SMART Coffee Meet no. 61. Friday 22nd July 2022.

You are most welcome to join us.

Mick O’Dowd… Now time once again to call on all you SMARTIES to answer the call to meet other SMARTIES at the above. Remember you can only become a real SMARTIE if you come to a Meet! It is painless and completely free to join! Just come along. No more excuses! Be there or miss it!

Who remembers playing over the West Hill rocks in Hastings?

Alan Esdaile… photo, me and my sister.

Bernard Goffredo… Spent a lot of time there when little

Cris Kennard…. Yes but didn’t tell mum and dad.

Linda Lowcock… me too !!

Lucy Pappas… Yes, despite being told not to!

John Gale… Always over there,,, its a glorified toilet these days,,,,, I was shocked a few years back, went to have a look and it was full of all sorts of 💩. And stunk. ,,,,, real shame as it was a real adventurous little place ,,,, with hint of danger,,, actually very dangerous

Dennis Torrance… I played there as a child no fear of danger look at it now it scares me called that area bats cave expect other s called it different

Lloyd Johnson… Use to play over there with Alan And Johnny Mitchell in the mid 50s and with Kenny Comfort,Melvyn & Lynn Grant…remember Melvyn managing to climb to the cave on the left…

Despo Hawkins… Yes , it was our back yard

Jeanette Jones… Yes

Michelle Coco Selmes… Yes I lived in the houses opposite and knew every rock!

Julie Morris… I worked in the West Hill cafe as a teenager and had to phone for an ambulance several times because of accidents on the rocks!

Phil Gill… Yup, every Saturday after ABC Minors.

Anton Ludwig… Yep, and the little caves in old town

Matt Thomas… Spent most of my teenage years over them, my name is scratched in one of the rocks somewhere

Monica Bane… Yes what was the game? One to three I see you?

Helena Kingshott… Meeee

Steve Fox… Oh yes! Used to live in Hill Street

Colin Bell… Looking at the photo now, i can only repeat my previous comment, how didn’t i die, jumping from one rock to another with my mates as a kid!

Mick O’Dowd… Same here

Jacqueline Marsh… Same here, my mum and dad would have gone spare if they knew what me, my sister and our cousins were up to on those rocks. I couldn’t do it now!!

Ralph Town… Yep,my mum was on valium after she saw me climb down there. Interestingly, the rocks seem to be developing large amounts of bracken,which,I assume means no one climbs them now.

Colin Bell… They’ve probably got more sense than we had Ralph, i wouldn’t trade places though! Being glued to a PS4 or whatever doesn’t appeal the same.

Ralph Town… I just think they’re a bunch of snowflakes.I never got hurt but a friend of mine sprained her ankle badly. The only part that really put fear in me was down the far end behind the Deluxe. It must have been 100 foot fall round the back of those amusements if I slipped but there was a huge cave, under the castle, that I would always use as a den. Few friends came with me due to a very thin ledge to get to it. Lovely view tho.

Yvonne Ellis… Yes!

David Edwards… Used to go from Priory Road school lunchtimes, remember someone took a tumble and we were banned after that.

Keith Veness… Remember it’s overgrown now

Paul Slidel… Yep, great fun! Lived in Portland Place when I was around 11-12 years old, so this was my playground!

Kev Carleonis… Yep

Steve Thorpe… Used to climb them during school outdoor pursuits lessons and the smaller ones on the Silverdale School playing field.

Dave Nattress… Definitely –  used to take my two daughters Katie and Emily there and walked around on top and carefully jumped from rock to rock.  They were fascinated.  Always a touch bothered about falls as they would have been about 10  and 8 but we were careful.  I remember them complete with teletubby backpacks.  The Red and Yellow ones.  Dipso and Smelly Winkie or whatever their names were.  Remember it well.

Patrick Turner… We used to climb up to the cave regularly. My friend Micky Hodges fell and broke a bone, can’t remember if it was arm or leg.

Cule Tulo… Yes! Lost a few friends over there !

Barry French… Moved from Essex to Hastings in 1967. On my first trip to the Old Town I climbed on the rocks, went on the bumper cars & had chips & ice cream (separately). I thought I’d arrived in heaven.

Monica Bane… And me Alan. Looking so dangerous now!

Jackie Hersee… I fell down them in the’50’s

Keith Veness… Loved playing there

David Edwards…Yep!

Dennis Torrance… Played on them rocks a lot. I expect there was several names for that cave, I called it bats cave . I remember a little higher up a really small dangerous ledge how me and mates did it many times, no fear

Dawn… Yep, played there many a time, my dad’s fault as he took me there first time – but never to tell my mum!  He he. Took the grandchildren over there a few years ago – they loved it but obviously it was a little more daunting for me now I’m older – oh to be young again

 

School days – blackboard rubber thrown at you?

source: unknown

Alan King… almost all of the above

Mike Waghorne… Mr Thyne our maths teacher at the Downs secondary use to throw them at us if not paying attention ! And I would say all of those !

Mike Guy… Sent outside the classroom [once for raising my hand to ask a question, ear twisted for talking, lines, hit on hand with ruler[s] – they kept breaking, detention. I deserved just about all of it as I was bright but with lack of focus, & didn’t make the most of education until after I’d worked for 7 years, then managed to get into university. At least I grew up eventually. 🙂 Oh & became a teacher!

Barry Newton… Most of the above, never had the hat treatment but did have broken eardrum due to slap round ear, still gives me problems from time to time.

Neal Hunter… All of those the teachers at priory boys school were experts in punishment.

Pete Fisher… Not funny…

Andy Davies… Some teachers were pretty mean at the Grammar School, terrified of being hit in the head with a board rubber, many teachers had a slipper in their desks too…

Mick O’Dowd… All part of growing up! Never did me any harm any harm any harm….

David Edwards… All bar dunces cap never saw one at Priory Road.

Virginia Davis… Some of the teachers at Hastings High School seemed to relish dishing out some of these. Its still regularly discussed when we have a reunion.

Peter Howard… “I must not under any circumstances forget to do my mathematics homework”

Phil Foley… All except dunces cap,didn’t have that at my grammar school. One particularly evil punishment was standing with outstretched arms whilst holding two or three of those long wooden “set-square” things they used in Technical Drawing classes. Can’t remember how long we were made to do this but it felt like eternity! But we got our own back by inserting Swan Vesta heads in the grooves between the felt pads of the blackboard rubber

Nick Bearkeeper Rowland… There were some sadists at my school. One boy was caned until he bled and the school made an out of court settlement. I got the ruler and was made to stand in the corner because I had extreme difficulties with maths.

Chris Boorman… I remember having a bit of wood thrown at me at school (Priory Road) which caused a slight cut on my head. I was taken to hospital as a precaution. When a teacher explained to my mum what had happened she said “well, I expect he deserved it”

Alan Parker… Happened once in my class back in the ’60s. picked it up and threw it back , he never did it again

Merv Kennard… Alan do you remember mr t and his rubber hose or mr h and his old plimsol with the h in a circle ?

Alan Esdaile… Also remember Mr Brown and Percy The Slipper!

Gill Ives… We had a teacher in junior school that used to twist a sharpened pencil into your shoulder

Alan Pepper… At the Grove in 1970 I was given an accidental nosebleed in the French lesson by a teacher who threw the blackboard duster at me . Before that in the 60’s the lovely sadistic Catholic Nuns at St Mary’s enjoyed giving the cane over our hand .

Conan Howard… Yes many times at grove park school in grove park school Bromley

Lyn Humphrey… At the Downs in Bexhill, Messrs Peckham & Nattress will also recall Mr T regularly chucking the blackboard rubber and the chalk at us!

Jan Warren… Hi you naughty schoolkids, here’s a lovely pic of the beautiful, but sadly demolished, Downs County Secondary school : and what about Mr Evans (Headteacher), “Taffy” Thomas (Deputy Head Teacher), Mr Thynne (Maths), Mr Slater (Geography), Mr Vale (Maths), Mr Rye (RE), Mrs Miller(Art), Mrs Grimes (History), Miss Wignall (Domestic Science), Mr Bone (French), Miss Mills (PE), Mrs Blakemore (English), Miss Elsworth (Music), Miss Watkin-Jones, and many more, can you remember?? – but not forgetting the irreplaceable Mr Warren, the ever committed Care-Taker who kept the school running “ship-shape” at all times, my brilliant DAD!!

Pete Houghton… Hi Jan so many names Their was Mr Brookes Art Mr Hill English Mrs Warburton Domestic Science Their was another Geography teacher next to Mr Slater and the Woodwork Teacher Mr Bridges and Mr Harris Some woman who taught Typing she wore glasses Mr Salter there are a few i can remember And yes your Dad who did a fantastic job xxx

Jan Warren… Hi Pete, thanks for adding some more names to the list of teachers, I remember them all and I’m sure there’s more!! Yes, my Dad was a brilliant Caretaker, that School was his “pride and Joy”!!

 

Dimarco’s Hastings closed on the 9th February 1985

photo from Hastings and Area, Past and Present  https://www.facebook.com/HAPP1066/

HAPP…. 9th February 1985, Dimarco’s closed for good. This is a photo of DiMarco’s on the day they closed, sent by Ann Clifton. Ann added “The gentleman sitting in the right hand corner was the last ever customer, with Michael and Phil Di Marco, Lou and Emily DiPaolo, me and my brothers – Luigi Antonio Di Paolo”.

Dennis Torrance… Such a nice place happy memories there great food and ice cream and milkshakes . My mum worked in the one below St Mary in the castle in early 60s

John Gale… Knickerbocker glory land, loved it there and always welcoming by the Di Marco family , I met some of them at Hastings united games., always enthusiastic fans

Willie Wicking… Many a time spent in there can still remember that distinctive sound of the coffee machines & the blue smoke haze from cigarettes

Liane Carroll… I loved that place very much My Auntie Vera was a waitress there. It was so brilliant. Xxx

Jim Reilly… All us old hooligans used to love DiMarcos, and never misbehaved in there, coz we treated the staff the way the treated us, fairly. Grub was good and reasonably priced too.

Graham Matthews… We lived out in the sticks so school holiday treat was a bus trip to Hastings and lunch in Di Marco’s was always on the list in the 1960’s. Still used it after I left school if I came to town. Loved it.

Pete Houghton… One of my favorites! When i came over from Bexhill for the day

Chris Meachen… Some of my fondest memories are of my dad taking me in there when I was a tot. I used to have an egg & tomato roll (still my favourite filling to this day) followed by an ice cream scooped out of the tubs built into the counter.. I remember ‘Mr louis’ who seemed to know dad quite well. DiMarco’s was always a favourite place to eat, drink a delicious milkshake & meet up with friends, I miss it even now..

Helen Knight… Remember it

Carol Arnold… Loved Dimarcos

Alan Esdaile… Happy memories. Always found the staff friendly and polite.

Patrick Turner… Had many a knickerbocker glory in there

SMART coffee meet no.58 – Friday 10th December 2021

Mick O’Dowd… Be there or be extremely square and probably rectangled too! So there!

Merv Kennard… Hope to there with a newbie

Mick O’Dowd… Sometimes I get the impression that people who are following SMART and say they want to come but always find an excuse not to that they don’t actually know what goes on! It is totally INFORMAL. NO stand up speeches/lectures. If anybody is sitting in the corner we make sure someone rescues them and gets them involved. You talk to who you like . Get a drink/coffee from the bar and just mingle. In his reviews afterwards Alan goes through what he has heard people talking about. Even I am surprised at what has been talked about. Just make the effort and leave the rest to us. EVERYBODY is welcome and we don’t have bouncers on the door in case you look dodgy! Give it a try I don’t think you’ll be disappointed! See you there!

Do you remember Penny for The Guy?

Betty Austin… Oh yes good clean honest fun !! X

Dennis Torrance… Remember I was done up as a guy as a kid, sat in Queens Road and went boo to passers by thanks for the memories

Malcolm Sharp… Dennis was that you yer bugar lol

Linda Crane… Good fun

Tony May…  Would LOVE to see kids taking part in that now. These days they are either on their phones or getting up to no good!

Julie Findlay-jones… Does anyone still do this, it was such fun , the anticipation of wondering how the guys going to turn out and how many penny’s your going to get.

Jane Hartley… We were in the Observer with our guy one year!

Pat Fears… Probably not safe these days !!

Janine Anne Scott… Happy days

Jeff Belton… Remember when I was growing up, used to love making a GUY for bonfire night. Great fun !

Alan Esdaile… If you wanted fireworks, you had to go out and earn some money from your guy. Not a cheap football as a head, as people did in later years. Old clothes stuffed with newspapers, our pitch used to the Whitefriars Pub, Priory Road, as did well when people got of the bus.

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SMART 57 coffee meet report

Our 57th SMART coffee meet and great to catch up with some old faces that we haven’t seen for awhile as well as new ones. Among the newbies this time were Linda Boiling and Dave Nattress. Linda was reminiscing about when she worked in Stylus record shop and had with her the Johnny Lambe Orchestra programme which Stylus promoted at The White Rock Pavilion, as well as a bundle of photos of dj’s and others from ‘Lazybones’ disco from 1977. We will be posting these on the website in the next few days. Good to see Dave Nattress at last! He had with him posters and artwork of Samisen from the 70’s and the group The Charts from 81. He will send me copies of these soon for the website and hopes to find some long lost photos as well. Geoff Peckham was chatting about the recent success of Plumptonfest and the track ‘This Land Is Green’ which proved very popular. Anthony ’Nan’ Morland arrived with some more interesting items. Including photos and autograph of Adam Faith when he was at the Hastings Museum The Mods and The Rockers exhibition in 2007, as well as photos of Mike Berry, The Redcoats and some interesting stories to tell. Merv Kennard had with him Terry James ‘The DeeJay’ keyring from when the shop was in Hastings Indoor Market and a copy of Merv’s Pirate Disco business card. He was in conversation with Lance Collins and Chris Kennard on disco equipment and memories. John Busbridge had a photo album which included some great photos of his groups and club membership cards. Cliff Wootton is still looking for photos and information of groups that used his dads Supersound amps and guitars and pretty sure that they are used in the GT Strokers photos at the Ore Kit Kat Club in 1967. Dave Trodd is working through photo negatives that he took  and in conversation with Jon and Julie McCallion, that it’s possible he took the original promotion photos for ‘Muller’. Elaine & Neil Roberts were chatting to Graham Belchamber about a new group that’s being formed and Graham was talking about his popular radio show and looking for more local groups that he can promote on the air.  Stephen Moran in between chatting to Colin Bell, was busy interviewing people, including Pete Millington, Mick O’Dowd and others for his research into the popular music history of Hastings. General chat was about Malcolm Mitchells, the restaurant plan to replace the toilets in the town centre, booster jabs and Fred Dinenage to leave Meridian.This is just a bit of what I can remember but if you wish to add anything else interesting that you were talking about, then please do. Hopefully plan to get one more meet in before Christmas.

Mick O’Dowd… Great Meet as usual Alan. Nice relaxed Meet. Had a long chat with Stephen Moran. Good stuff!

Tony May… Sounds like a cracking meeting! I’m wondering now whether Linda Boiling was the lady who I went to see The Commodores with at Eastbourne in or about 1985? She was going out with the one-armed electrician B.J. at the time…

Stephen Moran… Thank you Alan

Claire Lonsdale…I really wanted to come but I have been laid up with a nasty cold for a few days and I’m still not back to fighting fit. Hope to get to the next meeting. Xx

Geoff Peckham… Well done, Alan. Thanks for bringing us all together again. x

Tony Davis… Sorry to have missed today Alan

Jim Breeds… Sorry couldn’t make it. Face was all numb from dentist appointment immediately beforehand.

Cliff Wootton… Good to make it back after so long. Had a great time.

Elaine Roberts… Thank you for an enjoyable meet Alan. This is our new band, in case anyone’s interested

https://fb.watch/8PRD68V0BH/

Colin Bell… great to see all of you at the SMART meeting yesterday, kudos as ever to Alan, who works hard to put it on and re-unite people, well done mate.

Linda Boiling… In reply to Tony May… 1985 I had been married to Peter Boiling (Demon Disco, Lazybones) for 7 years and had 2 daughters, I remember the one armed electrician, (didn’t go out with him)and Peter knew him too, I think they worked together at one time. don’t remember going to see the Commodores sorry.

Tony May… It wasn’t you I worked with at Stylus then! (lol) No surprise me not remembering the poor girl I did work with. For 25 years everyone used to tell me I was thoughtless…only because I didn’t know what being thoughtless meant and didn’t care to find out because I WAS thoughtless I carried on regardless! (lol) Hopefully, I’m a tad less self -centred these days – just a tad!

 

 

What comic did you have, when you were a kid?

Julie Findlay-Jones… Twinkle my sister had Jackie

Angela Frances Gardner… Jackie as a teenager, Princess Tina as a youngster!

Jo Turner… Snap

Margaret Fletcher… I had Bunty

Kev Perry… Look in

Peter Brazier… Eagle, TV21, Valiant, Comando, War library, beano, Dandy, what ever I could get with the pocket money I had left after I’d got my Airfix, Frog or Revel model kit lol

Jim Breeds… Dandy, Beano, Tiger at various times, but I regularly had Eagle delivered. Also I was literally just sorting through some old stuff a few minutes ago and came across this. Who remembers TV Tornado? It’s the complete comic from July 1967 that for some reason I still have.

Jan Warren… Look in and Jackie as a teenager and Yogi Bears Own Weekly as a kid

Leigh Wieland-Boys… Bunty & Jackie

Jo Turner… Princess Tina 😊 and my sister had Jackie

Lucy Pappas… Bunty x

Arthur Sutherland… Where is Topper and Beezer

Lyn Humphrey… Ah, comics—now you’re talking my language! Main one was ‘Lion’, with favourite character being ‘Karl the Viking’. Brilliant artwork, that I found out later was by Don Lawrence, a noted artist (and two weeks too late, I discovered he lived 2 miles from my house!). Also had, at various times, the Victor, Eagle, and Beano. They don’t write ’em like that anymore!

Eric Harmer…  Penthouse

Barry Newton… I know you Eric, you only bought it for the pictures, lol

Paul Chapman… Sparky in the early days. But later warlord, eagle, battle picture weekly… commando library

John Sperni… 2000AD… Still got prog 1,2,3

Martin Ralph… Lol,me too. Up to 226

Will Cornell… Mad Magazine. Still laugh out loud thinking over their stuff.

Dennis Torrance… My favourite was The victor like the dandy and beano later got the century 21

Josie Lawson… I had Jackie and Judy which my mum got me…and sometimes read my sisters Bunty. I miss the comics. I used to enjoy which bubble of words should be read, working it out. I know I have seen in Waterstones when I could get out and about, books with a different type of comic. There is a name for these books but can’t remember.
Within the last few years, adult colouring books have taken the scene by storm so to speak. Yes, obviously someone came to their scenes and realised the relaxation with them, adults and children need to colour, but maybe someone should now come out with adult comic books similar to our childhood comics. Before seeing this, I have quite often mentioned this to friends. “Wish I could pick up a comic at the paper shop”…

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SMART Coffee Meet 56 – We’re Back!

Very pleased to say We’re Back! Hope you are all doing OK and keeping well. Our last meeting was back in February 2020 and looking forward to catching up with old friends and new on Friday 3rd Sept at The White Rock Hotel. A big thank you to everyone for keeping the website and facebook page going during these difficult times. Best Regards  Alan

Keeping the memories alive…

Pete Houghton… Great to back

Andy Qunta… Excellent news!

Mick O’Dowd… It was the 3rd of September. A date i’ll always remember…….

Pete Prescott… Looking forward to it!

Wendy Weaver… At last. Normality

Colin Norton… I hope that you guys have a great time and I really wish that I could join you!

Andy Qunta… Colin, what you said! Me too!

Kev Towner… Can you do it on Zoom? LOL

Stephen Moran… Thanks Alan I look forward to seeing you this afternoon.