Anyone remember a 60’s Bexhill group called The Spirits?

David Betts asks… I was in a band called The Spirits,in Bexhill in the sixties and would like to track down any pictures that anyone might have or memories.Band line up was me,Dave Betts ,lead guitar,Colin Watford vocals, Dave Neal bass,Johnny Orchard rhythm guitar and Dave Gibbs drums.Hope this might ring some bells.

Alan Esdaile… Not Johnny and The Spirits, Dave, who supported The Rattles on the pier?

David Betts… No sorry not them.

Dave Nattress… The Spirits – sort of. Bexhill. Dave are you the brother of Sue Betts? Went to school with Sue from infant to Downs Secondary Modern and my old dad, long gone was a friend of Jack Neal who I think was Dave’s dad. Pretty sure Sue had an older brother who played guitar. Also, what I definitely remember is a graffiti of “The Spirits” on a wall by the Downs Secondary School – girls side back then. It was there for a long time – early band graffiti like I say, faced out by the footpath that led to the kitchen/dining room. All, a very long time ago.

David Betts… That’s me,Sue still lives in London Rd the graffiti was on the old railway arch.

Phillip Earle… I’m sorry to tell you that Dave Neal passed away at the end of last year after a long illness.

David Betts… Sorry to hear that,Dave and me were schoolboy buddies an knocked around together. I remember a Stuart Earle and Earle’s bakery, any relation?

Laurie Cooksey… Dave Betts was in my class briefly at B’hill Down Boys’ School and I remember he lived in a white weatherboard cottage in Belle Hill, just above Barrack Road, long since demolished. The Spirits were the first live band I ever saw and it was on the same Sat eve that Brian Poole and the Tremeloes performed their 1st single, ‘Twist little sister’ on Thank Your Lucky Stars. The Spirits’ gig was at Victoria Hall, Town Hall Square, Bexhill. The Spirits’ painted name remained on a brick wall next 2 the Downs Infant school until not that very long ago. Hope that’s of interest. I’d love 2 meet up with Dave again. Best wishes, Laurie.

Sarah Whites… The Spirits…what a band!! Often had ‘gigs’ in halls around the town and in Sidney. I especially remember them playing in the hall opposite St Peter’s in the Old Town. The mid 60’s were very special!! Does anyone remember the monthly ‘Beat Raves’ at the De La Warr?? I think organised by a very enterprising Malcom Christmas??…. Some fantastic bands. Long John Baldry, The Foundations?? The Spirits were very close to my heart and very very sad to hear about Dave Neal. Dave Betts, I think had a sister called Marie who was a professional dancer in London?? I remember the graffiti….the band had a very strong and loyal local following.

Tony Court-holmes… i think you mean sidley not sidney thats a hell of a way to go for a gig

David Betts… Still searching for pics of the band from that era if you ever come across any,let me know.I still get down to Bexhill at least once a year.

Jane Kenyon Bell… I remember the Spirits and went to school with the Betts and the Christmas’ as mentioned above at Bexhill Downs. I saw Long John Baldry there (actually a search on him led me to this page). Unfortunately I don’t have any photos of the Spirits.

David Gibb… So pleased to find this Dave. I joined The Spirits together with Johnnie Orchard, or perhaps he introduced me to you. We were at school together at Bexhill Grammar. (Sadly, I found out a few weeks ago on a nostalgia trip, the school is now nothing but a row of iron railings.) What great times with The Spirits. Sadly I have no pictures of the band either. I joined Tony Kenward’s band the Defiants in Eastbourne with Noel d’Abo after leaving your band. We eventually toured Europe for a few years, changing bands from time to time, as was normal at the time, but I finally left the music business in 1968. It was the most amazing time to be young and playing music. Every town on the south coast, and many villages too had umpteen live music pubs or clubs or theatres, and if we weren’t playing we would be watching one of the other local bands. Just great to see you are still around Dave. I now live to the west of London, but long retired, so do get in touch if you would like to meet up for some “Do you remembers” (My answers are likely to be ‘I don’t think so’ though.)