode of the History of The Happy Ballroom on Hastings Pier, its Saturday 15th August 1964, the excitement of the Bank Holiday has now gone, although the moaning and groaning of the authorities still continues. Bt we have 2 groups on the Pier tonight – headlining are Mickey Finn and The Blue Men, and in support, another of our regulars Earl Sheriden and the House Shakers. 8.00pm – 11.45pm all for 6/- [ 30 pence in todays money] plus the benefit of the breezy walk to and from the ballroom, and the use “of the Longest Bar in Town”
Here is some background to the headliners – Mickey Waller, also known by the stage name Mickey Finn, was an English guitarist. He started out with instrumental band “The Strangers” in Bethnal Green, East London, in the Summer of 1961. In 1963 Waller adopted the name Mickey Finn – after having heard about the drummer named Micky Waller – and joined with John “Fluff” Cooke (keyboards), John Burkett (bass), Alan Marks (lead vocals) and Richard Brand (Drums) to form “Mickey Finn & The Blue Men”, who released their debut single in January 1964. Jimmy Page recorded with the band over the following months. With Burkett replaced by first Mick Stannard in late 1965 and then Rod Clark, the band were renamed “The Mickey Finn” in 1966. They released four more singles, the last of which, “Garden Of My Mind”, is their most well known song and has become a cult favourite despite failing to chart at the time.
Over in the Kingsway Studios in London RSG was well received last night – Friday 14th August, with a really good line up. Including – scheduled guests: –Georgie Fame –Swinging Blue Jeans–The Naturals – “I Should Have Known Better” –Alexis Korner and Blues Incorporated –Johnny Milton and the Condors –Julie Grant.
Along the prom at the Witch Doctor, the crowds were still being pulled in by the 7 nights a week programme Saturday – Denny Saten & The Sabers with The Hustlers : Sunday – John Best and The Challengers : Wednesday – Grant Tracy & The Sunsets and Friday The Discs. Plus – Records on the other nights. Ticket prices between 1/6d and 6/- and everybody out to catch the last bus home ! How things have changed.                                            Andre Martin

Robert Searle… A good find.

Tich Turner & John Wilde together in Steppin’ Out – 1977



Martyn Baker… In case John Alexander Wilde was feeling left out from my earlier comments about great soul singers from Hastings…. Here he is singing dual lead vocals with Tich Turner. For one night only in 1977 the two ex-“Stallion” lead vocalists singing together on Hastings Pier singing in the band Steppin’ Out. (From a very rare live tape). Recorded live on Hastings Pier c.1977. The band on that night were:- Tich Turner – vocal,  Johnny Wilde – vocal,  Roger Hubbard – guitar and vocal, Stevie Whitefield – guitar and vocal, Wesley Magoogan – saxes and vocal,  Andy Knight – Drums, Martyn Baker – Bass

Pete Prescott…  ran into kevin hoad last night at porters. We talked briefly about steppin outs photo session by winkle Island. It was the day after lynyrd skynrds plane crash in 77.i would love to see a photo from that session. I was a very inexperionced young singer completely out of his depth.i had never sung harmonies before. But l loved the band and learned a lot.i moved to Hastings on Christmas Eve 77. The band broke up on new years eve ha ha ! Ray fenwick had organised a recording using tich and wes plus session players in london.no other members were involved. Wes (as I recall ) was having none of that (good on him! ) he and tich had a fair old barny. End of band. Tich did the session. Enter the roaring 80’s. Shame. Amazing band steppin out.i had a fairly miserable few years not really knowing anyone. But it got better. I was very lucky moving to the most amazing town for music in the country. I have a couple õf cassettes of songs. And a few photos. Roger hubbard wrote most of the songs with tich I recall.not completely sure how all that worked. If anyone has any photos I’ll be at the White Rock Hotel Friday.

Martyn Baker… This gig happened just before you joined us Pete Prescott. Before that we had Martin Stringer as our other lead vocalist, John Alexander Wilde was there on this night to help with the transition, but I don’t really think it was his cup of tea, as we heard that he had left the gig before the encore to go directly to Portugal that night!  This song “Hurt Again” by Martin Stringer and Tich Turner. Also featuring Wesley Magoogan, and Andy Knight.

John Wilde… Thanks for the word up Martyn. I have absolutely no memory of this. Tich was/is a great Soul singer and still giving it large! Best wishes to you.

Mick O’Dowd… Tich was a good soul singer that’s why I signed him up for Deep Purple.