Birmingham in the 60s
Birmingham was radically developed in the 60s. There was a new ring road system, which, like most city centres, was of a unique design and took practice to master. Smallbrook Ringway, left, was one of the first sections built. The buildings were designed by J A Roberts.
The Bullring Shopping Centre (which has been redeveloped recently) was also a 60s development. It replaced a historic market with a modern design. The Rotunda, also designed by J A Roberts, was started in 1960. It was a circular tower of 24 storeys. There was a rumour that it had a slight list, making it the leaning tower of Brum.
Architectural critic, Ian Nairn, was complimentary about Birmingham and the Bullring. He thought Birmingham was much improved for the development and that the prosperity of the 60s suited Birmingham well.
HRH The Prince of Wales, however, was less than complimentary about the 60s architecture of Birmingham; now there's a surprise.
In 1974, the IRA planted a bomb in the Mulberry Bush Pub situated in the ground floor of the Rotunda. This, and another bomb at the Tavern in the Town in New Street Station, killed 21 people. This incident will forever be known as the Birmingham Pub Bombings.
On a lighter note, I remember a life size model of King Kong in Birmingham in the 70s. I wonder if anyone can shed any further light on this?
Comments on Birmingham in the 50s and 60s
"I grew up in Birmingham in the 1950s and 1960s. There used to be a menswear shop on the corner of Navigation Street and John Bright Street called Chetwyns. If you could afford it, they sold imported suits, jackets, shirts, ties etc directly from the United Sates and loose drape jackets cutaway collar shirts etc. Then in the early sixties the fashion changed. Most young guys got their Italian style suits from Burtons or Colliers, although Chetwyns did survive with the American look. I myself couldn't afford to shop there, but would visit the shop to check out the gear." Andrew Eves
Above Chetwyns was the The Whiskey a Go Go, a club hosting live bands. Local bands played there as well as Motown and R&B bands from the US. Their Friday and Saturday nights went on until 8am the following day. See www.brumbeat.net/letters for more details.
The club above Chetwyns in 1963, before it was Whiskey a Go Go was -- Lora Dixon's: rock and roll, no booze only soft drinks or tea or coffee. The pub in Hill Street and on the corner of Swallow Street was the Eagle, now gone. I have cine film of it. Gordon
I know about Lora Dixon's because I got engaged to a girl I met there in January 1963. Besides I worked for the GPO till mid 62. In 1963 the Beatles appeared on the balcony (above entrance) of the Odeon - new street. I frequented Billy Ponds Dance Studio in Green Lane, Small Heath opposite Millward Street where I lived then. Gordon
On the corner (right) where Coventry road joins Digbeth by the railway bridge and the old flyover was the Dolls Club. A night club at the time where booze could be purchased, entered through turn stiles like at a football ground. This opened in the 50s Gordon
"I remember the big King Kong statue in the Bullring. I believe it is up North somewhere and belongs to a car dealer." Chris J
Some more on Birmingham nightlife in the sixties...
"You might be interested in the night life in Brum in the 1950s/1960s. In the 1950s night life in Brum was very austere due mainly to the fact that Lord Cadbury was on the Birmingham watch committee and being a devout Quaker did not believe in entertainment and booze for the masses. You won't find a pub in Bournville the home of Cadbury. Anyway, when he died Birmingham started to become alive at night. "
"Up until the 1960s there was only really the Westend Ballroom, I believe, in Suffolk Street. There was the Reservoir Ballroom in Reservoir Road, Ladywood. Then, in 1961, they opened the Locarno ballroom at the bottom end of Hill street and Monday night was Rock'n'Roll night. They would play the records of the current top 20 artists. I had just left school so every Monday without fail dressed in my winkle picker shoes, Italian styled mod suit and bright red narrow tie of course (and we thought we were the Bees Knees). "
"I left Brum in 1963 then returned in 1966 and the night clubs were happening. There was a club in Great Hampton Street, Hockley (I cant remember the name). It was owned by Eddie Fewtrell he and his brother. They were the gangsters of the time. Then there was the Rum Runner just off Broad Street; you went down an alley way, it had a gambling casino on the left hand side. The nightclub had a huge patronage it cost 10 bob to get in. Yes, those were the days; you could have a good night out for a fiver or less. "
"Further up Broad Street, down at the end of Gas Street, was a nightclub called the Opposite Lock. Even though it was opposite a lock on the canal the terminology was taken from the motor racing language. The club attracted the motor racing fraternity and it was an older clientele than were attracted to the Rum Runner. "
"Then in the late 60s the Fewtrell brothers opened a couple of really large night club venues one in Lower Severn Street, just up from the Hippodrome and the other just off Broad Street. I think it was somewhere near the old Bingley Hall Centre. Both clubs had girls names [Rebeccas in Lower Severn Street and Barbarellas up off Broad Street] they were fairly large and attracted a large following from older teenagers up to late 20s and early 30s. They would attract International stars mainly artists that were currently in the charts. Of course, suits and ties were the dress of the day. Although dress codes were getting more relaxed, although ties were mandatory you could get away with a leather jacket and trousers (No Jeans of course). "
"I spent many a late night in most of them, not only was the entertainment good, but the drinks were always reasonable and they attracted lots of single females. In those days very few had their own transport, so if you had a car you were pretty right."
"I did spend a helluver lot of nights clubbing around Brum late 60s and early 70s. There were a couple of great pubs, besides the Tavern in the Town, which was a regular watering hole for me. There was a pretty large pub on Hill Street Close to Navigation Street, where you would go around 9:30pm at night for a few bevies before venturing on to the clubs at around 10:30pm -11pm, then getting home at around 4 to 5 am. What a life! "
"In the early 70s the fashions were changing. Shirts had those large penny collars flared trousers were happening. Also there was period where the smart dressed man wore a double breasted blazer with a matching tie and shirt rather wide ties. If I remember, with the girls wearing platform sole shoes, they were taller than the men. So platform shoes became the style for men. Of course, by the mid 70s men wore skin tight see through shirts open to the waist."
Eddie Fewtrell was Birmingham's night club king in the 60s and 70s. There is a book about his life available on Amazon, right.
There is also an article on Wikipedia about the Rum Runner night club in Birmingham see Rum Runner - Wikipedia.
"I worked in the top room at Rebecca's in the 60's as a barmaid on both sides of the room...it was one of the most exciting times. Initially I started working weekends only since I had a full time office job but it soon developed into more and more evenings. loved the work and it was one of the best times of my life. Finally I sat at the door on reception along with the bouncers admitting guests. That was the most fun! We would just be so professional all dressed in our evening gear..and the guys were so handsome in their suits...that was how we dressed in those days..the ladies wore long to the floor dresses too! There were huge long lines at the weekends to get into the clubs..Rebecca's was no exception. I worked at Barbarellas for a stint but the "magic" wasn't like at Rebecca's. Rebecca's was also three floors with dedicated music on each floor..The Sin Bin at the bottom, the Blue Soul in the middle. There was never a dull moment on our club scene. On the weekend we always went on to another club after work or for a curry at the Eastern Moon or ended up at the Tow Rope on Broad Street for breakfast. I had a million friends and after I quit (exhausted)ha,. I had a standing invite to come whenever I could..Oh what I would give to relive those days!" Eileen
"As the 60's came to an end I DJ'd at Rebecca's between 1971 and 1974. I started in the Cabasa on the top floor then 'graduated' to the Blue Soul on the ground floor which was a fabulous club room. John Fewtrell was my boss and other jockeys at the club were Pat Martin, Pete King, Bob King, Pete Allen and Sam T. We were also occasionally seconded to Barbarellas or the Cedar Club. I remember Nick and Ken on the door. I have never stopped DJing since and am always respectful and grateful of being able to do my 'apprenticeship' working for the Fewtrells. The King Of Clubs book is good reading by the way."DJ Barry John
"Reading all about Rebbecas takes years off me. It’s four o clock in the morning as I took over running my favorite place after john got moved to run Barbs. All the names mentioned bring very happy times back to me. What a good night it would be if we could all meet somewhere. My last contact with Eillen was in Canada where Tony Leung and Jane is wife past members of the clan. It was a time and place like no other. It’s great to have been there at the time I hope somebody will contact me sometime."Tony Hallam
"Wow, u have ressurected a lot of memories for me! The Whiskey used to be just off the Ringway from what I can remember, with that dodgey staircase? Do u remember the West End at the old cinema just up from 5 ways island at the end of the Ringway? With the bouncy dancefloor? Every Monday nite down the Locarno....great! I used to go with my first love Pauline, what a berk I was to lose her!!!!!
Then it was the Top Rank club, Tuesdays! Do u remember the Midnite City, Digbeth, then on to the all nite cafe in the Midland Red bus station. Saw the Who at the City, that was an all weekender! I'm lucky I survived that one!!!! Then there was the Apollo in New st, West Bromwich, Walsall Town Hall, Spencer Davis band, thanks Pat! Riding around from one club to another on our scooters. But the best was the Surfside Stop at the bottom of Constitution Hill, Crazy Horse strip club above it.
Of course everyone will remember the Mulberry Bush and Tavern in the Town, in the late 60's they were the pubs! Who can remember the pub that used to be opposite Lewis's just on the circle, set back in the shopping centre?
Remember the Heartbeat at the ice rink off Husrt Str? As for suits there was only one tailor...Philip Collier, Smallbrook Ringway, Mohair and Wool, I had a chocolate brown one, that cost me 21 quid back in 66,and considering I only earned 5quid a week it was a hell of a sacrifice, but worth it. 12 in centre vent, just the business, then my mom stuck it in the washing machine about 6 months after I had it....buggered it completely! I was inconsolable for weeks!!!!!
Not forgetting the Metro down Livery str either. But the best of them all was the Locarno, fantastic Motown, walking round anti-clockwise, top button done up with a certain swagger. The tiniest knot u could get in ur tie. Sat mornings down the Diskery, with Erskine T, I'd spend all day in those telephone boxes listening to the imports from the States...Ursulena with ur washing machina by Bill Cosby, and all those...great!
I was born in Aston, B'ham then moved to Great Barr late 50''s (Up the Villa), then on to Four Oaks, Sutton Coldfield. I've lived in South Africa for the last 20 years.
Does anyone remember the Friday nite down at St Andrews, where we were supposed to shout and scaream as Paul Jones from Manfred Mann, came in on the back of a limo? He got pelted with whatever we could lay our hands on...Jesus Christ Superstar I believe....anyway after about 3-4 attempts they slung us all out and aborted the mission, we ended up down the Surfside.
Me & my mate Al, worked as glass collectors and barmen at the Opposite Lock club in '72 / '73 then at Barbarellas, Rebeccas and The Tower Ballroom, those r yet more memories!
What great memories. Lets have some more! "John Dangerfield
"Does anyone remember the Heaven Bridge Chinese restaurant in the walkover across Smallbrook Ringway? I use the word restaurant very loosely...!"John
"What about: Victor Sylvester's ballroom under the Odeon in the city centre The Cavern by small heath park The Ritz in Kings Heath"sue jagger
"Remember the Cedar club and was it le metro under the railway arch in snow hill. What about the rainbow suite over the co op? The dolce vita was pretty smart in small brook ring way and had great acts"Robert Cotterill
"In the late 1950s I was a student at the College of Arts & Crafts (as it then was) in Margaret Street. One regular haunt used to be the Second City Traditional jazz club that had several locations - perhaps the best being in Digbeth. I spent many a splendid night there, after being welcomed by Madge (by the way, for many years I have tried unsuccessfully to track down a recording that was made called tribute to Madge any info would be most welcome) I would head for the left hand side of the stage where most of the arty crowd hung out and search for Stevie with her bright and ever cheerful smile for a nights dancing. All the stars appeared here - George Melly, Humph, Ken Colyer and others, but still my favourite was the house band. I have lived in Canada since the late 60s but still miss Brum. Memories, memories, memories. " Maurice
"I was born at Bel barn rd in 1952 then in 1954 we moved to 4/74 Irving st and i went to Bristol st school i wish somebody had some photos of the school and put them on the website i loved that school it was demolished in the 60s i only have my memories Wat a brill time to grow up happy days. "Peter Marriott
"Hey, Lora Dixons, I learned ballroom at her Dance Studio above Chetwyns (I think that was before the Rock and Roll era) I was about 14/15 at the time (1950'ish) and one of the quickstep favourite tunes was 'Mountain Greenery'. I can remember the tram terminus from the Bristol Road was right opposite and by the tram stop was a wall, which I could just see over, which hid the New Street railway lines (pretty much the same now I think." Colline
"Can anyone recall the location, in the 50's, of the Masque Ballroom. I have a thought that it may have been in Erdington but could be wrong!" Ken
" I remember the Tower Ballroom in the 1950's especially the New Year's Eve Dance where we all queued outside for hours, rain, hail or snow to get a ticket to go in where a live band played. It was great fun with a wonderful party spirit and everyone was happy and we rock and rolled to our hearts content. Me with my very flared skirt and stockings and suspenders showing in front of the band where I thought I was the cats whiskers!
I also spent every night of the week ballroom dancing, rocking and rolling at the West End ballroom, Saturday included, which is where I met my husband. Mind you there seemed to be a shortage of young men until the last dance, when they rolled out of the pubs - (ladies did not frequent the pubs much in those days. The idea was for them to ask us for the last dance and then ask if they could walk us to our nearest bus stop! (Very crafty I used to think!) The only problem I had, although I was aged 20 years, I used to be warned by my mother that I had got to be back home by 11.0.pm, much to my disgust, so unfortunately I had to leave the dance before the dance had finished" Margaret Blake (nee) Sanders
"really glad I've found this page, I was begining to think that my mind was going. I've spoken to lots of people about the westend at the top of the queensway, and the sprung dance floor but know one remembered it. but now it's been mentioned in other letters. days of our lives, I also used lora dixons, the whiskey a go go. my era in town was around 1962 the music was the best there's ever been. on my side of town we also used the atlas ballroom (the telstar club ) the macadown in tile cross. and mothers in erdington. we were out dancing 5 nights a week, my girlfriend then was a girl called joan xx she was the best but I messed that up. the sixties were the best days of my life. Bob." Bob Gilchrist
Add your comments on 50s and 60s Birmingham
"O my God!! What memories.
I remember all of these places, I was miss West End about 1960 0r 61 Im not sure of the year. I was looking for the name of a ballroom dancing school in the 60s, the daughter was a british champion, she had red hair.
I need to end a bit of a disagreement.
If anyone can help please." Josephine Williams 08/11/2010
"The king kong gorilla is now and always was situated in almeria centre spain." rusty. 10/11/2010
"forgot to mention, what a great site. must try and do something to make bigger." rusty. 10/11/2010
"Many a great evening spent at The Tavern then on to Samanthas nightclub or The China Gardens coffee place under Lewis's. Happy days." NITA 11/11/2010
"Does anyone remember the Sonny Rose Orchestra, resident at the west End Ballroom in the 50s" Michael Rose 13/11/2010
"What a great site !!! It brings so many memories to life. I used to travel up from Cheltenham to visit the city three or four times a year to buy clothes and to sample the varied night life to be had at tha time. I remember most of the clubs etc mentioned above with great affection. Myself and a pal Terry Sherwood met a couple of girls one night in the Heartbeat and were asked back to their place. At GREAT EXPENSE we bought a bottle of brandy from the then club manager, even more money was spent on a taxi to somewhere miles away from the city. This was all acceptable-ish as we thought we were "onto a good thing " Imagine our surprise at being kicked out the father of one of the girls just minutes after arriving at the house, to make matters worse, we'd walked a couple of miles back towards the city when we realised we'd forgotten the bloody brandy !!!! "We'd been had" !!! OR MAYBE NOT !!!
Happy Days.. Hope more of you will post your memories here. It makes some really interesting reading
Best regards to you all
John Smith" John Smith 22/11/2010
"i clubbed in birmingham in the mid 70 for a number of years what a fantastic nightlife it was top rank locarno the cabin pub costamongers hole in the wall rebeccas barbarellas were still going all the clubs in broad street many memorable times best years of my life" jimmy griffin 28/11/2010
"i was a dj at the locarno between 1966-1969
along with stuart king & bobby gee,still good friends with the heartbeat dj frankie lee" dave keen 07/12/2010
"Wow. Someone said Heaven Bridge Chinese Restaurant. I haven't heard of that for years. That was the first place we ever went as kids in the late 60s. Anyone remember the Slow Boat restaurant, another Chinese place? Lived in Great Barr late 60s/early 70s. Great memories of the clubs in the city, night service home. Speedway at Perry Barr, chips at Marco's...Waaahhh.
Mike" Mike D 15/12/2010
"The large King Kong figure was in Camp Hill, just back from the flyover - I think it was in a car park or in a car dealer's forecourt - I remember travelling along the Stratford Road as a boy, into the city centre and looking into the right at King Kong before we headed into Digbeth - I remember the Birmingham Evening Mail made a big thing about King Kong being sold and I think there was a campaign to stop him from leaving Birmingham (though unsuccessful, obviously!)" Andrew Bonehill 30/12/2010
"I worked for J.A.Roberts Architects in the Rotunda in the mid 60's. Jim Roberts was the most ethical person I have known. His original design for the Bullring was misappropriated and the Bullring was not developed as designed by J.A.Roberts." Eileen Savedra 12/01/2011
"I worked at rum runner casino 1972/ 1975 any one know me and want 2 chat" Bridget 27/01/2011
"Do any friends who often attended the Masque Ballroom recall a lady by the name of Joan Hern in the early fifties? Ken" Ken 28/01/2011
"what a page - used to travel from coventry to brum on a friday night late sixties - three of four car loads to the club cedar as it was correctly called - brilliant nites and if it wasnt then around to the rum runner or elbow room - opposite lock on odd occasion. was a great time leaving our regular girlfriends in coventry and meeting our friday nite girl friends in brum - Linda Stockham where are you now?????" David I 08/02/2011
"There was only one club in town that really mattered, The Elbow Room in Aston. you had to knock on the door to be let in. Also, does anyone remember the Penthouse just down from the Cedar Club. You went up in a fur lined lift to the club.
The Heart Beat with Frankie Lee dj-ing was the fist club I visited where I met and got engaged to my first husband," Jacqueline L Miller 16/02/2011
"Michael Rose, did you used to work in Cecil Gee in New Street? I remember Sonny Rose orchestra, also dancing all night at the Heart Beat and coffee at the Surfside Cafe.
Great nights at the Elbow Room and Sunday nights at the Cedar for people working in the clubs." Jacqueline L Miller 16/02/2011
"The West End ballroom was the most exciting place I had ever been to when I was 15.Worked just up the road at the Britannic Assre, and we would rush down there on Wednesday lunchtime, and spend the time jiving. Loved the bouncy floor, the perfume machine in the ladies loo. The mirrors and stools where we would sit and make ourselves presentable.You could go upstairs to the dj Jeff, and request records. Sometimes the group was Jerry levene and the Avengers. Had a crush on him. On Saturday luchtimes there was a gay couple who used to jive together and everyone used to gather round to watch them. Also a brilliant dancer called Robo, who would jive with two girls at the same time,wonder if he can still do that now. Haha.Loved it there." lynnestanley 15/03/2011
"after watching duran duran tonight logged on to brum night clubs wow bought back memories. I worked at Rebecca,s.Eddie and john Frutrell were my bosses. most weekends all went on to the rum runner. and grabbed a coffee at the all night cafe opposite. Made a lot of friends with soul artists at barbarellas but sorry we lost Edwin Starr a really nice talented guy. Been in contact with Ben E King still doing fantastic live shows>> had chance of backing The Real Thing when they got on circuit but due to commitments had to drop out>> still have lots of memories. so all you folk out there involved with the old clubs>> hope life has been good and love to turn back time for a while>> but perhaps one day re live againxxx" linda colclough 20/03/2011
"Sloopy's - How can you miss sloopys? it was the most cool place in Town. We used to go to all of the other clubs mentioned but, always ended up in Sloopy's before we went home. Met my wife there had a lot of friends there - it was the'Cheers' of Birmingham night clubs.
One other place from the 60's not yet mentioned was the pie wagon outside snow Hill station. If ever you missed your mates or walked a girl to the last bus you would always regroup at the pie wagon, especially if you had no nightclub money left- 2 shillings would get you a steak and onion pie whilst you froze your duck off and waited for the night service bus's in St Philip's place - happy days!" Phil Surrey 23/03/2011
"During the day the coolest place to meet was the Kardomah Cafe in Canon Street where people used to meet after shopping for their Ben Sherman shirts and Coxmoore sweaters. The girls who worked in the fasion shops used to have their lunch in there so you would always bump into someone you knew from the clubs.
My mohair suit was from Burton's - 10 shillings a week with a 10 pound deposit for 20 weeks. It soon went by, especially if you asked for a fitting after 6 weeks and a second fitting. It would never stay on the hanger as the 16 ounce cloth wasn't heavy enough to hold the weight of the waist band.
Midnight blue, 14 inch vent, fish fin cuffs, quarter cross pockets with no pleats (for the French look) flat bone buttons with a four button front jacket. Inch and a quarter hand picked stitching on the lapels with no lapel button hole; slanting pockets with a ticket pocket.
When you picked up the suit you got measured for the next one.
We used to wear the jacket with jeans when the trousers wore out - my mate ordered two pair of trousers with his to make it last, but burnt a hole in the jacket.
Mohair was great for night clubs - lightweight and cool but freezing on the scooter or at the bus stop. American parkas and long leather coats helped - happy days" Phil Surrey 24/03/2011
"Does anyone remember a coffee bar in the centre of Birminghan in the 60's that had a large 7ft x 3.5Ft ceramic mural on its wall, the mural was made up of 50 or so heavy glazed irregular shaped pieces and showed a group of Aztecs or Incas with big bowls of coffee beans with a red & yellow sunset behind them." Paul Wilson 27/05/2011
"Re Coffee Shop
"Carwardines" spring to mind" John Smith 30/05/2011
"I went to the opening night of the Surfside Stop at the bottom of Consitution HillThey servrd coffee with cream in little silver pots, We liatened to I left my Heart in San Fransisco for hours. We used to go to the Metro all yje time, Folk on Tuesday, Jazz on Friday, pop on Saturday and r&b on Sunday. Weshared Barley wine and queued up to get in. Jazz at the Salutation Inn .I remember when a piano got stuck on the stairs so they played it there all night. The elbow Room in Aston was pink and white inside and tiny! We used to go to the Cedar Club and the Rum Runner, There was a pub called tge Greyhound near the Accident Hospital the served cider mixed with blackcurrant juice and who remembers thr Kardomah 1st floor in New Street. All the girls used to go there to get changed to go out and we used to get loads of invites to parties. There was the Woodman pud by the West End cinema, what a shame when hatwas demolished, and all those little alleys with shops and pubs opposite Lewisse. We once climbed up to the top of Rackams for a dare before it was opened, Itused to close on a Saturday afternoon when it firdt opened.It was one class down from Marshall and Snellgrove.Ha dto go and give vlood during the bombings at the Axxident but by that time I had gone to Newcastle Uni and was married by then. Nothing ib this worls compared to the time we had in Brum in the middle 60s I even went out with one of the Argentinian footballers when they playe din Brum for the world cupin 1966 and stayed at Albany I could go on and on Birmingham Jazz Festival in Cannon Hill, Helping the international students who came to Build Cannon Hill rts Centre. Chamberlains Fountain on a sunny Saturday Morning Great Days" lauren 12/06/2011
"Extra, I used to go to Uni with a girl we called Sue whos dad owned the Heavens Bridge. Great Chinese. We also use to go go to the Bengal near the Scala Cinema,There ysed to be an Ats Cinema nearby. Saw the Beatles in Town Hall in 1963 they were playing with Roy Orbison. Saw the Rolling Stones at the Odean New Street. We used to go to A coffee bar in Harborne under a circle by the Fire Station. My dad strted Birminghan Jazz club with 4 others in a pub in Birmingham and helped to organise Louis Armstroanf playing There I still have magazines and info about it. We used to go to the Rendevous by the Register Offices in Broad street and have cooffee from square glass cups.Sometimes we would go for a drink, go to the Bengal for a meal, a midnight film show at the Scala or the cinema in New Street watching a couple of Hamer Horrors nad then at about 5am wander down to the bikers Cooffe and burger van near the old rep for an early morning coffee and bacon sandwich. That was Living. We used to go to the White Swan in Harborne (the Dirty Duck) and there I met my future husband!! There was also the Locarno by the Hip. and the dancehall in Handsworth, There Barberellas,which had a few change of name. What a great place to live." lauren 13/06/2011
"I was DJ on the third floor of The Whisky in 1965. How we got the Hammond organs of Georgie Fame and Graham Bond up the stairs I'll never know. Glad we were on amphetamins
I've seen the place absolutely packed for Georgie Fame, we'd have been dead if there had been a fire
The girls were beautiful, the guys dangerous, the music [The Sue Story Vol.1 the standard] fantastic - a great start to a new era" Spike Davis 18/06/2011
"is there any one out there that was around the midnight city club in the late 60s i used to go with my husband Jim Barrett Paddy Duffy was one of our best friends and if anyone was a mod he was we now live in vancouver canada , we also used to go to the whiskey we all came from balsall heath and i am so happy i grew up there so many great people!" carol barrett bergonzi 20/06/2011
"To Michael Rose.
Michael my mother, Barbara Seaman, occasionally sang with the Sony Rose Orchestra. She took part in a competition called 'Stairway to The Stars' in April 1950 at the West End Ballroom and sang Blue Moon. Mum came a very close second to Johnnie Romero who sang 'My Dream is yours'. Both songs were recorded live with the Sony Rose Orchestra and made into a record by Hollick and Taylor of Grosvenor Studios in Handsworth. I remember hearing it a few times when we were very young.
A couple of years ago my brother managed to get the last acetate copy of the record from the studio, miraculously just before it closed for good. We had it made into a CD for mum who hadn't heard the songs since the 1960's when she gave her last copy of the record away. It sounds pretty good and she was delighted to hear it again after all these years. Please let me know if you would like a copy of the CD.
Phil Brolan" Phil Brolan 10/07/2011
"Stumbled on this website and memories flooding back. Cockney boy came to see Arsenal play Villa, but game abandoned due to snow. Downed a yard in the tavern then met a fab girl Liz Green in Opposite Lock club. That started a weekly trek from Euston to New Street. She had a little boy called Martin and lived in Golden Hillock Road. Would love to hear from you Liz. Vic" Vic 15/07/2011
"please can you remember a fire at a tyre place close to the bottom of Alma street between 1959 - 1962 i need to know the date or the place or anything - it was front page news but i need to know how to get hold of this - thanks so much if you can help me been looking for 10 years now" Ellen 17/07/2011
"What a great site, found by accident, boy what memories.
I used to work weekends in the 60,s to supplement my art school grant at the Elbow Room,and I remember all the other clubs.
Does anyone out there remember the DJ Andy Ferris whose signature tune was"Green Onions"" judith wainwright 19/07/2011
Try the Birmingham Reference Library failing that The Birmingham Post and Mail does have an archives section on line
Good Luck" judith wainwright 26/07/2011
"Someone mentioned the pie wagon at Snowhill...Double waaahhh! Can't believe Tomorrow's World was wrong and they haven't invented a time machine yet..." Mike D. 13/08/2011
"I was looking for 60s music at top rank ballroom Cardiff when i came across this site once i started reading it brought back a lot of memories for me especially the comments about the surf side stop and the crazy horse strip club i was actually a drummer in the band who played there backing the strippers that was before they brought in backing tapes it was a hell of a job getting our equipment up to the club in that little lift oh happy days when you used to cue up to see bands in pubs and it did'nt cost you the earth" GEORGE O' BOYLE 22/08/2011
"found this site by accident.i was the catering manager at the silver blades ice rink from 1966 to 1969.was very much into the club scene and had some great times at the cedar club la dolce vita barbarellas opposite lock etc.i rembember dj frankie lee.have lived in manchester for the last 27 years and would love to hear from anybody who remembers me" nic wood 24/08/2011
"The best place in Brum in the mid 60's was the Midnight City. I saw the 'Spencer Davis' group there and the unforgettable 'Cream'! You couldn't buy any alcohol but you could get a 'slush puppy'.We used to stay there all night and get kicked out about 6am on the Sunday morning. It was difficult to stay awake on the Sunday as my parents didn't know we had been to an 'all nighter'.I used to say I was staying at my mates and she used to say the same. Of course we got found out eventually and that was the end of that! Nevertheless we had some great times there. I even still have my membership card!
The Locarno was a must on Monday nights and I have a photo of me and my partner when we came second there in a Twist competition sponsored by Brooke Bond Tea. The winners had to go to London for the final, so I'm glad I only came second. I didn't even know the chap who I danced with as he just grabbed me on the dance floor and we started dancing the Twist!
Saturday (afternoon) was the day to go to the West End. There were all these big sofa's around the dance floor and the music was fabulous.I used to hang about with Spider and Alan Tisdale but just can't remember any one else's name.
I lived in Highgate and could walk to town so was always going dancing with my mate Brenda, who lived near to me. Saw many famous singers and groups at the Rainbow Suite which was above the Co-op in High Street, where I worked.
I live in the Cotswolds now but those days in Brum will always be special to me. Fran 27/8/2011" Fran Lewis 27/08/2011
"Silver Blades Hmmm I hope you didn't drive the Zamboni. The hump in the middle cost me 2 front teeth in the early 70's" Steve Carter 30/08/2011
"Andrew Bonehill (earlier comment) is right about King Kong being in Camp Hill. I think it was originally erected by the council in (I think) the Bull Ring but it came in for a lot of critical flak so it was removed and for a while stood on the forecourt of a used-car dealer in Camp Hill which, I'm fairly certain, was called "The King Kong Kar Kompany". Nice memories about the night life." Alan Ward 03/09/2011 03/09/2011
"Saturday,if you were not working,clothes shoppingin the morning,coffee at the Kardoma,followed by dancing at the West End in the afternoon,home to change and thenback for clubbing. wonderful times, wonderful city.
Now living in Ireland and not getting over too often but oh! the changes now,Buildings forgotten or gone even if they were listed My old school[Moseley school of Art] falling down. Such wonderful architecture once it is gone it is gone forever" judith wainwright 04/09/2011
"did not drive the zamboni i was to busy serving food and drink to the gang and after going to which ever club took our fancy.the gang on any one night might have consisted of pete witton,john hope manager of the greyhound cider house,linda sherman-european skating champion,alan marshall organist at the ice rink to name but a few.happy days." nic wood 06/09/2011
"Does anyone remember the dj frankie lee he used to dj at laura dicksons 62/63 then moved to heart beat then on to the roller rink spring hill then on to freelance around birmingham pubs then the opposite lock for about five years then went on to management, It would be good to hear from anyone to share these wonderfull memory's" Mary McLiddy 13/09/2011
"i remember the daddy longlegs strip club on the corner of stratford road and coventry road" james 16/09/2011
"The CASTAWAYS where the big stars appearedclea" frank 17/09/2011
"does anybody remember the club in handsworth caproblemlled TITOS was in rose hill rd and the one between handworth and west brom saw the beatles and the kinks there but cant remember the name'memorys going i think' happy days when it was ok to walk home at 3am no" catherine 18/09/2011
"DO ANY OF YOU DJS OUT THERE REMEMBER THE MEETING WE HAD AT THE CURRY HOUSE ON SMALLBROOK RINGWAY WITH PAT MARTIN,PETE,ANDY,BARRIE,ETC" linda 19/09/2011
"just remembered that we used to go to the BRUMBEAT it was a cellar on summer row the ground floor was a coffee bar full of 'beatnicks' playing harmonicas a la brian jones great then the next floor was a bordello but the cellar was the greatest place right next to the canal!it must have been overrun with rats but it was so dark you would never know!! some of the acts i saw there were great including lee dorsey and my boy lollipop milllie we really thought it was better than the cavern. great times" catherine 23/09/2011
"catherine, cant remember brumbeat but sounds a great place,it might be the same place as the factory at the lock ? by the way can anybody remember the djs name at the lock who used to wear a scottish kilt? he was totally bonkers" linda 23/09/2011
"is there a john walsh out there! remember me john ! been looking for you for years remember the stage door cafe brum carol bergonzi." carol barrett bergonzi 25/09/2011
"i remember the romulus club on the hadgley road with dj sammy tee i think he went to live in australia but remember having a great time ,it was the place to be, i think its a resturant now,anyone out there remember the nights dancing and drinking in the romulus? would love to share your memories as mine are fading it was around 1973-74" linda 05/10/2011
"I have had the best time ever reading all the stuff on this page. The Locarno was my favourite place I came 2nd in a competition there, my then boyfriend was Jimmy McDonagh, I thought I was the bees knees in my polka dot skirt, white blouse with matching neckerchief round my neck, black flatties,one sock green and one sock pink, and of course my gorgeous beehive, I new all the places mentioned above and the memories came flooding back. Wouldn,t it be lovely to have a 50s 60s revival night and all dress up again before its to late. I,m up for it, any one else??" Patricia Rose 16/10/2011
"What great memories. In the mid seventies me and my friends Anne and Jackie virtually lived at Rebeccas. We used to go Fridays and Saturdays (sometimes Thursdays). It was the best club ever - top room with all the best music. Tony was the manager, Tex and Joe were on the door. Afterwards, we sometimes used to go to the Koh i Nor Indian restaurant with a big tree in the middle (in Bristol Street) - does anyone remember it?" Gill 18/10/2011
"yes gill i remember the khoinoor curry house best curry ever ,also the cedar club after hours good place to meet frienda and chill out into the early morning hours" linda 25/10/2011
"Oh the memories of being a mod with my lambretta and parker in the sixties and then a townie with my 3 piece suit and brogues. The cool scene for us was The Midnight City in Digbeth; they always played Wilson Pickets In The Midnight Hour at would you believe Midnight. The Whisky over 3 Floors at the back of New Street on the corner opposite the signal box. The Penthouse in Summer Hill which was on the first floor which you had to get a lift to. Memories of all nighters and ending up at the Tow Rope (Toe Rag) cafÃ© in Broad Street. Nothing but Tamala, Soul, happy nights and sleeping all day to get refreshed for the next session." Paul 30/10/2011
"Come on you guys! There must be a few oldies left alive who remember the fabulous Shoop-shoop Art College Discotheque on thursday nights at the Golden Eagle, Hill Street! Ahead of the curve in music, fashion and atmosphere. No suits - just solid sweaty dancing from 1965 till into the 70's. Full to overflowing every time with no publicity needed and not a gangster in sight!" Aj 02/11/2011
"I remember the locarno upstairs in the coffee bar looking down on the dance floor to see who you fancied and also the bouncy floor at the west end but does no-one remember the plaza dance hall in handsworth there were all the top groups on every week and I saw all of them including the beatles twice what great times they were" marg carter 06/11/2011
"Jaqueline L. Miller asks if anyone remember's the Penthouse Club just a short walk from the Cedar? It was in the bulding at the corner of Summer Lane. Yeah! That lift was something else. As you got out of it, bar to the right on the outside wall of the building and a smallish stage in the opposite corner if I've got it right. Many a stagger home to Handsworth, only to find I'm locked out..... Happy days. Alan, 11/11/2011" Alan Kenney 11/11/2011
"No sign of drink/drive rules in the 60's, frightening state we were in as we rolled out into Broad St from the Rum Runner in the early hours and jumped into the mini to drive home or wherever! Must be loads of you out there who remember the Carlton Club in Erdington above the furniture store, and what was the name of the club in Livery St?? Took our french exchange student there and had to endure him having the brummie birds eating out of his hand! Great memories." Rick Jones 13/11/2011
"Does anyone remember The Old House At Home pub in Lordswood Road Harborne,in the late 1960's ? The dining room at the back was decorated in a cowboy and indian theme with arrows in the walls and ceiling,a cowboy dummy shooting a gun etc.Me and my mate have been trying to recall the name of the resaurant-can ANYONE help ? Please !!" Paul Harris 14/11/2011
"I remember the Shoop at the Golden Eagle in the mid to late 70s. It was a punk place but played a bit of reggae. I can picture it now - dark and a bit mucky. I thought it was really cool. I remember hearing Cocaine in my Brain for the first time there - think it's by Dillinger.
Rebecca's was my favourite club then - loads of reggae. Tex was on the door and one of the DJs was Lionel. Downstairs in the Sin Bin they played some pretty heavy dub. Wonderful time for me.
Really enjoyed reading this it's brought back loads of memories." Sam 16/11/2011
"anyone remember mad tommy come nutter" tom 20/12/2011
"@Rick Jones, the club in Livery Street was the Metro
@Paul, the old Tow Rope didn't open til about 11 oclock at night and the battered fish was so fresh ... or was it me that was so drunk" Phil Rogers 21/12/2011
"does anyone have a photo of C Sanders jewellers abt no. 43 Hockley Hill,(my parent) right hand side looking towards town. knocked down to make the flyover.
hope you can help
vjm" valerie mucklow 23/12/2011
"I was a glass collector at the Opposite Lock from 1966 until about 1972. The dj that used to wear a kilt from time to time, was, I am pretty certain Roger Harris.
It was a great club with its motor racing theme and all the bent steering wheels behind the donwstairs bar. It also put on some good jazz music, but everything really got going when the dj came on at midnight.
When I started glass collectors had to wear pale blue 'Dunlop' racing overalls. Felt like an idiot, but the girls seemed to like the outfit!
I remember a bouncer from another club came in one night and caused a bit of trouble, so we threw him in the canal. I can still remember him shouting about his Â£100 suit. We got him out, the police arrived and when he knocked one of their helmets off he got arrested. He came back the next night and there were no hard feelings. We always called him 'flipper' after that. I also worked in the Factory next door. Once we had set all the bars up before the club opened we used to play footie on the roof ( we climbed up via the old lift shaft). The factory used to produce toys that went into christmas crackers.
After clearing up and leaving the club about 4am we would sometimes head for the Tow Rope, an interesting experience in itself with a motley mix of prostitutes, late nighter like us and assorted villains.
Sometimes we would go to the Flowerpot in Digbeth, a reggae club and play the pinball machines. What we never did was go home, except to sleep until the next night's exertions. It was truly great to be young and footloose in the sixties.
N. Cav" Nick Cavalier 17/01/2012
"just found this sight by accident and couldnt put it down. My band Daves Crowd played most birmingham venues in the 60,s. notedone comment about rainbow suite above the co-op. also comments about plaza handsworth. dont forget plaza old hill, both run by the regans i think. what about the forerunners to parties inthe park, we played many a tulip festival in cannon hill park and bonfire carnivals at small heath and pype hayes parks playing out of shard end community centre along side idle race etc hope someone remembers us
Dave Barber" dnbarber 20/01/2012
"Jacqueline Milner. Yes I did work at Cecil Gee all those years ago. I also have fond memories of the clubs in Birmingham, especially the Heart Beat with Frankie Lee." Michael Rose 29/01/2012
Hi Phil. I have only just seen your reply to my request about my father Sonny Rose, and the amazing news that you have a recording of his orchestra with your mother on vocal. I would really appreciate the opportunity to hear this. I hope that you are still visiting this great site." Michael Rose 29/01/2012
"king kong used to be on a car sales place camp hill. last i heard of him he's somewhere in scotland.somebody trying to get him back to brum. i'm surprised only two people mentioned the carlton at erdington.saw the move there when they had just got together.were they good or wot. trevor burton,bev bevan still playing. anybody remember strip club the dolls club on the left when you turned down coventry rd off stratford rd. anybody remember the disc brake cafe beggars bush sutton where all the rockers used to go. ray whitehouse." r whitehouse 29/01/2012
"Reading all your comments makes me wish that I'd've been born earlier. I was a toddler in the early sixties. I would love to re-create a 60s club for those of us who wanted to turn back time, with original dress code too.
Clubbing in Brum now is manic!" Dina Kindle 13/02/2012
"To Michael Rose Re: Sonny Rose.
Hi Michael, I'm pleased you have seen my reply to your request. You can hear the song on YouTube. Search for Barbara Seaman and The Sonny Rose Orchestra. It would be brilliant if you could leave a comment.
We have some cds if you would like a copy. Please Friend request me on Facebook." Phil Brolan 14/02/2012
Thank you so much for the information. Heard the recording on You Tube, excellent, I would love to get hold of a copy of the CD. I will make contact via Facebook. Do you know if the recording of Johnnie Ramero also available?
Michael Rose" Michael Rose 20/02/2012
Hi Michael, Yes we also have the recording of Johnny Romero on cd too.
Looking forward hearing from you.
Phil Brolan" Phil Brolan 21/02/2012
"I remember the Opposite Lock in the 70's - & the motor racing theme-there was also Martin's room,furnished with Chesterfield settee's and if I remember correctly girls could not go in without a man 'signing her in'-also Faces nightclub on Five Ways-loved it there-remember opening night and a guy was dressed like John Travolta from Sat Night Fever- making a bit of an idiot of himself- girls could dress in little strapy dresses but the guys had to keep their jackets on (all night)- my then boyfriend now husband used to complain how unjust it was!! ha ha. great memories..happy days!" DENISE LEE 01/03/2012
"Thanks for triggering the memories. Le metro was the place for me. Beer in the Hen and Chickens ,Constitution Hill first then under the arches to Le metro. Loads of Motown and Northern Soul. After Rory ,my mate, an electrician at Dunlops, fixed their lights ,we got in for free. Fond memories of the walk up to the tea wagon for a pie and a Bovril to round the night off before the long walk home.Also remember the Bali Hai in the Locarno. The Locarno had a dress code, you needed a tie, the chippie next door used to sell them!Rum Rumnner, Samanthas ,Rebeccas,Opposite Lock, Elbow,Sloopys ,Tow Rope,the Shoop,The Tavern, Top Rank ,...I was probably in there with you! Keep on, keeping on!" Jim Cronin 02/03/2012
"is john walsh out there or wendy walsh remember midnight city ! stage door cafe bulls head! mosley carol barrett bergonzi living in vancouver canada love to hear from you !" carol barrett bergonzi 10/03/2012
"Great reading all these comments,only just found this site, I worked at the Duck Inn Hagley Road in the 1970's, my favourite club was the Romulus. best steak in town the Garryowen...in the 60's used to frequent the Station pub Hill St, great live music there, also the Plaza Handsworth..." Janet Barron 13/03/2012
I'm really interested in Elbow Room, Carlton, Mothers, West End in 1960's and Opposite Lock, A little later, the Whisky A' Go'Go. Do you remember the Aero Club at, what what was then Elmdon Airport?
Does anyone remember a local DJ named Micky Twitch? He worked at the Elbow Roon, Carlton & Mothers in Erdington. Would love any repsonse" Liz Pyke 24/03/2012
"I worked in the coatroom at the Carlton Club in Erdington, fabulous, went in early and met the groups, Rocking Berries, etc. Great evenings out and not even a sniff of alcohol, couldn't afford it. locarno was great, brilliant resident band with about 50 members could play anything, at that time the DJ was the In filler while the band had a rest. Saturdays in the bull ring outside the record shop, then to the Chinese under Lewis,s rice egg and curry sauce for about 2shillings, then to the West End dances and slushies, sort out which gay (meant a party) we were going to that night, or to the Locarno then to the pie wagon opposite Snow Hill station. Other places Digbeth Civic Hall, Whisky s go go, stamp on back of hand, crowding into telephone box waiting to go in, then up to the fountain by the library to cool tired feet waiting for Lyons Corner house to open at 6am for coffee. YMCA Reseevoir Rrd Erdington, Rainbow room over the Co-op, and the Roxy in Hands worth, saw the Kinks there. It was a wonderful time to be young" Pam 24/03/2012
"Do any of you people remember the Morgue at the Kings Head pub,Hagley Road Bearwood? I still pop in there for a drink now and then and notice that the club is still there but long since shut obviously !Its all still as I remember it off the car park. Great times we had, with the likes of the Spencer Davis group,Uglies etc.I also recall John Singer who ran the Morgue and Thimblemill Baths in the winter with big name groups such as the Who, Kinks.Before the Morgue opened the dance nights were held upstairs and i recall Denny Laine and the Diplomats were on every week.(wonder where he ended up !!!) Great times !!" Paul Harris 05/04/2012
"The good old days dancing away the night at the Elbow Room in Aston Nicky Steel belting out the sounds until the floor bounced full of the Sutton Coldfield bunch in their posh sports cars...BEFORE ALL THIS even the Green Room youth club in Mere Green was place to be on a Friday night Soul sounds and orange juice with the mods Clive Wendy Swift/ Greenhalgh/ Pete Marriott/Jez stevens/ John Reynolds/Heather/Rose/Pam/Helen/Mary and many more. Wendy from Sutton" wendy Parfitt 10/04/2012
memories of 60's: Stage Door cafe in New meeting Street: Elbow Room Aston - seemed as though everyone who visited Birmingham at that time went there after their performances!!
Carlton - later known as Mothers above a shop on Erdington High Street. Whiskey, all nighter, just behind New St Station
Later I frequented Aero Club: Opposite Lock. Cedar. I also remember some one getting shot at the club by Hockley Flyover - think it was Dolls Club (what was I doing there??) & loads of other places: Went out evry night. Have recognised every club/cafe mentioned.
Does anyone remember Micky Twitch who was DJ at Elbow Room, then at Carltons/Mothers?
He was good friend with Steve Winwood and often brought people back to our parents home - I once cooked bacon & egg sandwiches for the Walker Brothers at about 3.30am!!
Jim Capaldi wrote a song about him
Really love to hear anything. He was my brother (Good or bad just anything would do) Not looking to write a book, just trying to give some information (again good or bad) to my children and now, grandchildren. My nephews are Gaz & Robbie Coombes, of (ex) Supergrass and I often see Michael in Gaz. I was very close to my brother and know what happened to him in Nepal and know his ex wife has died. Would just love to hear from anyone who knew him.," Liz pyke 12/04/2012
"Lovely site some fantastic comments - does anyone remember going to a club I think probably a jazz club and there being a blind pianist - his name was Frank Brampton - desperately trying to get a bit of info - he passed away I think in 1985." Lynn D 21/04/2012
"So pleased i found this site. Brings back great memories . . . Rum Runner, Opposite Lock, Elbow Room. Happy days (sigh)" Andrea McCallum 05/05/2012
"Andy Ferris DJ , he was well known around Brum '64-'69. He played all the clubs, and at one time carried all his decks and PA gear in the back of a Dailmer Hearse!He moved to Seden in '69, then back to London where he worked on radio One for a while in '71-'72, then went to Radio Victory in Portsmouth." Tony A 10/05/2012
"I am desperately searching for a Mary (Tess) Johnson who was born in 1945 and was in Shenley Fields Childrens Home . Does anyone remember her and know where she might be now, her family havnt seen her since 1963. Regards Christine" christine 27/05/2012
"Lynne Stanley-if you went to erdington grammar-remember your fab trevira suits-how brill! what a great string of memories! Missed the oil projectors when Le Metro changed to Holy City Zoo! Rum Runner was the favourite haunt and diversely Late Night Folk at the Rep. Everything was always followed by the Tow Rope or a quick blast to the motorway services at wolverhampton. Fun times. Thankyou for stirring so many memories." jood evans 29/05/2012
"This site got me all maudlin'!Brings it all back.Left Brum in 1978 for Australia and wound up in Indonesia but will never forget the good times in the 70's. The "Top Rank" was where I met my Mrs, New Year 1970. 'Becs and Barbs were great places too. Anyone remember Pete York, DJ at the "Rank"? Surprised no one has mentined Yates's Wine Bar . You get properly smashed in there for a pound or so. I was in a car about 50 meters away from the Mulberry Bush when the bomb went off. Terrible night. Might come back for a visit soon." Keith Kimmons 01/06/2012
"To Michael Rose.
Nothing to do with Birmingham, but am just going through some paper work of my late dads, before shredding, and found a letter from your dad, to my mum, she used to sing with him sometime during the war, she heard a radio programme of him in August 1973', and wrote to him, he did remember her and was telling her about his life since they had last met, how he and Pearl had a son Tony who was 29 in 1973 and 2 other sons aged 25 & 22 and a 12 year old daughter. My mum was Delene Webb. Sorry no recordings just some memories" Christine Twemlow 08/06/2012
"what a brilliant site. i was lucky enough to have lived in birmingham in the 60's.
i attended the college jewelery and silversmithing in vittoria street.to get extra money as a student i worked at night.the wandering minstrel in the bull ring center.what abusy pub that was with all the staff from the shops. i then went to long johns in new street opposite the abc cinema.then finally the old crown and cushion in perry barr. at the time i was going out with a girl called maureen who worked at the heartbeat club above the silver blades ice rink.what a great club that was.lots of the places mentioned on the site i went to the west end yates the greyhound the locarno ballroom and the surfside stop.does any one remember a club out at brownhills they used to have aband playing all buddy holly tracks. i remember as astudent you could drink 24 hours a day if you had the money.in between the pub opening hours you could get a drink in the snooker club on new street down the arcade.then night clubs the casino and so on. i recentley visited birmingham after many years what a change. i lived in alum rock for a while what a shock.but apart from that i had a brilliant time. if anyone remembers me get in touch. one more thing gillian thorogood the one that got away." george loggie 10/06/2012
"We have just had the 2nd reunion bash after 45 years since the Whiskey a go go closed,Please enjoy my recollections of what was probably the 1st great "All night blues club in the UK"
The 60's in Brum were the best for live Mod bands, specially at The Whiskey a Go Go above Chetwyns on the corner of John Bright Street and Hill Street. The whiskey was unique in the fact that not only did the local bands King Bee's, Modonaires, Jugs O'Henry,Graham Bond, Moody Blues, Denny Lane, Spencer Davis play there, but also people from the states. "Motown" & "R&B" greats like Sonny Boy Williamson & Ike and Tina Turner sang there. All nighters on Fridays till 8am Saturday mornings and again on Saturday nights till Sunday morning. The owners Chris & Steve Healey were two great guys who were there to welcome us all every night the Whiskey was open. They both wore natty striped jackets as I recall. A great guy named Ronnie Whichello ran the club as the manager, DJ, sweeper uper, toilet cleaner and booked all the blues and stax bands from the UK and USA and gave The Spencer Davis band their first gig.
remember Georgie Fame playing virtually all night. They couldn't get him off the small stage until he collapsed with exhaustion, or lack of stimulation's.
Great Brummie characters of the time also frequented The Whiskey; Sean Mahoney, Billy Sutton, Billy & Dodger Thompson (rip), Colin Mythan (rip), Noel Barnes, Chris and Gary Burgess, Jock Ellis, Duffy, Bugsy, Chris Wolsey, Mushy Moriearty, Kenny Frazer, Rob Marsh, Popeye, Dicky Martin, Bobby Summers, Henry O'Neil, Eddy The Jew, Jonnie Hutton, Percy McIver, Tony Parker, Tony Baker, Jim Cheesby, Kenny Bull, Dorian Walford. Black H (rip) and Spencer, who were both 60's & 70's local Brummie DJ's with Caribbean and soul backgrounds learnt their trade at the Whisky.
The place buzzed for three years until it changed hands and became the Marquee in 1968. And the chicks that went there were out of this world. One group were called "The Magnificent Ten" which included Esther, Cherrie, Lela, Betty & Jean Smart, Pat Smith, The O'Brian Sisters, Linda Walton, Oriel Teeger & Heather. Other male groups of people were nick named "The Martini Set", "The T-set" and the "Coca Cola Boy's". It was cult and leading edge for urban 60's live Motown & blues band music, dance styles and fashions emanated from the "Whisky".
They used to pack in nearly 250 townies and mods onto both floors in those days with no fire escapes only a small front door with narrow wooden steps up to the 1st and 2nd floor's. Live bands on the 1st floor and DJ's on the top floor. Many dudes where "knocked back" at the door if you weren't part of the crowd, as they could not get everybody in the gaff.
People would fall asleep on the wooden floor after they tired from dancing at about 5pm, but the bands and DJ's played on till about 8am. the following morning. Money and stuff all over the floor, came out of peoples pockets, it was like an "Aladdin's Den"
Do you remember that the phrase 'Nice One' which spread all over the country came from the Whiskey? There was a west Indian guy of about 40 (seemed really old then) who used to come up and dance on his own. After each record he would shout 'Nice One' which was soon picked up and used by all. Can't remember his name.
After we crashed out again in the mornings at the KD (Kardoma) coffee bar in New Street, we went on to the West End Dance Hall Saturday afternoon dance. We then had the energy to go to the "All Nighters" at the Town Hall. Spencer Davis with Steve Winwood were classic, along with the other Blues bands of the time. The Whiskey attracted people from all over the midlands, including Coventry and London scene, to dance and hear live music of the era, that was very ahead of pop culture in England at that time! If the Town Hall gigs weren't on, we used to go to "The Twisted Wheel" in Manchester that also played Motown & Blues".
In the summer of 1966 & 1967 you would find most of the guy's and girls of the Brum scene in Margate our favorite haunt on Bank Holidays, the centre of Birmingham used to be empty. it was a mad exodus by scooters, cars, thrumming and by train, jumped of coarse! We used to get of the train too Watford, where the local geezer Phil Manall used to offer us shelter and food after he took us to the local clubs and the "Milk Bar" in Watford High St. Sometimes we would go to the "East End" where another cockney dude Barry Lane looked after us in transit to Margate. Barry Lane also came up to Birmingham and came with us to Jersey in 1968, we made him an honoree Brummie.
In 1968 after the Whisky days ended we mostly took of and all worked the season in Jersey, well that's another story for another day.
Other live Mod band venues we frequented where the "Lafayette" and "The Connaught Suite" in Wolverhampton with Brian & Judy Franklin, the local leader Aggie and his mates.
The Matrix Club, Fortythievs & The Leofric hotel, in Coventry were other great venues where we mixed with the Cov crowd of Terry Green, Terry Shone, Tony Rieley, Paul Gardiner, Paddy McGurk, Guy Marshall ,Freddy McFarland, Rodney Joyce, Jim Snow, Ernie Clark, Wally Parker (rip), Frank Guin, Owen Ferry, Ernie Sower, Tilley /graham Rutherford, Con McGrogan, Dave & Mickey Snape, Brian Fanning (rip) and many more that also joined us at the Whisky agogo and in 1968 in Jersey.
We had our 1st Whiskey reunion in 2007 at Solihull Arden Tennis Club. Organized by Chris & Viv Wolsey and Bobby Summers, 150 original people including the Whiskey owner Steve Healey attended.
The reunion was DJ'ed by the refreshingly knowledgeable Mike Hollis of "Smooth Radio", 40 years after the Whiskey a Go Go closed in 1967. Nobody was knocked back at this gig though!! People came from as far away as Norway, France and all over the U.K. to meet each other again for the first time in all those years. It was a great nostalgic and emotional night . We intend to do it again in 10 years, God willing!!" BobbyS 10/06/2012
"Lynn D 21/4/2012 asked about blind pianist Frank Brampton.
He was a great friend of mine,played with him occassionally in The Mike Collins Combo.Took him to see and meet Steffane Grapelli at the Town Hall,Steffane remembered him from playing in the past,Frank also played at the Town Hall in the 50's keeping the audience entertained with Fats Waller songs.He was a mate of George Shearing, also blind,George went to his house in Sparkhill after the war before going to the States,asked Frank to go with him but he thought it too risky.Hope this helps Lynn. Cheers! David" Dave Banks 11/06/2012
"I remember my time as a mod in Brum during the sixties and many of the characters and places mentioned in this wonderful site! My mohair was also from Burtons and bought in installments. I used to go to the Westend in paradise street on Saturday lunchtimes and Wednesday evenings. A fantastically comfortable place with plush seating and lots of dark corners where all sorts of mischief could take place. I also frequented the Whiskey (Laura Dixons) all nighters on Saturday. I still have my membership cards.
I am sad to hear that Black H has passed away, he was a hero of mine. we were both lucky to survive after winding up the bouncers about the first 'Punk' fans at the Rum Runner one night and only avoided a severe kicking when Eddie Fewtrel, who H knew well, appeared and H scrounged a cigarette from him in front of his gorillas who were just about to see to us.
I remember all of the crew mentioned by Bobby S (above) at the Whiskey. There were also a couple of girls who wore full length leathers, thick layers of Panstick and huge false eyelashes who we called the 'Margate' dollies. Other 'faces' were Bobby Fields, Leo Ryan, Brian (chimpy) Harris and Johnny Montieth.
Carol Bergonzi and I used to catch the same bus home (no 48) and we were pretty close before she married Jimmy Barratt. I too was a friend of John Walsh and used to hang around the Stage Door cafe. Some people used to get confused because our names sounded so similar and to add to the confusion we had another mate called Dave Walsh.
The Ritz in Kings Heath was owned by the Regans who also owned the Plaza in Handsworth. I saw some great names at the Rit including Johnny Kid and the pirates, The Ronnettes, Alexis Korner, Alex Harvey and mny others.
There was a a record shop called the Diskery at the top end of Bristol Street. Erskine who worked there also DJ'd at the Elbow Room at the time as Micky Twitch, who was a close friend. Micky and I spent a lot of time riding around in my battered old Wolseley together. He was at the Elbow Room when Traffic first got together for gig. He told me that Steve Winwood had turned up there late one night with some of the Hellions and were going to form a band. This was hot news as Steve was still with Spencer Davies at the time. I know Mickey met a sad end (in Goa I thought) but I never heard the full story.
Other favourite venues were the Kardomah in New Street and the Picadilly Snooker club, were occasionally Johnny Prescott (Brum's own Heavyweight) used to play." John Balch 12/06/2012
"Hi john Balch just saw your stuff on line about Brum in the 60s sad news to tell you Jimmy passed away on may 14th here in vancouver .I remeber you we had lots of good times back there in the 60s still cant find jonny walsh! or Wendy Miller his wife let me know if you ever see them. been here in van since 1975, carol Bergonzi Barrett." carol Bergonzi Barrett 20/06/2012
"Tried to find what will be the last Whiskey Reunion, Bobby Fields, Brian (chimpy) Harris and Johnny Montieth.
I last saw Chimpy Harris at
Leo Ryan funeral apsox 2 years ago." BobbyS 08/07/2012
"STILL LOOKING FOR JOHN WALSH AND WENDY MILLER> IF PETER OR KEITH MILLER ARE OUT THERE PLEASE LET THEM KNOW I AM TRYING TO FIND THEM! CAROL BERGONZI BARRETT> VANCOUVER CANADA!" carol barrett bergonzi 09/07/2012
" this site is fab i worked at noel fashions in the late sixtys opp Burlington hotel,i remember pat hanford i would love to get in touch with any one who worked there .have not heard the name chimmpy harris for years.we used the west end on Saturdays.ceder club was great we wore long leather coats wide camel trousers daisy earings black and white shoes
oh memories" kathy weldon 12/07/2012
I have only just seen your message regarding the letter from my father. Do you still have it? If so we can make contact.
Michael Rose" michael rose 09/08/2012
"So sorry to hear Jimmy Barrett passed away.
Knew Jimmy and his brother "H" from many years ago, knew many of the people mentioned on this site,went to the same clubs from sixties & seventies, a little to young for the whisky though,
regards and good health to all" BRENDAN O'REILLY 31/08/2012
"Hi John Balch
Good to know you're still around - Hope life is good for you. Read your comments particularly interested about Micky Twitch.
If you are the John Balch I knew then you may remember me as I am Micky's sister (then known as Betty) and you and I were together for quite a while. I certainly remember your old Wolsey - drinking gallons of Duckhams Oil!!! I think we once drove to Cornwall in this
I recall most of the people you have mentioned. Whatever happened to Bobby Brown? I'm sure he was one of your close friends?
If you are the same John Balch I knew, then I remember your Nan, stepgrandad Ron, Your Mom & stepdad, your sister Adele (who was a great person) and visiting your Dad and stepmom.
I have many, many memories from those times. particularly of the stagedoor, clubs, and people. Do you remember Savo? He was an "old hippie" type but a good guy
My Brother Micky, has never been fogotten and I have found out more about his death and about Cindy, his wife. There are no bitter memories only good ones.
My life is good. I also have friends who have fantasic memories for clubs, bands etc.,
No problems if you don't respond (or if I have the wrong person) but if you are John, then I wish you wellxx" Liz pyke 01/09/2012
"MY MATES AND I ALWAYS WENT TO THE TOP RANK EVERY WEEKEND, GREAT LIVE GROUPS, THEN WE WOULD GO ROUND TO THE ALL NIGHT BUS TERMINUS IN TOWN WHERE YOU COULD CHAT UP THE GIRLS. THE LACARNO, AND THE RAINBOW WERE ALSO CLUBS TO GO TO , BUT WE PREFERRED THE TOP RANK . BEATLES SUITS WINKLE PICKERS ALWAYS DRESSED SMART,I REMEMBER HAVING TO WAIT A MONTH FOR A BEATLES SUIT , AS YOU COULD NOT GET ONE ANYWHERE" NOEL W 02/10/2012
"Message for Dave Banks - thank you so much for the info on Frank Brampton - Amazing!!!! - have passed on to my cousin in Canada and various other relatives - Thank you so much again." Lynn D 02/10/2012
"MESSAGE FOR DAVE BANKS Thank you so much Dave for that information posted a few months ago - how amazing. Just wondered if I could e-mail you directly as have a few questions you may be able to answer. Frank was my dads brother.
Many thanks again Lynn" Lynn D 02/10/2012
"i dee jayd at rebeccas early 70s with barry john ,pete king and pat martin great old times moved on worked every where happy times. my fav place tho was the book and candle in redditch in the early 80s. all gone now nite life seemed better back then." bob king 21/10/2012
"i was the first dj at the top rank in 1967,i came to bham after a stint on pirate radio city, from there i went on to radio one, then to radio birmingham then to radio oxford. never forget my days in bham also dj at the opposite lock, elbow room, and a host of other gigs. great music, great days, anyone remember tuesday nights at the rank soul night?" peter york 25/10/2012
"The worst thing about being a club dj in the early 70s was the money crap.I do think tho fewtrells vision of how a nightclub should be is something script writers of the day couldnt have bettered.Seeing a few comments from pete york reminded me about the guys i got my early inspiration from anyone remember the judge or tubby stan,he use to always do an hour spot halfway thro my saturday night show at rebeccas." BOB KING 30/10/2012
"have great memories of the cedar club constitution hill birmingham was the dj from 1979 till it closed around 1984 was offered the job by the dj paul beech just one night has i was walking past the club went in then that was it never looked back had so many lve groups there from dexys to duran duran was a great time on those decks when it closed chris fewtrell took me with him to eddies new club boogies worked in the wine bar upstairs then when that closed worked in the main part of the club has well has the sin bin downstairs and the new romantics upstairs it was great" terry savage 01/11/2012
"What a fantastic website, this has brought back so many memories for me. I owned a record shop in Selly Oak during the 1970's and also worked as a mobile DJ in the Midlands, sometimes filling in for Pete Allen and Peter King at Rebeccas in the Blue Soul room and for Noel Tilley at The Romulus. Saturday afternoons in my shop were absolute madness with many of the names mentioned above coming in to spend the afternoon listening to the latest releases and drinking Coca Cola! I remember one instance when a DJ called Jimmy Mack had all his records stolen, all the other Birmingham club DJs pooled their duplicate records and got him up and running again in a very short time. I also remember Erskine T, Funky Dunk, Clive T, and Sam T who used to work in the Birmingham Night clubs. Great times, very fond memories, and I still have my record collection to remind me!" Bob Raven 11/11/2012
"Great memories of birmingham in the50/60`s Just married in 1962 spent every friday night at the locarno/bali hai both members Ann still as her membership card (loverly picture of a blonde 17 year old. Then 11 night service home. any Gower treet kids around like to hear from you,trying to contact Phill Haris" Ray Beckett/Ann Coley 15/11/2012
"I was a student nurse in the 60's and we used to get free passes to get in the Rum Runner. Great nights there, but we had to be back in the nurses home by 11pm!!
Also lots of good groups playing at the 2 uni's. Free as well to us nurses. I remember Robert Plant playing there.
The Kardoma was a good place to wind down after a busy shift.
Those were the days." christine kennard 20/11/2012
I do not see any mention of a club called 'daddy long legs' in Camp Hill. Really rough but good music played. Someeher to go when the normal clubs finished." Tom flaherty 22/11/2012
"I think that the 'Daddy Long Legs' Club had been previously named 'The Dolls Club'. I have a picture of this building, boarded up and fenced off just prior to demolition, but there is no way to upload it here." Bob Raven 25/11/2012
"Just found the site. Like everyone else here I've just had the greatest time remembering all these places. I particularly remember the Stage Door Club as it was a hang- out for me for years, first ..after school, then after work. Keep seeing Carol Barrett here ... Were you the Carol who played a spanish guitar brilliantly? Was the placed owned by brothers, Tony and Phil Woodward? I also remember twins who worked there Kris and Karol. They worked at the Birmingham Rep." Marilyn 29/11/2012
"still trying to find john walsh and wendy miller," carol barrett bergonzi 30/11/2012
"Nobody has mentioned the great local bands that used to play the Birmingham clubs. I used to help out Carl Wayne and the Vikings and later went on to be Roady for the Move. We all used to meet up at the pie stall outside Snow Hill Station I used to buy Robert Plant cups of tea there then he went on to be Led Zepplin I often wonder if he remembers those days" allen harris 01/12/2012
"I wonder If there is anyone out there who used to go to Alex coffee bar just off Smallbrook ringway back in the early 60,s. we all used to turn up on our pride and joy motorbikes, mine was a 1962 bonnie, I can't seem to find anyone to share those memories with also nobody seems to have any photos unless you know different.
I am still riding a bike today. Happy days" Dave Robinson 02/12/2012
"Anyone have photos or memories of Mickey crotch Jones.
A D.J. at Elbow Room & other places.
From what I understand quite well known on Birmingham circuit.
He travelled to Goa with his wife.
Mentioned as quite a main character in a book called 'In The Web of the Spider, written by an American, travelling through India / Afghanistan.
Mickey was my uncle.I'd like to know more about him." rich jones 05/12/2012
i'm looking for any info or pictures off the dolphin cafe.
101 coventry street Digbeth.
iv'e reason to belive my late uncle may have stayed there in the early 1970s
william" william mcgrath 06/12/2012
"Wow, this brings back some fantastic memories, went to Broad Street last night and how it's changed, the clubs today don't hold a candle to all tho clubs, I went to all of the ones mentioned in the 60's & early 70's Brum was a great place to be in those days. Steve Carter & Nic Wood, with regard to driving the Zamboni, in the late 60's it was driven by a mate of mine at the time Brian Bacon, great days and a great site, so glad I found it." Neil Spare 16/12/2012
like to speak again to John Balch.
John hope it's you and hope you're happy.
My family (and of course me especially)
want to find out more about Michael - warts amd all.
You know we always had a big family and thid year there was over 50 people including many children - 2 of them my grandchidlen (How mad is that, when do grandchildren arrive???) at our family "get together"
Love to know how life haa turned out for you, really hope it has been good.
Would be nice to know how you are and how Adele is, I won't expect quick return (or any) Bettyx" Liz pyke 23/12/2012
"OMG, I suddenly remembered my old friend Eddie Ruhier, organist at the Silver Blades Ice Rink in the 60's and was curious to see what he looked like now - still the same! Read Bob Raven's comment about the Record Shop in Selly Oak (aka smelly poke!!) Bob, did you buy it from Duncan Finlayson (Funky Dunk) - I was friends with Dunk for years and lived in his house with a bunch of other folks. It was called the Top Ten Shop. I know you good folks out there will remember Les Ross and John Henry on the Ross and Henry Show, both friends of mine years ago. I remember Erskine T, and Tubby Stan and Rebeccas and Barbarellas and the Pie Wagon... OMG I can't believe I found this site. My best friend Ros and I used to skate all the time at Silver Blades and we still keep in touch.
I'm trying to find my cousin Janet Dudley, she introduced me to music when I was about 5 years old. She worked at Avery Scale Company in Digbeth and then emigrated to the U.S somewhere - of course I was just a kid and nobody would tell me anything. She loved Elvis Presley!!! Didn't we all. My other cousins in the same family were Frances and Vincent.
Loved reading everyone's comments - used to go to the Opposite Lock, Top Rank, etc. and I well remember the night of the bombing -was not far away from the Mulberry Bush with Les and John and a bunch of others and we were headed down there for a drink before going dancing when the thing went off. Brought back memories.
Also cider and blackcurrant - no-one's ever heard of that in Canada!!
Remember ending up in the Tow Rope on many a night, and does anyone remember the jazz sessions at the Grand Hotel, Colmore Row - Think they were either Sunday afternoons or Thursday evenings, memory's a bit dodgy about that.
Oh and I remember going to see the Move (at the Plaza Handsworth I think) and meeting this sweet photographer called John, who sent me a bunch of photos from the night.
Oh and getting on the 159 bus from Brum to Coventry to see Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Amen Corner and Engelbert Humperdinck (aaargh) on the same bill, when all our parents thought we were whizzing round the skating rink!! Those were the days, we had a very good time...was nice to be in at the beginning of the real change in music, don't think we realised how lucky we were at the time.
Anyway i could go on for ever, so will stop!
Thanks for bringing back all these fond memories...
Jules" Jules 24/12/2012
"Great site. Can anyone remember a'club' in Great Barr, I think. They had diners and served sophisticated food like chicken in the basket. They also had groups and singers. It was aiming to be more up-market than regular night clubs. What was it called? I give in!" Liz 31/12/2012
I think the name of "club" you are thinking of in Hamstead was "Kings".
I've spent over an hour reading these messages etc on here. I was born in 1955 so I missed a lot of the 1960s stories etc, but I was around the city in the early 70s, I remember Rum Runner, Barbarellas, Sloopys, Rebeccas, Opposite Lock etc etc and of course the Elbow Room in Newtown. Living in Indonesia now, but fond memories of Brum." Graham Batchelor 01/01/2013
"i remember the the dolls club very well it was owned by if i remember Burt and Vic barton had agood stage some singing and of course a stripper called Monice also the best game of three card bragg in brum won and lost a few good pots their what great times they where. could go on with all my thoughts but they would fill a book sufice to say the sixties in brum was as close to heaven than you can get.still miss my home town dennis brummy beech" dennis beech 06/01/2013
"who remembers smokey joes out at northfield apposite the travellers rest pub all us bikies met there then up to boundry coffee bar at west brom great times brummy beech" dennis beech 06/01/2013
"Jules, my Record Shop was directly opposite the Midland Bank, a few yards from Dawlish Road. The Top Ten Shop was not much farther up the Bristol Road, opposite a large open space used as a car park. Duncan went on to greater things starting up 'Loading Bay Records'in 1989, but I have since found out that he passed away in 1996." Bob Raven 06/01/2013
"There used to be a group that played at the rainbow rooms above the coop called the Everglades. What happened to them?" Sue C 06/01/2013
"As a teenager i used to work for a big electrical company by the flyover in digbeth i remember the dolls club it was across the road from where i worked.I came out of work one night having been working late and there was a man outside who said he needed an electrician as all there power had gone off and could I come over,I said I am not supposed to but he was very persuasive and I said I would go .He took me over the road to the dolls club. the place was in darkness ,after a while I managed to fix the problem and restore power, this mede them very grateful and the owner gave me a very large amount of cash,.he then l;ed me through the building through a dressing room , now I was a very innocent 19 year old brought up in a very strict irish catholic familly , so you can imagine my supprise when I found myself in this room with three completely naked girls who had just finished their act. I was then taken to the bar and given several free drinks . I did mnany electrical jobs at the dolls club after and worked at the owners house and was always paid well and could go in the club free whenever a liked .HAPPY DAYS." joseph fitzpatrick 06/01/2013
" anybody remember the plaza in hampstead tonsaw beatles there i worked at i.c.i.kynock wks.witton great friday nights i also remember the owners of mothers phil john gary i worked as a doorman at the railway selly oak loved the wadering minstrel" peter bell 09/01/2013
" sorry i think the plaza was in handsworth oalso the windsor pub close to rackhams where ialso worked and later played football for them later renamed windsor athletic great website happy days still go back to brum once a yaer to visit mums grave" peter bell 10/01/2013
"Does anyone remember the El Sombrero coffee bar. I worked there as a kid around 1959.
They opened a club upstairs called the key club. where I also worked" mark smith 13/01/2013
"Reply to Bob Raven's message to me - Thanks for replying Bob, the memory's a bit hazy as to what was where these days, been a long time since I was in Brum. Sad to hear Duncan passed so long ago, anyway he's probably still doing his funky Dunk dance in the great dancehall in the sky!!!
Cheers, Jules" jules 17/01/2013
"i used to work with a man called johm mickelright at a pipework company called ae philips&son i lent him two little richard records it was about 1968 if you are reading this john or if anybody knows him i would like them back if you still have them you can put message on here thanks joe" joseph fitzpatrick 17/01/2013
"does anybody remember the brunswick club on the mosely road" joseph fitzpatrick 21/01/2013
"Bit of sad news i heard recently was Frankie Lee,old town jocky,passed away about 12 months ago.I think he'd been in a bad way for quite some time.Still i have a few good memories of him ,found him a nice bloke ." Bob King 27/01/2013
"Somebody asked me about Pat Martin recently, was he the man that that got all the nightclub DJs together, formed some sort of union and gave all the club owners a load of grief sometime in the 1970s. I think yes was the answer to that but the details remain a bit fussy from back then plus i'd stopped working on the Brum nightclub circuit, for a while because the money was so bad.I do remember the DJ mags and some of the press couldn't get any photo's of him, not that he was shy or anything, far from it. Anyway if his image remains a mystery here's a clue ,i went to a Santana concert in the 70s and on stage ,you've guest it,not 1 but 10 Pat Martin lookalikes.Sorry Pat." Bob King 28/01/2013
"I didn't see the rollar skating rink in the sandpits being mentioned, do you remember the DJ called Doc? Wonder what he is doing now. Stan Blackburn" Stan 05/02/2013
"@ BobbyS Well done for that item about the Whisky, took me way back. Good old Days never to be relived mores the pity. The names got me aswell Sean and his Brother think it was Paul,Duffy,Bugsy what about Big Colin I used to bump into him on a regular basis.
We definetly had fun in them Days going down to London West End after an Allnighter or heading for Watford Gap Services. I think one of the guys was called Colin and he was the only Mod with a Bonny instead of a Scooter. Was John Walsh who everybody is asking about was that Blocker?" Ron Arrowsmith (Jagger) 05/02/2013
"sorry to hear about frankie lee. i was catering manager at the silver blades in the late 60s.good dj and nice bloke.
nic" nic wood 07/02/2013
"Does anyone remember the owner of faces international?" Sandra 11/02/2013
"Message for John Balch
Hope you respond, would be just good to hear from you. If you read this just say hello." Liz pyke 01/03/2013
" I used to pretty well live In Faces back the early 80's...mostly on the dancer floor." BRUCE QURESHI 03/03/2013
"I think I must have visited all the clubs in Birmingham as some time as I was engaged to a memeber of a local band The Uk Bonds ( does anyone remember them?) I used to go to the Top Rank suit on Thursday nights with a group from work. We used to have a great time.Erdington also had a great music scene The Queens Head was a great venue for up and coming bands. I saw lots of bands and artists that did realy well. Roy Woods, Stevie Windwood to name just a couple" lesley 09/03/2013
"I was a regular at the Midland Jazz Club, Digbeth from 1957 to 1963, every Saturday and Monday night. Maurice from Canada mentioned the recording "Tribute to Madge" by The Second City Jazzmen. I have a copy of this record and new the trombone player, Barry Phillips who,unfotunately died two years ago. I also new Stevie, the dancing girl, she was friends with my wife Sue. More info available if you are able to contact me. Derrick Mason" Derrick Mason 09/03/2013
"I can remember seeing the Rolling Stones at the Odeon in New Street in about 1967, can you imagine it would have to be the O2 or the LG arena now.I loved the opposite lock night club and often used to go home in the early hours and go straight out to work next morning.I went out with a guy called Tom Jayes in 1972 does anyone know of him,we used to go to the Rainbow Casino in Edgbaston.Worked for a while at the Bang & Oluffson shop same time as the terrible pub bombings.So many memories of Birmingham in 60's & 70's great times great clubs and great clothes.Maureen Andrews was Cassidy" Maureen Andrews nee Cassidy 10/03/2013
"Does anyone remember 'Lunchtime Bop at the Casino'? I started work in 1957 at the City Surveyors Office in the Civic Centre.I remember Wednesday lunchtimes running across town to the Casino in The Old Square." Derrick Mason 13/03/2013
"Does anybody remember the BRS disco on the Bromford lane where alternate weeks 1 week Rockers and 1 week Mods until there was a big fight between both and then it closed and then there was the Tyburn House Pub where most of the big groups played it was where The IDOL RACE played who went on to be The Move and the start of the Moody Blues and there used to be a Disco in the lounge every Wednesday and Friday and not forgetting the Carlton Club in Erdington and then went on to be the famous MOTHERS....I used to be a Rocker and we would meet up in Pype Hayes park and it was quite a sight to see the motor bikes lined up and some nights we would go Ten Pin Bowling on the Chester Road on the opposite side of Boldmere Road and I can remember The Hunters Moon (Castle Bromwich)being the first Psychedelic Discotheque in the area.....Great Memories many thanks for this website." Allan Kemp 21/03/2013
"Derrick, yes, I do remember the Casino I used to go on Wednesday and Saturday lunchtime rock and roll session. Amazed nobody has mentioned that fantastic club in Castle Bromwich - the Bel-Air Beat Club that Alan and I ran during the mid sixties. Going back to the midland jazz club; what was the name of the coffee bar we used to visit after leaving the club? it was opposite the central fire station - I've just remembered; Andrea Drucker's" Mike P 22/03/2013
"Carol Barrett Bergonzi. I been looking for you for ages. Sorry tohear about Jimmy. Used to see a lot of bands at B'ham Town Hall. Jethro Tull, Black sabbath, deep Purple, Curved Air The Who. Also was a visitor to Le Metro, and Rebecca's Tavern in the Town. Was in city center on the night of the bombings. Had to walk all the way home to Great Barr as buses were stopped." kate dyson-mcilroy 22/03/2013
"how can i get in touch with carol barrett bergonzi?" kate dyson-mcilroy 22/03/2013
"Yes, I remember the Bel-Air club, I had my stag party there. I didn't know you in the Casino days? The coffee bar was La Boheme, they were good times." Derrick Masonu 23/03/2013
"Just off the city centre scence does anybody remember 'The shop that stood on a bob' on the Alum Rock Road just past Bowyer Road towards the Gate in the 1960's ,it was similar I suppose to the 'pound saver type' shops nowadays I have spoken to several people around at that era and they can;'t recall it at all !!, think it closed late 60's or very early 70's..?" Sid Smith 24/03/2013
well well what an amazing read, i too grew up in birmingham, born in balsall heath 1940,s spent many a good year in the pubs and clubs the city, from whisky ago ago to brum cavern, hippodrome rum runner and more,i still have great thoughts about my time there, there also were Paul and Shaun Mahoney ( gangsters of the day )with guns, there to was Barney, and chippy Harris and pete Harris all bad guys of there time, I know because i new them well, we were mates and very good friends, myself i don,t get into the bad stull, i liked having a laugh and going out to meet peple, parties, bands, and the daily pub crall, hehe
that was me in the 60,s in 1968-1970 meet a wonderfull girl Lynn Darwood from out of town we spent many a late night at pubs and parties plus travelling the world to rock festivals meeting and seeing rock stars from Bob dylan, hendrix, who, zappa, beefheart..........so many on my list,
we moved from birmingham in 1972 to cornwall and traveled back to birmingham on weekend visits 1972-74 to see old friends and meet up in the tavern in the town, we were going to meet friends for a drink and food the day the pub got blown up, i parked my car up and we were walking to the pub tavern in the town with my wife ( lynn darwood ) and some friends we meet earler in the day, it was by chance we meet another friend in the street who said the pub had been hit with a bomb, lots of thoughts and fear had set in,we turned around, went back to the car and left the city for cornwall, we never went back, only to visit our familys,
what became of our friends is unknowed, we know a few had died of drugs, drink, and jail for some, and some friends just left the city.
I still hold great thoughts about my life in the 60,s birmingham its a wonderfull city, hehe i still chat and tell stories to my children and friends about the 60,s, my life with the bad and the good people of birmingham
regards Terry" Terry Brampton 26/03/2013
"hello to all, i have question, if anybody remember the name of the pub on the corner of bristol street and hill street in 1958? it's really important for me so i will be very grateful for this information :) thank you..." mala 26/03/2013
"I have spent hours reading this forum, and as a Scot who married a Brummie at All Saints In Kings Heath in 1968, I remember almost every name and pub mentioned.
Happy days indeed. Does any one remember the Peddler brothers who bounced at almost every pub and club around Digbeth. I remember they worked in the meat market in Bradford Street, I think they were carcase swingers or cutters, both hardy lads.
I could write a book about Brum in the 60s and 70s, maybe I should!
The greatest thing about those times was that legendary bands played two feet away from you, and you could drink with them at the bar during the breaks.
What about the All Stars Jazz Club under the arches at Snowhill?
George Melley was resident crooner, and Monty Sunshine was there every other week.
I could go on for hours but better not.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 29/03/2013
"By the way, the King Kong statue was last in Scotland at the Ingliston Market near Edinburgh next to the Scottish Show Ground.
Haven't been over for a year or so and can't say it is still there.
Cheer 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 29/03/2013
"hi to everyone whose comments i have enjoyed reading,and the memories of venues alas no more of the 60s and 70s pub and club scene in brum.one venue which everyone seems to have overlooked was bogarts opposite the abc cinema in new st,covering three floors,friday nights were amazing,also the grapes and the alhambra in hill st behind them was rebeccas where my first wife sheila was bar and restaurant manageress along with her best friend anna previously she had worked at the la dolce vita and the castaways and at barbarelas and the cedar.on sundays when the clubs shut everyone headed of to the cedar club,it was a gathering of all pub and club staff to let their hair down till the early hours of monday.brum bands who had been gigging across the country always headed for the cedar and most times it ended with impromtu jam sessions with some big household names.remember seeing joe cocker and the grease band at rebeccas on a monday night he was late coming on stage but when he did he brought the house down absolutely amazing,saw david bowie at barbarelas get booed off stage instead of singing he decided to read poetry,did not go down well with the audience,freddie starr same venue brilliant,remember the night went to see lulu at the dolce vita,place was jam packed,listned to her on the staircase could not go any further.does anyone remember the name of the club situated at the swan yardley sister club to the la dolce vita,think it was a girls name,also the swan pub,longest bar in europe above was a fantastic dancehall where sunday dinnertimes they had live bands on,the breedon cross at cotteridge,navigation inn wooten wawen,solihull civic hall resovoir earlswood.a lot of great places alas sadly gone under the bulldozer,but the memories remain,steve." steven hudson 02/04/2013
"Iremember going to the La Dolsavita and bounce over to the Lacarno in Hurst Street and after a belly full of pop with a chick on your arm straight to the Garry Owen Stratford Road me Lindsy Hustler and Phil Wells Great Times" Philip Rudge 05/04/2013
"Just reading Steven Hudsons bit about places going under the bulldozer . I was doing a little job in Redditch the other week & i dropped into the shopping centre in Churchill only to find a pile of rubble where the Book & Candle once stood . I could have cried , it was my last serious residency , as a DJ ,& it probably holds some of my favourite memories .After working since the late 60s on the Brum nightclub circuit i finaly landed on a place i called home for a number of years loved the music loved the punters sad to see it gone ." Bob King 08/04/2013
"What a trip down memory lane. Of course I visited all the clubs and pubs especially the Duck at Harborne where we found out where the best parties were being held or who was going to what club. The one thing that really sticks out is how "safe" it was in Brum for women. We used to catch the late bus at St Philips Churchyard but if a car swung by and asked where we lived, we thought nothing of getting into the car. We never had any trouble with the guys at any time and sometimes resulted in a date!. Real "gentlemen" - can I say that? And no trouble walking quiet streets to reach home." Marlene Chamberlain(Rudge) 14/04/2013
"Going back to my time of working at the Book & Candle the main man, the big promoter on the southern operating parameters of South Brum was a guy named Stuart Gargon .Now don't get me wrong,or anything ,i loved Stuart to bits......why shouldn't i..he gave me work ,he was genuinly a nice man .The big problem was ,as i had with Fewtrell & one or two others that you was a commodity , you turned up , supplied Â£10000 of sound & lighting gear ,got paid ,went home & appeared at the next gig .I was doing a residency at the Westmead hotel every Monday , pulling a good crowd 300/400 most weeks..Stuart was obviously tracking this...;Hopwood ;that was part of his manor .Got booked for the Book & Candle .1st week me a crap band & 50 punters ,Friday night as well .Done it for 3 weeks ,i t was shite ,so i sat down with the promoter,the manager & a few other people & give it to them .A good band or no band that's what you need[being quietly confident that money come into this & i would get the night to myself ,Dictate the musical policy & earn a load of money as a reward for my forsight ]. As things turned out i got the night & Saturday night & guess what i totally rammed the place , wall to wall punter 300 / 400 punters . My reward Â£10 a night extra ,i did the same for him at the Mackadown in Kitts Green on a Wednesday night 400 plus punters ,& that's when we parted company 'i had lost my driving license tho' .But these people wondered why no loyalty....and i put it to them today ,after so many years..igave you people a professional service ,i filled every venue no matter what night and was treated as a commodity. Still that's an eager youth for you....if only i could go back....hindsight ." Bob King 14/04/2013
"Gary Owen now that brings back memories .It was within walking distance from our house ,so when i wasn't working i chilled out at the Monica Pub followed by the Garry Owen use to meet up with Siddy Singh ,Elton Webb ,Dougy Edwards , Roy Deakin & a few other Small Heath boys .You could stay in the Gary until the sun come up .Sometimes we would go into the Raz around the corner for a curry on the way home ,until Siddy got his ticket .Don't know what it is with pakistani's & Indians .Many a time i left that place ,walked home past the George & my old mate Shamus [the plasterer ] would be standing on the car park waiting for a lift to work .Iwouldn't mind but i had to get to work as well .Did enjoy it tho'...seemed less complicated back then...and i still see some of them old friends even now [bunch of old farts]." Bob King 15/04/2013
"John Dangerfields memories are exellent,just one up-date,The Whiskey A Go- Go was located above what was known as 'Drum Corner'-John Bright St and Navigation St.
As a Mod in the 60's the numorous venue's that we frequented were The Midnite City in Dibeth,The Factory-half way down Gas St,The Rum Runner-Broad St,The Metro-Livery St,The Rainbow-above The Co-op in High St,The Penthouse and Cedar-Constution Hill,Elbow Room-Aston,The Carlton and Queens Head-Erdington,Locarno-Hurst St and of course not forgetting the Major Mod hang-out The West End-Suffolk St.All great places and great faces,by comparison today as a fit bloke in his 60's I have to say Birmingham clubland is Crap-honest but true!Keep the memories alive for God's sake,thats all we seem to have left." Colin Ford 21/04/2013
"in reply to bob king I knew stuart gargon very well he took on the tardibigge pub in redditch in the 1980s and lost a fortune on it. he also had the red lion pub on the portway, long since gone and now a showmans winter quarters. his son Ashley is the landlord at the goose pub in redditch.the last Iheard of stuart he was driving a lorry for a living. he is also a double of Noel Edmunds and has often been mistaken for him" jor fitzpatrick 26/04/2013
"i worked as a dj at the le metro.with carl. i took over the soul night,in 1967 when he
left.work till 1971 .with dj peter barclay and the graham tyson trio.any one remenber?." peter james 27/04/2013
"sure i know you both lynn darwood and terry Brampton jimmy and i lived in woodfiled road kings heath. carolBarrett used to be Bergonzi now living in vancouver canada came in 76. sad to say jimmy died last may.." carol barrett bergonzi 29/04/2013
"Reading Colin Fords article about clubland has a lot of truths about it . I suppose back then clubs were crawling out of the dancehall days ,the music had been virtually reinvented & people started to view their freetime a lot better .Like i've often said coming out of the 60s into the 70s Frewtrell redesigned peoples perception of what a nightclub should be like & i personally think that set a template which many rivals tried to copy for 20 years following .Infact i think Fewtrell deserves a star on Broad Street for his contribution to Birmingham nightlife .Like everything life moves on ,things change and a lot more distractions ,to young peoples lives ,do occure in this day & age .Life isn't so much of a social thing anymore with all this modern technology about & that's what creates the crapness & sadness in our modern clubland[and lives]. Still we can only move forward ." Bob King 30/04/2013
"Back to Stuart Gargon .I was a bit saddened to hear about what he was doing now .In respect to the man he ran some pretty amazing promotions in some quite remote places with a great deal of success .I've always admired success ,at any level ,and in my mind Stuart should have ended up a wealthy man .I can only think he took a gamble too far .In my previous article ,that mentioned him ,i wasn't having a direct knock at him ,i was trying to imply how totaly naive i was as a young man .Shame ." Bob King 30/04/2013
"King Kong has been at Penrith Market Cumbria for the last few years.
He's working his way back home!" John Mack 02/05/2013
"sorry bob(king) Igave you the wrong pub stewarts son keeps the duck pub in redditch not the goose. the duck is by tesco on oakenshaw if you want to visit you might bump into stewert regards joe" joe fitzpatrick 06/05/2013
"After carrying the debate on about certain promoters of old & not just the one i mentioned but others as well a few old friends recon that between the early to mid 80s quite a few pub gaffers started getting greedy & decided to attempt to run their own promotions . Thinking back yes a few did & one mate reminded me of a few pub managers who tried to screw me into the ground .Thats about the time i started doing weddings & other private functions instead of pub & club work . I say one thing about one or two promoters who i worked for back in the day they were greedy enough to make a success of venues & i don't mean that in a negative or bad way......pub gaffers run pubs..........
promoters run discos & clubs thats how it should of worked .Shame about the crap money tho' ." Bob King 07/05/2013
"I wish those times were still here,it was safe and great to be able to walk to the late night bus service.I would not do it now even in daylight.WHY ?" Philip Rudge 27/05/2013
"Does anyone remember the Alambra in hill street,live heavy rock music,then on way home ,a bag of roast potatoes on the corner of hill street and navigation street every friday night.Sometimes pop into Rebeccas seven street named after Eddy Fewtrals first daughter." Philip Rudge 29/05/2013
"On many occasions[mainly due to being skint]]i've walked from Rebeccas all the way to my house back in Small Heath carrying 2 boxes of 45s .Never had a spot of trouble ,infact ,back in the day i've had people stop in cars & offer me a lift home .Yes it was better back then a bit safer too .Couldn't imagine doing that sort of thing now ." Bob King 05/06/2013
"message for bob king stewart gargon is at the crabmill on the hagley rd at old swinford i saw him last night he is doing very well the place was packed i mentioned your name and he remembered you he is ok. call and see him" joe fitzpatrick 09/06/2013
"does anyone remember the old mill northfield when they had some good rock bands on,there was a group called Frank Zimmer and the frames brilliant.Always a full house." Philip Rudge 12/06/2013
"For john dangerfield, the pub opposite lewis's was called the cabin,my wife(pat Carrie) and her, then best friend,(Sandra Hughes), worked behind the bar,in the early 80's, not for long though,on my wifes first night the relief manager balled her out for messing up pulling her first pint, so she told him stick his job, and walked out, swiftly, followed by sandra shouting, " wait for me",leaving him with no bar staff on a busy saturday night in Brum, Tom Whiteley" Tom Whiteley 04/07/2013
"how do i make a comment on this website" Tom Whiteley 08/07/2013
"I have been on this site for over 5 hours,i am in 60s heaven.Born in steward st Ladywood 1948, moved to Edgbaston aged 8,went to Lee Mason sec. school, remember all the clubs mentioned, used to go to em under age as my eldest bro managed a few. Best Sunday I've spent on my comp." Dave way 14/07/2013
"I used to own Mainline private hire taxi firm, Greenway St, Small Heath in the 70's.Did all the clubs, many were Irish like Brendan Joyce's club The Garry Owen and his brother Desi Joyce's club the Golden Gloves.The Shamrock. There was the Boundary at Acocks Green with Barny the "bouncer" on the door. The four Provences, the Emerald Club Small Heath. The gay club The Nightingale started it's life in "Camp Hill", Small Heath, how about that? Who remembers the club owned by one of the Fewtrells next to the villa ground, could have been called the Pelican. Only open a couple of months. The Castaways where Tom Jones made his debut in Brum. The Gaylords, surfside stop,The Cascade.I also worked as a barman at The Dolce Vita around 1967, saw all the big stars of the day many from the states. Would have worked there for free. Often wonder where all my old taxi driver are these days, get in touch if your still alive and kicking?" Terry Hood 04/08/2013
"I remember a jazz club in the1950s/60s called "the Maryland j.c "Iwent there on Thursday nights , with friends Met a nice girl named Julie Lynch lived in or by Cato street dudes ton I really enjoyed those times. Does anyone know her ,or wally & Jingles or Maureen Pyat also from duddeston. ...it was a long time ago. From Doug." Doug. Field 17/08/2013
"Derrek, I also used to go to the Midland Jazz Club in Digbeth and about 1957/8 working in the town centre, like you, I would spend my Wednesday lunchour bopping at the Casino. Later there was The Bermuda Club in Navigation Street, where you would have to knock on the door for entry, and of course, the Sombrero. The Locarno and Tudor Club upstairs on a Saturday night. The Kardomah in New Street where you would always see someone you knew whatever time of day you went in. No one has mentioned the Moat House Club in Moat Row either - I spent a lot of time there in the early 60s. Judy Tuck" Judy Tuck 19/08/2013
"Does any remember a local group called Body and Soul who used to play at Rebeccas night club in the early 70s" Amy Jones 01/09/2013
"Judy, our paths must have crossed in the 57/58 we hung out at all the same places. I remember lunchtime going to El Torro in Ethel Street (off New Street, also La Fiesta and El Sombrero but best of all La Boheme (opposite the Fire Station) after the Midland Jazz Club. I also went to the Kardomah in New Street every night straight from work to meet friends. Derrick Mason 06/09/2013" Derrick Mason 06/09/2013
"One of the things I used to love about the Brummie pubs in the 60s and 70s was the Gents Only rooms. Almost every M&B and Ansells pub had a G.O. Many were open to ladies on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights, and back then, there was none of the sexist nonsense as there were also Family Rooms. The G.O.s were wonderful bars, almost every seat was the sole property of a local guy who took up post at the same time every night and played dominoes and crib with the same three blokes at the same table.
And what's more, the only time I ever saw a fight in a G.O. was at the weekends when the 'ladies' were allowed in!
Call me a dinosaur, but I think segregated bars were wonderful thing.
Something else I thought was great was that almost every pub had a Crown Bowling Green and there was a fantastic city wide league.
I used to bowl for the Gun Barrels in Edgbaston. Like many other pubs, the greens were lost for car parking and bowling leagues died.
I was also a member of the Tally Ho Bowling and Social Club which used to be just opposite the Edgbaston Cricket Ground below the gates to Cannonhill Park.
Happy days they were.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 07/09/2013
" what a fabulous site this is, I am glad I came across it, I have just discovered the great guy Frankie Lee passed away last year, he was a wonderful boss to us all when we worked in the opposite lock Gas street, I ran the medieval banquets there,we had some good fun, and met some characters, any one remember us wenches?" barb 09/09/2013
"Hello My name is Diane, I went to the plaza in Handsworth In the 60's and remember competing in the wood-bine rock competition and won. Great memories Of the Plaza, My mother Lil worked in the Cloak room. I hope somebody can get back to me with memories! Bye" Diane Field 09/09/2013
"You may be interested to know that there is a Bogarts Facebook page with lots of members." Philip 12/09/2013
"Hi Barb, I remember the wenches. I was a guest at one of the first medieval nosh ups at the Lock, it was an afternoon bash for the Press to launch it. Within a year every club and feeding pub in Brum was doing medieval nosh nights, and the poachers who worked the fields between the Maypole at Alcester Lanes End and villages made a bomb flogging hares, rabbits and deer (from the stately homes around Alcester and Stratford)
to all the pubs and clubs who were doing medi-nights.
The game pies were usually semi-raw, but the wenches were a hoot, and didn't stand too much nonsense from the guests.
I still believe Brum was streets ahead of London as far as clubs and night life was concerned. The Smoke was contolled by old firms of entrenched gangsters and Brum was still fairly free of the mob syndrome throughout the 60s.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 19/09/2013
"Hi anybody out there remember Key Hill before the flyover was built Harry Smiths iron mongers and C.A.Sothers the radio and TV Shop I worked for Sothers in the 60`s. One of the 3 Ray`s" Ray Beckett/Ann Coley 05/10/2013
"Hi anybody remember Hockley Hill With Harry Smith iron mongers and C.A.Sothers Electricians radio and TV shop in the 60`s also the 3 Rays that worked there" Ray Beckett/Ann Coley 05/10/2013
"I remember Harry Smith's in the 70s. We had a bronze foundry in Barr Street, we used to buy padlocks for our Safety Valves for our main company Gresswell Valves. Derrick Mason" Derrick Masonu 07/10/2013
"Wow, Happy memories, I used to go to the Alhambra, Tavern in The Town, Mulberry Bush and the Parisian in Cannon Street and many other of the city pubs,also to many of the nightclubs mentioned in particular the Top Rank, yes Pete York was the DJ and also the Joe Ward Band, does anyone remember the Warwick Room at the Top Rank with the lit up glass dance floor? My husband remembers having a pie from Aleks and also going to the Bombay and Kismet curry houses, he also used to go to the Mackadown and saw some of the early sixties pop groups the Idle Race, Them and Slade, I went to Mothers and saw Caravan and Eire Apparent, what a special time the sixties were I could go on for ever what a fantastic evening I've had reading all the comments it all only seems like yesterday!" Margaret Hancy - Klajne 09/10/2013
"Having discovered this wonderful site many months ago I decided to put pen to paper & write about my experiences growing up as a DJ in the late 60s early 70s in & around Brum. So any one who's interested or just curious google 'Bob Kings Northern Soul Archive' & spend an hour back in time." Bob King 11/10/2013
"Just thinking back to the 60s in Brum, there was nothing like the anti-social underage drinking there is now.
Sure there were youngsters getting hold of booze, but they were usually 16 and 17 year olds serving their apprenticeships.
I remember an incident at the Cross Guns in Kings Heath in 1969, I think the gaffer was Jim McLean, but I may be wrong.
My missus and I, who were married the year before at All Saints in Kings Heath at the age of 21, went in one night for a jar in the front snug.
The barmaid, who we didn't know, asked how old the wife was, and we laughed and told her we would both love to see 18 again.
She told the boss we were underage, he came out and asked us if we were old enough to drink, we told him we were, but he called the cops.
The cops arrived and asked us to leave, but we dug our heels in and refused, gave our names and addresses, and the addresses of both sets of parents plus telephone numbers, and despite threats of being arrested, we stood our ground.
Ten minutes later, a tray with a vodka and orange and a pint of mild arrived, with profound apologies from the boss, and a message that there was another drink in the till.
He did come and speak to us later on, but still said he would do the same again and advised us to carry out birth certificates as we looked far too young to drink.
I have to say that now, that old problem is a boon as we are both nearer 70 than 60, and people say we should still be at work!
The only reason we had no problems drinking at the Highbury at the bottom of Dads Lane in Moseley was the wife's old man was a regular and we had been drinking in there for years and knew the gaffer well.
I know there was underage boozing going on at the time, but nothing like the scale it is now, and nowhere near as blatant.
Times have changed for the worst, and all you old uns on this site know we lived through the best of times in the 60s and 70s in Birmingham and the West Midlands.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Rab 19/10/2013
"still trying to find john walsh and wendy miller. its been such a long time! love to hear from you both. carol bergonzi barrett. vancouver canada." carol barrett bergonzi 22/10/2013
"Aj, the Shoop Shoop over the Golden Eagle on Hill Street was started by two design students at Aston called Zac and Rik." Bob 22/10/2013
"Hi Carol, don't suppose you ever came across a Carol McDonald from Port Coquitlam who used to work for Telus in Vancouver?
Cheers, Rab." Bob Grey 23/10/2013
"I'm currently doing a bit of research on BRUMS NIGHTLIFE. Can anyone tell me if there was a club off New Street called the Piccadilly in the late 60s early 70s ?" Bob King 28/10/2013
"What a great site for memories.Worked at cedar rebs and barbs the only Cockney in 100 miles." BRYAN HAMILTON 04/11/2013
"I remember King Kong! It belonged to a motor dealer, a friend of my dad's called Mike Shanley! thought he was a Michael Cain lookalike! He's dead now, RIP! What a character! Anybody remember the Aero Club up just past the Airport! Like a scout hut on stilts but it was the place to be ona Friday night! If you weren't there you were square! Remember the Elbow Room in aston! A woman who I worked with, her husband was a bouncer on the door and he used to let me and my mates in for nowt! Alright then, we may have bought him the odd drink now and again for his favour! Sloopy's! Downstairs in corporation street near the law coursts. I was only 17 and met Pat McMahon, a Scottish footballer who played for the Blues or Villa at the time! Can't remember! He had a Lotus Cortina! What a car to have at the time! Nice chap! Used to go to the Garden House on the Hagley road and then onto the Dirty Duck and finish up at the Romulus. It was then called Liberty's and now its a big Indian chain restaurant apparently. The good old days! Used to live next door to Carl Chinn was well when a kid in Moseley. We were about ten at the time! He had a swimming pool in his garden so was the envy of the neighbours, apart from the noise!!" sue giles 29/11/2013
"I've got sooo many memories from back then. I used to go to Locarno, Top Rank, Rainbow, Heartbeat and later on Rebecca's. I worked behind the bar in the Cedar for about a month till they discovered just how young I was.
What about the Ritz in Kings Heath? I saw Geno Washington there. I also went to the Odeon to see Little Stevie Wonder, Lee Dorsey, Arthur Conley etc.
Does anyone remember a temp dj at the Locarno called Warren (first name - can't remember his last name). He was there in about 1967.
I came second in a dance competition at Rebecca's - Tony Blackburn was the dj and judge. When Edwin Starr played Rebecca's he pulled me up onto the stage - I wasn't clapping like everyone else and he kind of showed me up a bit about it and then at the end, he got me up on the stage - loved it.
Les Ross used to dj downstairs at Rebecca's - he loved James Brown. Early evening when it was quiet - he'd play Cold Sweat and get out onto the dance-floor.
I've lived in London since I was eighteen but am eternally grateful to Brum and its fantastic clubs for giving me such terrific experiences and memories during my teenage years." Sue Price 01/01/2014
"Hi love the site started clubing in brum age 17 at Locarno in the Bali Hi never forget this old heart of mine was playing 1968. First real club Rebecas brilliant although i was turned away because my pregnant girlfriend was only 16 i was 18. Still had some great years at all Edy Fewttrels clubs. Although the best times were meeting in the bullring Sat afternoon the traveling up to Manchester to the Twisted wheel allnighter. Then travel back to the Chatue Impny Sunday afternoon Disco the back to Brum the Rainbow suite and to finnish off the heart beat at the ice rink. And todays kids think they are hard core. But Sloopys had a special place in my memories then Liberties and club 64. Yes over 20 years of clubing in brum there were many more. But i must say that the unbourn child turned away from Rebecas enjoyed many a night at Libertys with me and still goes out in town with my youngest son.So the family are still painting the town red." Dave Curtis 04/01/2014
"Hi everyone...what was the name of the club that was sited on the Bridge Link that connected the Bull Ring to New St Station...I saw The Faces there...I used to manage the SMC menswear shop in the middle of the Bridge Link but I cant remember the name of the club and its driving me mad!!!
All the best
Joe Kinney 12.01.2014" joe kinney 12/01/2014
"Senior Moments - can anyone remember a trad jazz club in an upstairs room of a pub at the back of the slaughterhouse in the late 60s/early 70s? It later moved to Sparkhill I think. Also a Tuesday night folk club venue somewhere near the law courts which doubled as "the Holy Ground" Irish folk club on Saturday nights?" Anne Miller 13/01/2014
"Does anyone remember a furniture shop on Broad Street called Busy Bee? Would be 60/70's opposite the church on Oozells Street" Joanne Bolt 15/01/2014
"Hi Anne, the only pub at the back of the slaughterhouse was in Cheapside, and if I remember right, it was the Market Inn, but there was no upstairs room there. The Greyhound in Rea Street had umpteen small rooms and did have a big room upstairs but I never remember a trad jazz band playing there.
It was mainly a rough cider house for the residents or Rowton House a couple of streets away.
There was a jazz club which met at the Civic Centre in Digbeth, but most of the jazz clubs were in the pubs up towards Snowhill.
Hi Dave Curtis, I remember the Chateau at Droitwich well, and we used to hang around the Silver Blades and also the ten pin bowling club downstairs.
We used to have a drink at the Raven in Droitwich, head to the Impny for something to eat, and then head back to Brum to finish off on a Saturday night.
I remember at the Chateau we used to double up on beer before midnight and put a few pints in the lift up to the residents floors, and go up and down for an extra 20 minutes before having to leave.
Had sad news this week, on old friend from the Opposite Lock days died, he was only 59, the baby of the gang.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 26/01/2014
"Hello. I live in northern Spain and grew up in Erdington - Holliday Road - I would like to know if anybody out there has photos and/or memories of the Holliday Rd, Hart Rd, Edwards Rd,Orchard Rd area from mid sixties to mid seventies and wouldnt mind sharing them...thanks" Michael 02/02/2014
"only just found this site so to reply to carol barrett bergonzi so sorry to hear about jimmy both he and harry were mates of mine for many years.i went to the midnight city along with jimmy,harry,gez kelly,dave austin,ozzy osbourne,dave carlos icould name more. we had some .when thegood times in that short time the midniht was open i think the speed had a bit to do with it when the sunlight hit your eyes in the morning you just had to find a cafe open and the party would contiue where ever you landed or carry on in the afternoon at the chateau. someone said the place got raided for drugs that was a policeman named clough i remember him and his crew chasing me jimmy and the rest of us round bingley hall what for i dont know.dont remember erskine as dj only fritz and that brother of chapman the singer with familey good blues band then. the shop up the corner was run by a bloke who managed a clothes shop next to mother care in the bullring think his name was mell.the bullring was a good hang out more kids in there on a saturday than any club if you wanted to meet anyone to make plans for saturday night that was the place.when the midnight shut down and reopened it was never the same and every one moved on we were old enough to use pubs then and new ones were opening all over town.hope you find your friends from the whiskey only ever went there a couple of times but knew a lot of the people who used it and knocked about with them later on when it was the liffy drank there saturday afternoon with jimmy,duffy,dave austin and a few more.ref bob grey the pedleys were brothers slaughtermen at birmingham meat market i worked with them when iwas a kid they worked the rum runner.ref bob king i think you are looking for the piccadilly club wich was the back of the piccadilly snooker club at the bottom of the arcade used the snooker club along with a lot of old faces for years did you know the old bill had it watched from across the road for years only found out a few monts ago i bet a lot of the lads would have been more carefull at 50 quid a game i remember bob the butcher they would only play him if he used one hand never seen him loose
Carl Lanchester" carl lanchester 05/02/2014
"crazy horse saloon birmingham ,was my introduction to the most relaxed feeling a human.can have,total yes" mel 08/02/2014
"Hi Carl, if you knew the Pedley brother at work then I probably ran into you at some stage as I was with the MAFF (Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Foods) through the 60s before getting into newspapers as a reporter.
The meat market was where all the faces of the day pitched up after the clubs kicked out for the early morning booze in the local pubs.
They were great days. Carl Wayne's sister was a pal of mine and Roy Wood was the 'serious' musician, who gigged with a few bands before The Move.
The folk who are now untouchable rock stars were then just local mates who played in groups, and got pissed with their pals.
I still have a photo here of Jet Harris peeing in an empty cider flagon in the dressing room at the club in the Kingfisher Centre in Redditch, with me peeing in the sink next to him.
I'm nearer to 70 than 60 now, but my memories of Brum are still fairly vivid.
Just imagine what the archives would have if we had had mobile phones with video back then??? It doesn't bear thinking about.
Cheers, Rab." Bob Grey 09/02/2014
"Hi Bob,i only worked at the market for about 8 months ozzy osbourne got me the job we were good mates.We both then worked at bywaters on the coventry road.One afternoon when we had finised work at the meat market ozzy; darky;myself were having a few drinks in the birmingham arms with the pedley brothers and big dennis smith when this stranger came in and he was a bit loud so mickey pedley said ozzy and carl open the doors;they were swing doors,he lined this bloke up and bang out he flew he said you can close them now.AS you know you didnt mess with the brothers.I went on to work at W Devis& sons as a slaughterman for 18 years did you ever work there bunny checkley did a stint there.I to wish we had phones then as the only record we have is memory like the time we set ozzy on fire in the midnight burnt his only suite. carl lanchester" carl lanchester 10/02/2014
"Bloody hell Carl, we must have met at some time. I was stationed at Bywaters for a few years, and I worked with Bernard (Bunny) Checkley when he joined the Ministry. I knew his old man well and his brother who joined the fire service.
My old man and my brother were meat inspectors and did all the wee bacon factories and slaugherhouses all over the Midlands.
I have just looked out three old pics I took at Bywaters with one of the guys sticking a pig, and I just can't remember his name. I don't think you can post pics in here but I bet you probably knew him.
Wee Bunny Checkley used to work with me at Bywaters and the market, he was a hoot.
The other guy I worked with at Bywaters was an old Scottish guy called Jock Hay, fat and bald he was then, worked the scales and checkweighed there till he died.
Hell I saw some cracking accidents at Bywaters, all the slaughtermen were nuts.
Let me know if there is some way I can send you copies of the pics as you will recognise the place straight away.
Cheers, Rab." Bob Grey 14/02/2014
"No old townie geezers still alive? Was there the day Eddy opened the Cedar club. The place for a whistle was either Pressburgers (private Jewish tailor) or Jackson The Tailors in New Street. Down the KD lunchtime,or lunchtime jazz at the Locarno. Did someone say John Colliers - do me a favour! Great memories.
BN" Brian Noble 16/02/2014
"Hi Bob i have got pics of myself,Tony Yeates,Lenny Passent,Terry Lovett taken at Bywaters in the slaughterhouse and outside i will have a word with my son and work out how to send the pics.Failing that we will have to meet up.I worked at Bywaters when Bunny was a check weighman with Arthuer Davis i left to work for John lloyd in Marsten Green with an old birmingham slaughterman named Alfie Hollis i then went back to Bywaters when John Donelly had taken over from Albert Upton stayed for 3 years then went to Devis,s.Dont remember ahy names you mentioned the only inspector i remember is Ralf he live in Mosley in a flat with a few other inspectors. I also did a stint at thompsons on Aston Cross.Carl Lanchester" carl lanchester 17/02/2014
"Hi Bob i have about 10 pics from Bywaters all taken in the slaughterhouse in the late 60s about 68,69,Terry Lovett,Toney Yeates,Passent brothers some are working pics.I also have pics from Devis,s in the 40s and the gang i worked with in the 70s.The manager was Joe Dawson the danish bloke Peter Neilson he worked at Devis.s till it closed still see him in Blackheath.Dont remember your mate Terry but i must have seen him at some time.My old mate Carl Chinn Has got all my pics but he has sent them to me via a drop box so if you can recieve pics this way i will get them sent to you i only go so far with computers product of the 60s so i will get set up and i will be in touch. Carl" carl lanchester 19/02/2014
"Hi Carl, those were the names I couldn't remember, Dawson and Neilson.
For regular readers of this forum, Carl and I have now worked out that we did work together nearly 50 years ago, and the pics I mentioned, one of them is Carl, taken in the late 60s.
Talk about turning back time?
Just a shame you can't all read the private e-mails we have recently exchanged, but it might lead to a series of historical arrests :o))
The internet is a powerful tool when used properly, on forums such as this.
The 60s were happy days, lots of work, money to be earned, and legendary rock stars were local piss artists the same as everyone else.
Been great hooking up again Carl after so many years.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 21/02/2014
"Hi Carl I do remember clough there was also another called hobson . the last time i saw them was with jimmys mom rest her sole myself and her were on the kitchen roof throwing a lot of blue things on to the street, and i dont think they were asprins! clough and hobson were knocking the front door. o happy days . love carol. !I miss jimmy so much!" carol barrett 23/02/2014
"Hi Carol you and Jimmy were together fof a long time just kids when you met so you must miss him a lot.Do you still keep in touch with Harry and Eugene i lost contact in the 80s .I still go into Kings Heath have a mate who lives there just found out that Martin Chandler and Moscow both have shops in Moseley Village so next time i visit i will look them up.Passed your message onto coco that you were looking for John Walsh never knew him but i was a lot younger than some of the whiskey faces Black H took me and my mate there we were only 14 only got in because of H only stayed for the first session.Those whiskey and midnight days went to fast but they were good.the last time i took any little blue pills was with Dave Austin we met Jimmy Harry and the rest of that crew in a cafe that was open all night back of the market we talked the backsides off them.If i get any info from Martin or Moscow i will let you know .Carl" carl lanchester 25/02/2014
"Hi Carl I am still very close to Harry and Eugene. harry lives in kings heath and Eugene lives in harborne, they were over to visit Jimmy when he was sick, he worked in one of our local hospitals, he was also the union,rep! rebelCRAEG till the end. our son Byron also a chip of the old block, a union guy! he is 41 now am 66 in april I started off as a beatnik then a mod now I am just an old broadI! so good to hear from you please give my best to coco,if you see him." carol barrett 26/02/2014
"Reply to Derrick Mason, I remember the Casino very well, the lunchtime sessions on saturday in 1958/59 cost 1/- from 12 till 2pm, then on monday nights from 8pm till 10 pm cost 2/- and great rock n roll sounds then walking home to spring hill, great memories." peter lambert 26/02/2014
"I wonder if anyone can help me. Some guy sent me an email after reading my 'Bob King Northern Soul' blog & asked me if I remembered a club in Brum called the Picadilly Club run in the late 60s early 70s. I would assume it was somewhere near Picadilly Arcade.I worked just around the corner at Rebeccas in the early 70s & I don't recall it & most of the DJs around town at that time would pop in & say hello from time to time. Anyway if anyone remembers let me know....Whilst on the subject of Brum, in the early 70s, does anyone remember a DJ pal of mine named Garry Clarke?....Can't remember the name of the pub but it was below street level not too far from Rebeccas.....he played there every Friday night & Saturday lunchtime. Oh & for a few people that got in touch I finally managed to track Pat Martin down." Bob King 02/03/2014
" What memories this site has awakened. I remember El Sombrero coffee house from the mid 1950's. Does any one remember the pub under the old fish market I think that it was called the Grand Turk but they used to sell real scrumpi and it was cheap and very cost effective. All those lovely Birmingham girls like Pat Stanley. Carole Ramsay, Betty Palmer and many others. I wonder where you all are now.
I now live in Canada but I have such fond memories of Birmingham in the 1950's and 1960's
Barry Phillips" Barry Phillips 03/03/2014
"After racking my brain all day ( which is very hard to do being a plumber )The pub below ground not far from Rebeccas was called the Parasol & I vaguely remembered that Gary Clarke (the DJ ) ended up getting offered a job presenting a TV show in Canada." Bob King 04/03/2014
"Hi Bob King have a look at Carl Lanchester 5/02/14 bottom of the page its the only Picadilly Club i knew in town.Hope it helps Carl." carl lanchester 05/03/2014
"Does anyone remember the cafe in Carrs Lane in the town centre which specialised in apple strudel and fancy coffee, just close to the number 48 inner circle ring route bus stop?
There was a single staircase up to the cafe from the street, and the only way down without fighting your way was to shout you were going to honk, and everyone got out of the way.
That was one of the few alcohol free venues used by students and drunks trying to sober up before the night service bus started out to the sticks.
I think the number 48 and the 50 went from there, the 50 was the quickest as it went straight up Moseley Road and Alcester Road South to the Maypole, and the 48 did the inner circle tour.
I used to be a barman in the Maypole pub, it was some boozer. I think the boss then was Eddie Yates, and his son Malcolm was killed in a car crash on the Moseley Road.
I won't say anything about the barmaids back then as they may still be alive and kicking octogenarians, but as an 18 year old, they taught me all the things I didn't learn at school!!!
I remember crashing the car on the way home one night and going through the fence into the Rubery Hospital grounds.
When I went to get it on the Sunday morning,
half the inmates were out enjoying the view.
Fortunately the cops weren't involved and I didn't get a bill for the damage to the fence from the Corporation.
Someone stopped and gave us a lift home close to the traffic lights at Howard Road in Kings Heath.
Dunno if the Caledonian Corks Club is still going strong, but that was where we held our wedding reception in 1968.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab" Bob Grey 08/03/2014
"hi i grew up in payton rd handsworth 1n the 60s.
and my sisters and i used to buy all our 45s from a record shop called libbys on soho rd.
does anyone remember the name of a small record shop that only sold 45s.
it was on a row of shops oppersite the corner of grove labe closed 1n late 65 early 66.
also i rember the ceadar club back in late 1970s.
when it was empty and dereclict before it was the ceadar club.
it had posh large door handles with the word jaceys on them.
can anyone shed any light into wot this place was as i would like to know.
also does anyone know wot the place was called in was in rookery rd handsworth where many top 50s and 60s stars appeard at think it was a cinema or club cant be sure
btw bob grey if its the corks club on bearwood rd bearwood ur on about yes its still going cause they hold jazz nites there on thursday evenings." paul reynolds 15/03/2014
"Reply to Peter Lambert's comments re: lunchtime Bop at the Casino. I was working in the City Surveyors at Baskerville House opposite The Hall of Memory, from 1957 to 1959. I seemed to remember paying sixpence for one hour, Wedneday lunchtime. It's nice to hear from someone that still remembers it! Are you still dancing? I'm still at it at 74 - Swing Jive and Balboa." Derrick Mason 21/03/2014
"to bob king,the Piccadilly club was situated in Piccadilly arcade,if you entered from new street entrance it was about three quarters of the way down on your right,if my memory serves me you opened the door to steps down.i think it was a kind of gentlemens club.hope this helps,regards steve." steve hudson 26/04/2014
"My first memory of the 60s was March 1960 Birmingham Hippodrome to see Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent it was great. I worked at Cadburys at the time and every lunchtime in the week we all used to go to Cadbury Bop Hall to Rock'n'Roll. On Saturdays we all used meet up lunchtime and go to either The West End Ballroom or The Lacarno Ballroom with a visit to Murdocks Record Shop just over the road from the Lacarno to listen to the latest records via headphones in small sound booths. Gerry Levens and the Avengers was the band at the West End... Great band. Anyway after rocking at these dance halls we would all rush home to see The O'Boy Show on the telly (in black and white) at 6.30pm...a brilliant TV Rock'n'Roll show. I lived in Bournville at the time and of a Saturday night would go with my mate Paul Close to The Taboo in Stirchley to watch local bands like The Rocking Berries and at the same time I joined a group called The Deltas playing piano/organ that included another great mate called Pat Wayne.. We bought our band suits at Chetwyns (some really cool gear at the time) and played local gigs Taboo, The Ritz, The Garry Owen Club, Handsworth Plaza (as an earlier writer stated all these venues were owned by an Irish family call the Regans.... each band would play a 45/60 minute set and then move to next venue and finish up where they started). I then joined a group called Keith Powell and the Valets and remember very well doing the Eddie Feltwell clubs including The Ceder Club and seeing Christine Keeler and Mandy Rice Davies along Johnny Prescott etc and playing along various other Brummie groups including Carl Wayne and The Vikings, Mike Sheridan and The Nightriders, Raymond Froggatt, The Modernaires etc. We all used to play The Olde Moat House owned by the Banana King Rob Pryke and his lovely wife.... this is where a number of Brummie groups were signed up by EMI including ourselves. I later worked at (dare I say it) The Revue Bar (yes... backing the strippers) and The Monte Carlo Club both in Handsworth. Gambling was big at the time... I could never understand how the club owners always knew when they were going to be raided.... funny that? We used to play The Mackadown, The Belfry, for guys named Mike Carroll, John Singer, Phil Myatt, Bob Smith and ofcourse the Fewtrell family. I seem to remember Stuart Gargan, please correct me if I am wrong but I think his dad was our local butcher's (Gargans) in Bournville? The Elbow Room owned by Albert Chapman ( ex manager at Rum Runner and later also tour manager of Black Sabbath.. now that was a great gig The Rum Runner, a club owned by the Berrow family of were later to manage Duran Duran) and The Elbow Room was another townies venue next door to the Aston Hippodrome... you would meet most of the names here after their other local gigs. Another meeting place for all the groups and late night revellers was Alex's Pies.... All the muzo's met up at Alex's great hot pies and coffee etc: Yes the 60's were (to and for me) really happy days.... appearing with The Rolling Stones at Thimblemill Baths, Smethwick one night or local Brummie guys in various groups who later would become major Artistes... Jeff Lynn, Roy Wood, Ozzy Osbourne, Bev Beven, Denny Layne etc etc it was all happening and I am so proud and privileged to be around at that time and part of it all.... There is so many tales to tell but thanks for reading this..... Cheers Mal Ford" Mal Ford 09/05/2014
"Hi Mal, what a blast from the past , I remember seeing you and your showband many times in the 80s you were the best around,and had the audience gripped I wonder what you are doing now?" barb 11/05/2014
"hi just found this site I use to work in garry owen late 60s in its resterant t bone steaks was the main dish. Dose anyone remember double zero club my name was lin Anderson then and my best mate was pearl adams my boyfriend was Michel taylor he was killed on his friends bike I remember going with him on the dragon rally had some realy good times any one who remembers please" linda wolfendale 11/05/2014
"Further out of town, in the late sixties I worked at the Westmead Country Club, for former greengrocer, Jim Slater. His son, Rob, myself and others went to the usual city clubs with Rob driving Jim's four-litre Vanden Plas R but further out, towards the Lickeys, was the Chalet d'Or, a wooden built nightclub where we saw, and he was dreadful, Heinz, a former member of the Tornadoes, of Telstar fame.Another member of that loose social group, playing snooker at the Westmead often, was Johnnie or was it Billy Prescott, a local, briefly famous boxer.
NIGEL CHAMBERS." nigel chambers 15/05/2014
"I remember the all nighters at the Birmingham town hall started about 11pm and went through to til 7am Saturday morning. Great bands especially Spencer Davis" John Shephard 22/05/2014
"Wonderful site, wonderful memories. Re Anne Millar's post 13/01/14, we used to alternate between the Holy Ground and Jug O'Punch at Digbeth Civic Hall, but can't remember the pub name for the Ground. I do remember the Greyhound, best cider and cheese and onion cobs in Brum! I was one of the croupiers at the opening of the casino at the Dolce Vita, and remember many happy nights going for a curry at the TajMahal opposite after work. Saw the Beatles live at the Town Hall when they were a supporting act for Roy Orbison. I live in Cornwall now, and was so sad the last time I visited Birmiingham, there's nothing left of what I remember." Vanessa Hughes 15/06/2014
"i often wonder what happened to john fewtrell.i see his name mentioned above .he was the manager for the butchers H.E.HAYNES for a while and i was his 2 I c untill he decided to work for his brother eddie fewtrell at The Club Cedar.i became manager of the butcher shop and we supplied the cedar club with meat for a while." graham ludlow 24/06/2014
"my late husband always talked of the great times he had as a musician trumpet player in Birmingham in the fifties and sixties. He played alot of gigs in the irish club. Does anyone remember him? I would love to hear from you as Philip was very ill in the last years of his life and loved to remember the good old days11" Marie Therese Russell 24/06/2014
"Hi to Vanessa. My wife was at the Orbison/Beatles gig. She won a music magazine competition, and got free tickets and a back stage pass to meet Roy Orbison. She also got to meet the Beatles, very exciting for a 15 year old. Janet is also sad when we return to Brum as everything has changed beyond recognition. She is sometimes in touch with old schppl friends from Swanshurt Grammar School through Friends Reunited.
Cheers, Rab." Wee Rab 01/07/2014
"Carol Barrett - Hi Carol, I have only just found this site. So many memories! Hope you remember me, Dawn Hughes (was Cupples,) Rory's ex wife. So very sorry to hear about Jimmy. The last time I saw him was at Tommy Murphy's funeral.
Do you remember we used to meet up at each other's houses on a Monday when Byron, Christian and Dylan were nippers? Can't believe where the years have gone. I remember when you left for Canada and wondered if you would settle there but it must be 35 years since we last met! Be great to hear from you. Dawn Hughes (was Cupples)." Dawn Hughes (was Cupples) 02/07/2014
"Hi Dawn just saw your post so good to hear from you cant belive how long its been ,yes i am still here in vancouver. jimmy died 2 years ago. i miss him so much he never changed still crazy until the end , he never ever forgot home we used to laugh so much about all the stuff he got UP TO . BYRON IS 41NOW AND A CHIP OFF THE OLD BLOCK. i AM COMING HOME NEXT SPRING , SO I HOPE WE CAN GET TOGETHER, KEEP IN TOUCH , LOVE CAROL." carol barrett 11/07/2014
"back in the 60s does anyone recall ken ingrams
jazz band at the crown in hill street or jazz at the salutation pub & a character their called stu ! or rob prykes (a well known man in b,ham market)club in bradford street called the old moat house ?" john martin 26/07/2014
"Hi,back in the 60s. Does anyone recall ken ingrams jazz band at the Crown in Hill street
or jazz in a room over the Salutation pub near
Snow hill I think & rob prykes Moat House club
at the top end of Bradford street. Many a
happy evening spent at all three !
John Martin. ( now living in Malta )" john martin 30/07/2014
"I was about 15 when I went to the Midnight City in Digbeth , best year of my life , I sneaked out every Saturday night to go dancing either with my mate if not on my own but always got someone to dance with. I remember seeing The who with Keith moon ,the cream , Chris Farlow , Robert plant before his Led zeppelin time and lots more ..... Used to get kicked out around 8 am then head straight upto Lyons cafe before going home oh happy days !!!!" Gwen 17/08/2014
"RE John Martin. Hi John, I remember the Kenny Ingram jazz band at the Crown. I also remember many early rock bands starting their careers there. I used to go to lots of the Jazz Clubs and trad-band pubs throughout the 60's.
I know the name Rob Prykes but can't put a face to him right now, but maybe Carl Lanchester will remember him. Check back a few posts between myself and Carl, we were at the meat market in Bradford Street from about 1963 onwards. My old man and my late brother were meat inspectors there, I was with the MAFF.
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Wee Rab 18/08/2014
"To David Rose
You won't remember me I'm sure, your long lost cousin Frances, Sidney's daughter. If you see this at some time, drop me a line." Frances Ffox nee Rosenberg 22/08/2014
"message for Mal Ford yes Stuart Gargans dad was Jasck he had the butchers in bournville he used to have a proud boast the he owned the only shop in bourville that Cadburys didn't own , he also had other shops in the city, when he gave up the butchery he managed the red lion on the portway for Stuart. demolished in the 1980s . Stuart Gargan now has the crabb mill pub on the hagley road at old Swinford. his son Ashley has the duck pub in Redditch" joe fitzpatrick 07/09/2014
"Wow this site is great. I remember Rainbow Suite, my boyfriend Johhny Morris was one of the DJ's there. Le metro, Penthouse, Top Rank, Plaza, La Dolce Vita, Mayfair Suite, Gaylord, Royal Oak Walsall,
Black Swan Northfield, Silver Blades (worked there in 1968 the manager Nic who's on this site sacked me, cos I gave him a free milkshake, bit crafty as he asked for a free drink).
Alhambra pub, Roller Rink Springhill, Tower Ballroom, yard of Ale, Mulberry Bush, Brown Derby, Rebeccas, Barbarellas, Edwards, Cedar, BRS club, Carlton, Lacarno
ATV studios, saw Stones, Lulu, Dave Berry, Georgei Fame, Heinz, Cilla, Dave Clarke 5, Casuals, Walker Brothers, PJ Proby, Gerry Marsden, Rocking Berries, Searchers, Kinks, loads more I can't recall at present.
Oh what happy days I went out every single night and yes Brum was a very safe place Had many a lift home from the Caravan and never had a problem always treated respectfully.
Saturday shopping was great you could guarantee meeting up with someone you knew from the club scene in Lyons Coffe House or Kardhoma coffee bar.
I remember having my photo taken in the Top Rank by promoters of Clearasil and was then selected for one of the heats didn't get anywhere though (no surprise as I had developed a huge spot on my chin the bight before) I remember tall Brenda was also an entrant with me.
I agree with all the comments on here we were light years ahead of London with the lively club scene, glad I was part of it!!!!!!!" Kath Mallon 07/09/2014
"In May 1965, my band, the Pieces of Mind, played the first of 2 or 3 gigs at the West End Ballroom in Birmingham. The West End was a really old-fashioned ballroom, which was very active in the 1920s and, from old photographs; it looked like not much had changed by the time we played there.
Birmingham was just over 100 miles from Newport and, whilst we did have bits of the M50 and M5 motorways open, the roads weren't as good as they are today. I remember the incident that Glyn refers to later was the first time we played the West End, when we only had Chippy's small van, I believe a Commer Cob, and Glyn's car to take us. I was in the van with Chippy and our equipment and the rest were probably in Glyn's car.
On one of the motorways, I remember a van that had 'The Fortunes' written on the side passed us, with a couple of band members waving and laughing at us. I think that annoyed Chippy as he put his foot down and sped past their vehicle.
A few miles later, we heard a banging noise coming from the engine and shortly after the van lost all power and coasted to a stop on the hard shoulder. When Chippy opened the bonnet, the engine looked in a sad condition. There appeared to be a piston or big end, whatever they are called, sticking out that shouldn't have been. We were stuck quite a few miles from the venue with all the band equipment.
There were no mobile phones back then, so we had to walk to the nearest telephone on the hard shoulder and found the number of a firm who would tow us to the West End Ballroom where we met up with the others, who were getting worried by then. We off-loaded the equipment and Chippy arranged for the van to be taken to a garage.
By the time we went on the stage, which was only a foot or so off the dance floor, I was in quite a state, preferring not to be too rushed and needed things to go right, whenever I went on stage. The Disk Jockey had been playing pop records, from people like Sandy Shaw, just before we went on and when we opened up with the first number, which was Smokestack Lightning, the large audience all appeared to move rather quickly towards us; the sprung dance floor exaggerating their movements. For a moment I thought they didn't like us and wanted to tear us apart. However, it became obvious that they did like us a lot; it was just the first time that most of them had seen a group like us.
There was a similar reaction when we played I Wish You Would, which was a Billy Boy Arnold song, which was recorded by the Yardbirds. There is always something hypnotic about playing those two songs that have strong riffs and predominantly featuring a single chord. With a brilliant front man in Adrian and the raw energy of the rest of the band, we soon had the audience in the palm of our hands. It was a great night, with what appeared to be several hundred people in the audience, most of which were dancing.
At the end of the night, we had the issue of how we were going to transport all our band equipment back to Newport. As the Ballroom wanted to close their doors, we had to take all our equipment outside and stack it near the front doors. It was lucky it wasn't raining as we didn't have covers for the amplifiers and there was a lot of loose stuff, such as microphone stands and power extension leads. It looked as if we had been evicted from the place. I think I stayed behind to look after the stuff, whilst the others looked for someone to take the equipment home and us.
They eventually persuaded a chap driving a black taxi, to transport most of the equipment and 2 or 3 of us back to Newport, for what I thought was Â£25. Glyn remembers it as Â£50, but whichever it was; it was a small fortune and completely wiped out our fee for the gig. I remember being in the back seat with drums, cymbals and an amp all around me; the front passenger seat had the guitars, being held by someone, either Andy or Percy and the rest of the stuff in the boot. I think Glyn managed to get some of the equipment in his car, with the rest of the band. It was a long journey and I eventually got home about 7 a.m. with just enough time to have a cup of tea and get ready for work.
We have a pic taken from I think the balcony of us playing. It can be seen at:
http://www.thepiecesofmind.com/blog/blog/playing-the-west-end-ballroom-in-birmingham" Ducksy 29/09/2014
"I remember in the late 40s and 50s going to kings hall market by lewises and living in mary stree balsall heath and went to upper highgate school got married at st paul's church moseley road and worked at the alhambra cinema i loved that job because i got to see the films like gone with the wind .birmingham will never be the same as them day's all the building i have mentioned have sadley gone there is a lot mor i remember but i would be here all day" elizabeth hawkes 07/10/2014
I was a chef at Rackhams 1969-1973.
Have spent an hour looking through great memories and stories but didn't see any mention of the Parisienne pub just down the alley from Rackhams.
Also I played organ in a band called Street Corner at a night club called the Incognito just round from the Hippodrome. Believe Steve Gibbons girlfriend was the hat check girl there.
Also The Railway where I first saw Steve Gibbons band, brilliant venue for live prog rock bands." Paul Millard 14/10/2014
"The pub at the top of Hill Street was called the Golden Eagle, me and my friend Chris and her boyfriend ( now husband) Terry used to go there in the 70's to watch a band called Possessed, Terry was mates with the band members. Possessed also played the Railway in Birmingham, the Gough Arms in West Brom and the Coach & Horses in Hateley Heath . Tragically, the band were involved in a terrible accident on the motorway on the way back home from a gig in the North and ( if I remember rightly) there were only two survivors." Yvonne Cleaver 27/10/2014
"I remember the la fiesta coffee bar in town, summer row, a gang of us used to hang out there and my boyfriend at the time billy taylor used to work there. I remember ozzy and his girlfriend hazel, capone, jimmy fenton and his girlfriend janet, and owen. The juke box was usually playing a shadows number." patricia thomas 27/10/2014
"I have tried to message before and it didn't seem to work so I hope I am not duplicating my message.
I have fond memories of the La Fiesta Coffee Bar in Summer Row. Our 'gang' consisted of Ozzy and Hazel, Jimmy Fenton and Janet; Owen; Capone, and my boyfriend at the time Billy Taylor who used to also work there.
There always seemed to be a particular tune playing on the juke box, it was the Shadows and I think the title was Telstar. We all congregated there until it was demolished to widen the road.
Pat Thomas 28/10/2014" patricia thomas 28/10/2014
"loccano. November 1982. The night we got baned from the disco,because we were to old,got invited back on a Friday,and had the dance floor to ourselves. Made head lines in the Sun newspaper,and we had our"15 minutes of fame" on the. TV, had some good times tho.........." Alf. and Mary. Taylor 06/11/2014
"This is a great site, I haven't had time to read all the input but just had to mention Mothers in Erdington. I had some great nights there, all the top bands played there Pink Floyd even did some recording there. I saw the Who, Ten Years After, Buffie st Marie, Pentangle, to name but a few. John Peel used to DJ there, helped by a great guy called Erskine T.. Great memories.." Phil Dipple 07/11/2014
"I was along with my friends Elaine and Pat, Mods in the sixties. We used to go to the West End, Whiskey go go all nighter and the Carlton club in Erdington. We always used to go into the Stage Door coffee shop. I knew John Walsh, Dave Walsh, Alan Paddle, and their other friend Molynoux. I think I remember Carol too and another girl named Diane and a friend called Sandy who was going out with a chap called Declan. I was going out with a chap called Eddie and his friend was called Steve Spencer. Eddie was sometimes mistaken for Chimpy Harris. Another friend was Rose Brown who was going out with a chap named Micky Carney. We also used to go to a little cafe near Navigation Street and next door to the Piccadily snooker club. We was great friends with a chap called Joe who was a boxer, he was big built and always wore a Crombie overcoat with a white cravat. They was great days. Elaine and I never went out without our false eyelashes on. There was also a Robert Pickering and a big chap called Jonah, John Savage who was called Savo. I also knew Black H and Spencer just to have a dance with when in the West End. There used to be a black chap called Vic that used to go round selling some kind of pot in the Whisky. I saw the Small Faces perform there. Elaine and I would come out of the all nighter and go to the railway buffet for breakfast." Kathy T 13/11/2014
"Hello does anyone remember harry leslie cox he used to work at the Birmingham meat market, smith field. approx. 1950. then he had a cafÃ© in hockley the tudor cafÃ©. He had a house in trinty road and next to the house was a club.where he used to sing, anyone know any idea what the club was called." penny smith 20/11/2014
"Penny. The Club in Trinity Road was probably The Variety Artists Club and was a normal Social Club but also a place where many amateur and proffesional acts got together socially. My grandfather Claude Bennett was Secretary for 25 years. He was a printer by trade but also a booking agent for acts. He printed a fortnightly magazine, The Club Herald which contained news from the clubs and advertised act. As a child I met many of his friends such as the brilliant Norman Evans. But while I'm on, diversifying, does any one out there have a contact number for Carol Teresa White who lived in Denewood Avenue, Handsworth Wood. She married and moved to Australia in the 80s. We would love to hear from her." Bob Griffin 21/11/2014
"Hi does anyone remember Irene from The Locarno, 1968/1969? I'm the baby daughter she had and looking for the man she wrote to for a while. I know he existed but no details, name etc. Thanks" Linda 06/12/2014
"message for paul millard, saw your post and that you worked at rackams as a chef, do you remember my dad bernard Bergonzi he was also a chef at rackams. he passed away in 1970. carol vancouver canada." carol barrett 15/12/2014
"hi ex military guy here,used to hang out in brum as a teen in the late 60s,i knew a loely girl called ,jeez d memory is gone also i knew a guy called shane shaw,he was a deserter from the canadian navy,we used to hang out in the ole bullring and peters cafe in sparkbrook,my mate at the time was jimmy connors ,ah,the girls name was susan bytheway,mite have been from kingsnorton not sure,gee my lost youth in london and brummy,anyways i became a soldier for 21 years retiring in 90,but ill never forget brum,anyone know how i can trace susan give me a holler ,ty,jim" james gavin 08/01/2015
"Would any one have any photos of Brunos hairdressing shop on the Queensway birmingham 1970 s" Milly jones 09/01/2015
"Oh only just found this site it really brings back memories, me and my friend Angela McHard used to go dancing every Friday night at the Lacarno, and when I was 18 I was so excited to join the Tudar club. Then on to the Cedar club, or the Opposite Lock or the Elbow Room. What great nights we had. We were called Angie who was blonde and Marg I had long black hair, although now a blonde." Margarita Colttrell 15/01/2015
"Remember well most of the clubs and pubs mentioned above having drunk and danced in Top Rank,Rainbow Suite, Rebecca's, Barbarella's, Polyanna's, La Dolce then across the road to the Locarno, Tower Ballroom, Swan Yardley,
Rum Runner,Opp Lock,Parisienne, Yates Wine Lodge on Corporation Street, The Cabin, Mulberry and the Tavern 1 day before they bombed 'em, The Windsor, The Barrel Organ....et al!" Steve Inman 16/01/2015
"Carol Barrett..... Amazing reading this
I Knew Jimmy and his brothers, Chimpy and Leo, Probably a lot more as well....Coco....
They used to know me as Tommy Canice...It wasn't my name, Canice was my brother, name just kinda got stuck 'n I gave up trying to correct it!
I was talking to Paddy Duffy last Tuesday out side Burke's on corner of Ladypool/Stratford Road. he lives out at the Maypole but comes to Burkes once a week to get his sausages.
He's one person who has not changed still wears a Crombie, he looks and rabbits exactly like he did in the 70's....well a bit older true...but...
Anyway it's great to see comments from or about people who I've known totally unexpected...Blinding!" Tommy Canice 28/01/2015
"We lived in small Heath in the 60's. My dad's name was John Lennon. No longer with us since 92. I think I remember him talking about a cafe on the Cov Road called chowkies. I think he was a jack the lad who may have had some ladies of the night working for him, and had been in & out of prison. Tried to google the cafe but no joy." John lennon 31/01/2015
"Haven't checked this site out for a while but nice to see a piece by Mal Ford which jogged my memory a little.Stuart Gargon i worked for, Fewtrells i worked for,Singer & Myatt ring a bell but he mentioned Albert Chapman.......i almost forgot about him. I did a number of gigs for Albert in the early 80s & found him an ok sort of bloke. Most club gaffers & promotors i found cold but i wish i'd done a bit more with Albert.....you could actually hold a conversation with the guy......nice memories." Bob King 01/02/2015
"Following on from my last post was it Singer & Myatt who ran Sloopys....it seems to ring a bell. Didn't that crew also run the Bulls Head disco & Mothers" Bob king 04/02/2015
"hi have not visited site for a while it brings back such happy memories I was just thinking about tow rope cafÃ© does any one remember ronny Williams he also worked on door at the monte carlo clubsoho hill iws great mates with his brother billy just wondered if they are still around bham night life really was the best" peter bell 05/02/2015
"What a great site!! I don't know if I feel old or young after reading all the comments...lol...
I use to work at Truform shoe shop in New St in '62, and one Saturday morning I was sent on an errand to pick up some shoes from the Bull St branch, as I was walking a black limo passed me with these lads waving and hollering, it wasn't till later I realised it was the Beatles on what was probably their first gig in Brum, they were playing at the Odeon. ( If I only knew at the time )but I was only 15/16 at the time. As I grew older I too frequented all the clubs mentioned in the comments above, my fave being the Rum Runner ( anyone remember the D'Fenders ) I often wonder what happened to them, Max in particular, I think he got remarried to a girl called Olwen, but lost contact with them when I left the area....I remember seeing the Everlys there and swooned when one of them brushed passed me trying to get to the dressing room...lol....it was packed.
My friends and I would often go to the Cedar too and again I remember seeing Tom Jones perform as he had just released It's not unusual, oh the memories and the smell of Estee Lauders Youth Dew still plays havoc with my nose.
Someone mentioned the Garry Owen club in their comments, my sister use to work there for Brendan and is still in regular contact with him, and my husband use to cook the steaks there, can't get a good steak bap nowadays :)...anyway you've all given me some great memories and it's lovely to look back...thanks :)" Pam Polo nee Morgan 08/02/2015
"does any one remember the house that jack built on newtown row ,l worked there when l left school in 1965 , mr hooper was the manger then , l worked on glassware crockery hardware and toys and on crockery l worked with stevie she was a character she was great , it always reminds me of are you being served on tv good memories ." Theresa Reynolds nee bartog 08/02/2015
"Can any one remember the Old Kings Hall Market in Corporation Street , was a dance hall next door was it the Casino, you could go to lunch time dancing?" Annie 20/02/2015
"Does anyone remember the 'Coral Reef' night club on the Coventry Road near Yardley. I don't think it was open for very long..." Anne Marshall 26/02/2015
"I was a regular at most of the Birmingham clubs in the sixties but my favourite was the Sin Bin at Rebecca's. Can anyone remember a cafÃ© on Broad Street called the Towrope? It was open all night and all the blockheads would end up there in the early hours. Please tell me I'm not imagining it because I can find on record of it ever existing........... Alan (living in Banbury in those days)" Alan Cooper 02/03/2015
"Oh, just seen the comment from Peter Bell. I wasn't dreaming! The Towrope really did exist. In the early hours it was full of wide-eyed kids in mohair suits chewing gum for all they were worth. Well, you could go home could you? Alan" Alan Cooper 02/03/2015
"tommy canice this is carol Barrett Bergonzi. jimmy Barretts wife, he passed away a couple of years ago, if you see paddy Duffy again .please tell him i was asking about him . jimmy and i were really good friends with him, we lost track of him when we left for vancouver, best wishes carol." carol barrett 05/03/2015
"Someone asked about a dj called Doc--this was Doc Holliday,he owned Tracks and Grooves,coton lane erdington,a great record shop--this site is great." leigh smart 22/03/2015
"Hi - I have really got carried away reading all these fantastic memories. I hope I am not misusing this site but I worked as a barmaid in The Parisienne in the 70's(me and my friend came from little old Walsall to work in the big city 3 evenings a week!) My friend met her future husband there and I want to do her a special poem for their 40th wedding anniversary. Only problem is my memory is shocking. Cant remember DJ's name (he had auburn hair)-also manager and wifes name. Could anyone help please?" Sue McDonnell 30/03/2015
"King Kong and where He is now (view photogallery)
http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/new-king-kong-rises-birmingham-8997930" S O'Neill 14/06/2015
"still trying to find john walsh and wendy they had a daughter justine. love to hear from you both!. spent lots of time in the stage door cafe. late 60s" carol barrett 25/06/2015
"Anyone remember the Castaway Club, Bradford Street. Great place in the sixties. Saw PJ Proby there" Gaynor O 21/07/2015
"Hi, a message for Michael Rose. I remember you so well, I was the young girl who came into Cecil Gee's and bought a rugby shirt to waer as a mini. The older man who was Manager I think, was really lovely" Jacqueline L Miller 01/08/2015
"Have many happy memories of a misspent youth working as a glass collector at the Carlton Club on Erdington High St above mens wear store (John Clolliers?) opposite the Church. Happy days" Dave Ball 01/08/2015
"Great read. Does anyone remember Gene Vincent at the Plaza. 60's I believe. Great times at the plaza!!!!" Jacki Finneran 02/08/2015
"hi remember the plaza at handsworth and seeing yhe beatles I think 61/62 we had great nights late bus home think it was the no 8 iremember going to buy stiff collars to complete my mod.attire so many happy memories where has the time gone would love to hear from anyone who used to go to the plaza" peter bell 04/09/2015
"Hi I remember the Plaza, wasn't it in Rookery Road, Handsworth. We can from Perry Barr so it was a walk home, even if there was a bus probably no cash left to use it. I went to the Beatle gig. There was another club I can't remember the name but they had the same act on as the Plaza on the same night. So we would rush out to catch the act at the club. The night of the Beatles we rush out and went flying over these set of drums sitting on the pavement. Ringo was not pleased." Maurice Grinsell 17/09/2015
"does anyone remember ici kynock wks at witton I was a photographer there met my first love there Margaret Jackson we even got engaged used to meet at tha plaza Friday nights had so many many happy memories used to love sloopys john taylor phil myatt gary sermon allex mothers owned it I think loved the Windsor pub used to have team meetings there windser athletic sorry to bore you all just writing about those tines brings so much happiness" peter bell 18/10/2015
"1966 the year of my Vespa with chrome side panels and lots rear view mirrors wherever they would fit, Levi's and Fur lined Parka's. Surfside stop was the first place to visit then park up at the fountain next to the town hall. The rockers on their motorbikes used to ride past us tauntingly until we chased them back to Alex's, (their domain) then we did the same on our scooters, ride past Alex's taunt the rockers, then get chased back to the fountain. One cafe I haven't heard mentioned was the Bohemian in Hurst street, which always seemed to be playing the Beach Boys on the jukebox. Never went to clubs, (too young) but Midnight City was always being talked about in our Mod gang. Only one name I can remember, Robert Vodden, good mate. Terry" Terry Robinson 24/10/2015
"Haha Terry, I could have been one of the rockers who tossed the mod's scooters into the fountain. I used to go up there on a Tiger Cub with some of the other guys, and we used to taunt the Parka Pigs. Had some wonderful rumbles with the new poncy mods. I can't remember being chased by the scooter mods, they couldn't have kept up with us hahaha. Mild violence, but still happy days.
Cheers, Rab." Bob Grey 25/10/2015
"Well what a walk down memory lane, I worked at the Dolce Vita B'ham in the early 70's(Dancer)It was a fantastic time , I also went to the Cedar after work Barbarellas & other clubs met some great people,lost contact with alot of them like "The Real Thing" -Charlie Harrison (judas jump)or at that time he was with 'Paradox' Chris (DJ) at the Queens Head. Margaret from the Dolce,many others.
My school was Harorne Hill." Lesley Sullivan 04/11/2015
"He he, bit of a Grey area there Bob! I can never remember a scooter ending up in the fountain by a Tosser!!! anyway, the scooter would have slipped through your hands which were always covered in grease from the oil leaky British bikes you rode. The scooters would never have kept up with you down the Tamworth Straights, but around the City centre, twisty cobbles, they could easily out accelerate most bikes up to second gear. Keep the memories coming. Toot toot." Terry Robinson 05/11/2015
"Glad to see you didn't lose your sense of humour over the years Terry, despite walking home in a soaking wet parka every other weekend hehehe.
You have to remember, the rockers were there first, so they had the bragging rights.
I really do remember a few scooters ending up in the fountain, it was so easy to pick them up because of the million mirrors bolted to every panel.
No matter, they were great times, and looking back and comparing them to the rubbish people suffer now, makes us all the lucky people to have been there at the time.
We lived through the most wonderful music revolution of the century, and even looking at You Tube, there were a few mod bands who were nearly good.
Status Quo were nearly mods, but discovered demim :o)) and they are still going.
Would love to meet you some time Terry and swap lies hehehe.
Cheers, Rab." Bob Grey 10/11/2015
"Hi! can anyone remember a singer at the Tower Ballroom 50's and 60's her name was Mavis she sometimes changed her name. She also sang on 6 5 special on t.v.
Janet Bayliss" janet Bayliss nee Dixon 20/11/2015
"can anyone help me please I am trying to trace the steps of a cousin who sang at the tower ballroom birmingham in 50's her ral name was mavis brown but she went under different names. She appeared on six five special in the late fifties and married a musician a trombonist I think. Many thanks Janet Bayliss" janet Bayliss nee Dixon 21/11/2015
"In response to Peter Bell (18/10/2015) regarding Margaret Jackson. Unfortunatley, Margaret passed away 24 years ago. I am Margarets cousin, both living in Jardine Road, Witton, at the time. I can remember drinking with you and Margaret at the Tennis Courts, and you and Margaret getting me drunk and dumping me on my parents doorstep. Yes, they were great times at the Plaza where myself, Margaret and Diane Hewlitt (do you remember Diane)had many happy evenings." Janet Grant (Adey) 01/12/2015
"Most of my formative years took place in the 70's in Birmingham (age 13 to 20). I worked part time at SMC clothing (Bridge Link) whilst at school (see comment 12/01/2014 from Joe Kinney - manager). I remember Joe coming to work in his Parka coat and playing his music (Led Zeppelin etc) over the sound system in the shop. Joe - you were a great boss.
My twin brother worked in the other branch of SMC on the way out to the market. His boss was called Carl, but I don't recall his surname. SMC were the 'River Island/Topman' of the 70's, it was where any decent fashion concious bloke went for good fashion.
I lived in Cleveland Tower 1972 to 1976 before the Birmingham city centre became somewhere to actually live. The city centre was my neighbourhood and has mainly good memories of frequenting the local pubs (can't remember them all, but many are named here). I used to go for a drink at the Sentinels - the pub at the bottom of the tower blocks. After a nights entertainment, buying battered burger from the local chip shop.
They were great days and great times, which I realise cannot be brought back and probably viewed with rose tinted spectacle. A special place and a special time." Chris Rowe 05/12/2015
"What was the name of the coffee house on Bristol Street, open during the 6o's, near to the Cinephone cinema and Bristol Street Motors?
Quite stylish I remember but had a dodgy reputation for all sorts of things!" Terry Guest 10/12/2015
"Wow happy days yes, started work at BSA Armoury Road in 1965 came from Coventry every day by taxi (I was a Carbodies apprentice then) and I made so many pals that I almost never went out in Cov. Met my first girl friend Janet Pickering who was a telephonist at Nat West in central Brum at a night club out near Brownhills where the Strawbs group usually played, then I was always on scooters nipping around Nechells, Alum Rock and Aston spent Fridays in a youth disco in a celler in Aston came from Cov Friday night and stayed till Mondays to go to Garretts Green College,then later lots of time was spent in the German beer keller up the main railway station where I met another girl friend called Anita Daniels her nickname was maneater???. My mates were Jimmy Palfrey from Nechells (lost touch years ago) we used to go to the skating rink, Robert Hipkiss from Victoria Street Small Heath (where are you now?), John Davies from the same area (we are still mates). Lizzie Teague was an item with Jimmy Palfrey for a while in 1966-67. Going for a late curry on the Smallbrook ringway and doing a runner afterwards they even had T shirts made with Horsefair Harriers printed on them and you had to have been witnessed doing a runner to be able to buy one. This is the same place where Alan Fry was caught pinching tools from a car boot by the owner who then gave him a right beating (last I had heard years ago he had become a very upstanding citizen owning a heating firm). Oh very happy days. Anyone want ocontact me chryslerltd (at) hotmail dot com. Iwent around the world a lot and have settled in Bavaria since 2002." Martin Freestone 15/12/2015
"hi janet so sorry to hear of margarets passing even after all these years and so much water under the bridge it still brought a tear to my eye do you remember that poodle I gave her when on leave from the army I visited my mums grave as I do every year and drove up jardine for old times sake so glad to hear from you even with sad news" peter bell 04/01/2016
"Hi, not sure if I know you or even met you, but I worked in the early days for Eddie in his car lot on the corner of Ladypool road and the stratford road. Larry Farrinton was the manager on the plot then, Eddies right hand man. I got to work and open the doors on the opening night of Boogies. Worked in the cedar club and Barbarella's as well. Boy have you brought some memories flying back into my head. They were great times and great days. I remember Chris Fewtrell being very handy with his fists, and Johnny with his head.....I had a great time with all. I am now living in the canary islands for the last 15 years....but gotta say....they where great times....best wishes to everyone around at that time.
Gilbert" Gilbert Sharrard 09/01/2016
"This site still brings back great memories & reminders of some of the old faces around town over the years. Not to long ago I found out that one of my best old mates & my best man at my wedding had passed away. Alan king AKA The Judge was quite a larger than life character who many of you will remember from his days as a DJ mainly at the Swan (Yardley ) & The Bulls Head ( Hay Mills ). He had a Passion for the music he played & could be a bit naughty when performing. Always popular with his punters & I'll always be eternally greatful to what he taught me. The later years of his life were split between Spain & Birmingham & we never lost contact with each other. The last time we spoke he'd just read a short biography I'd written & was phoning people up trying to get a film made about it.....things like that inspired him. Anyway .....to those of you that knew the man remember him as a true Brummie & an all inspiring Disc Jockey....he made other DJs sound like amateurs......RIP." Bob King 14/01/2016
"I worked in the Matador and the Wandering Minstrel for Ann and Dave Hadland. 1966-68 and later again. I was Barmaid and also cooked 24 Scotch Eggs most days. I was called Pauline but went by the name Esmerelda." Pauline. 16/01/2016
"This site ace only just found it i can relate to this site i also spent my saturday nites in bham mostley at crown disco on hill st with freinds does anyone recall someone they use to call sailor e was always in the crown think name david if so do u no what happened to him nice guy" Ann 17/01/2016
"What a great find !! I used to work in the Rotunda (19th floor) at James A. Roberts Architects from 1967-1974.
I spent way to much time at Tavern in the Town, plus a lot of the other pubs/clubs mentioned in this thread.
Tired of the lousy weather, I moved to LA in 1974 and a couple of months later, one of my mates told me, that the IRA had bombed the pub.
Feeling nostalgic,i checked on my Facebook page, and found out that there is to be a reunion for the now defunct MOTHERS CLUB in Erdington, my memory is a bit fuzzy,but I went several times to this club to see gigs by Pink Floyd,The Who,King Crimson, Soft Machine..a lot of famous groups played at this tiny club in Erdington.
Does anyone remember a place called
"The Factory" ?" Keith Ward 02/02/2016
"Ann just read your post if we are talking about the same Crown on the corner of Station st and Hill st. I was in there practically every day late 60s early 70s I knew everybody in there not the name sailor though. I have read a lot of postings and they all bring back memories Good ones. I lived on town for a number of years, so I think I am in a good position to comment.
Best pub in Brum The Crown. Best Night club The Ringway. Best cafÃ© The Mexicarno." townie 02/02/2016
"Replying to Keith Ward's message of 02/02/2016. I had to deliver some papers to James A Roberts Architects in the Rotunda when I worked for Otis Elevators. It must have been around 1970. The one and only time I have ever been in the Rotunda!" Chrissie 09/02/2016
"Thanks keith for your reply we are talking about the same crown, think it was 1964-65 that we used to go... Never a better night out in birmingham!" Ann 11/02/2016
"I used towrope a lot always ended up there after missing last bus home which was most weekends" Ann 11/02/2016
"I also spent many times in towrope after missing my last bus home which was almost every weekend they were really a great bunch that got in there think it was open all nite if i remember right" Ann 11/02/2016
"Remember towrope well usally ended up there when misssed last bus home good gang got in there" Ann 12/02/2016
"Rob Pryke was my uncle - he passed away 25 years ago not helped by his drinking. Rob was always the black sheep of the family and being so much older than me my memories are sketchy although we pick things up from family get togethers (funerals) and I am in contact with one of his grandchildren in the US.
As a kid we went over to see a programme on BBC2 at my Auntie's (our telly was too old to get BBC2) abount famous bankrupt cases. Not sure if Rob had peed his money up against the wall, lost it on the horses or the dodgy ventures he got into. His wholesale groceries business in the market had certainly gone bust which he blamed on the expansion of the supermarkets.
My last memory was in 1981 when I worked briefly in the fruit and veg market in Digbeth. He was about 74 and still wearing his trademark bowler hat.
I vaguely recall the big house and conker trees and there are plenty of family photos of the 50s and before.
The bands that played will of course be stuff of folklore and thanks all for sharing." David Pryke 14/02/2016
"Does anyone remember The Factory on Gas Street next to the Opposite Lock. We used to go there on a Friday night. Brilliant site. Just found it. Brings back som wonderful memories." Yvonne Brown 20/02/2016
"Does anybody knownwhat happebed to Eddie Fewtrells oldest daughter Rebecca,- named rebeccs nightclub after her but now theres a new book written by Abi fewtrell now abi(keogh)-eddies other daughters husband theres no mention of what happened to Rebecca??." Andy Freeman 28/02/2016
"Just remembered the early 60's playing in a band called The Electrons and another called 'B and 3' - playing at The Ritz and Plaza and another venue as supporting act to:
Wayne Fontana & Mindbenders
Pinkerton's Assorted Colours
Stood in for Gerry and the Pacemakers when they became famous and dropped out of the gig.
We would do all 3 venues in one night.........
Peter Galloway" Peter Galloway 03/03/2016
"Just come across this great site. Had some tremendous memories and the odd sad one of Birmingham City Centre. Lived in Saltley till I was 16 then Tile Cross till the early 80s. Used to spend up to 5 nights a week "in town" from late 60s through till the early 80s. At different times went to The Top Rank, Rebecca's, Sloopy's Barbarella's and in the late 60s mainly Irish Clubs like the Shamrock, The Mayfair. Used all the pubs from the Eagle & Tun, The Red Lion - very quirky place, The Hole in Wall, Tavern in the Town, Mulberry Bush, Golden Eagle, Bogarts in New Street, with the Beer Cellar down stairs, The Parrisiene, The Alahambra, The Windsor, Yates was a great place to start the inevitable pub crawl which took us from one end of the town Centre the other visiting many more - lost a few brain cells drinking in those places. Would often end up late at the Tow Rope or even God Forbid the Ringway which was another heavy place. My 21st Birthday was the week before the Birmingham Bombings and up to 150 of my friends and family met either at the Tavern in The Town and the Mulberry Bush before heading off for my party upstairs at the Locarno.. A week later we we're all devastated by the bombings. An old school mate of mine and his brother were both killed - both from an Irish family. Had it been exactly one week before, I dread to think.... That was the saddest of times.
Will never forget those years, as others have said they were so exciting and we were living the dream. We never had much money was as long as we had enough for our smart suits, Ben Sherman Shirts and brogues and were able to go for a drink and to a club later we were happy." Mick McKenna 04/03/2016
"Still asking same queston does anyone remember a chap name david shaw he used the crown hill st in early 60s e drank. There a lot usally when home on leave e was a merchant seaman just wondering. If e may still be aroundhe was a mate to everyone" Ann 05/03/2016
"is there anyone who was at the opening night of the midnight city if so can they put names to the faces on a photo google 18th September 1966 Birmingham midnight city getty images.i have shown the photo to 6 people with no luck carl lanchester" carl lanchester 07/03/2016
"Hi Carl, here is an old post on the Brum historty site from a the girld talking to the guy in the centre.
Cheers matey, Rab.
http://birminghamhistory.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?29247-Midnight-City" Wee Rab 18/03/2016
"well made my annual trip to visit my mums grave in Sutton decided to take atrip down memory lane didn't recognise anywhere I used to work in rackhams took ages to find it the whole centre and beyond seems an absolute nightmare good luck all you young brummies us oldens certainly had the best years all the best to all subscribers would love to hear your comments" peter bell 27/04/2016
"My mum Margaret Stevens as she was then also visited Rebecca's at the time I am sure she would have known Eileen the barmaid and anyone else. If anyone remembers her please get in touch" Lee Morgan 08/05/2016
"Does anyone remember a DJ called DJ Dave Curtis from the late 1960s/ early 70s? Or a local soul/funk band called Captivate?" Amanda 12/05/2016
"Life in Birmingham- 1944, born Drews Lane Near the Morris Commercial factory, my parents owner the fish and chip opposite for a short while, then moved to Old Bromford Lane, where in 1950 there was a huge clay quarry for the Bromford Brick Co. Then to Robert Road,, Handsworth where my Mom had a drapers shop and my Dad worked for Hawleys bakery. Went to Westminster School. In 1954, moved to Banks Road Small Heath, where my parents ran the Post Office on the corner of Mansel Road, attended Somerville Road School. Past 11 plus and went to Waverley Road School
In 1955, was in the Pirates House. In 1958 moved to Old Load Lane, Solihull, My dad bought the Post Office in Mart Street Balsall Heath and I started work at Heart Brand Tool Co. Off the Bristol Road, couldn't stand it so after 3 weeks, took a job at Lawes Rabjoghns in Broad Street, printing Dye Line copies for Architects, it was a shop and basement opposite the war memorial. Great memories of a great City. Have lived in southern Spain for 31 years, miss UK, but now my life is here. thanks to all subscribers for great posts." Steve Wallce 05/07/2016
"Asked this before but maybe someone .ay recall crown hill street bham around 1961ish looking to find old freind from those good nites name was dave e i think was in mearchent navy e. Spoke to everyone in there. Was just wondering if e still around thnks" Ann 12/07/2016
"I was one of three resident DJs working the Silver Blades, Birmingham. There was Frankie Lee in the heartbeat, Memphis (do you remember the military coat ?) and myself Geoff the fez.
We had a great time on the all nighters and when national groups played the rink,The Who, the Hollies,,manfred Mann,,Carl Wayne and the Vikings there were many more. Sadly the building caught fire and it ceased to re open." Geoff the Fez Day 12/07/2016
"Is there anyone around who remembers a biscuit or ice cream factory owned by the Facino family. They were Italian and I may have spelled the name wrong. I think the factory was in the Bromford Lane area. Also does anyone remember the Variety Artist Club in Trinity Road, Aston. It is where the semi-pro entertainers would meet. They would appear in the working mens clubs and social in and around Birmingham during the 195s and 1960s" frank smith 18/07/2016
"still trying to find john walsh and wendy walsh or miller , she has brothers one called keith ," Carol Barrett Bergonzi 19/07/2016
"Does anyone remember the all night jazz events at the Birmingham Town Hall during the 1960's? I seem to remember about three such events taking place. One of the events I had ear marked a particular band to listen to,only to fall asleep in the early hours and missed them, just catching them as they left the stage having finished their gig.
I sort of missed the 1960's pop scene being so much into jazz and folk music. Although I was aware of the latest hit tunes of the time.
My week mostly consisted of - Monday The Junction pub Harborne with Blossom Dearie piano Pete York drums (yes the Pete York}Eddie Matthews on trumpet or being at Midland Jazz Club - Tuesday The Cambridge or The Swan or anywhere really - Wednesday The Golden Eagle Hill Street George Huxley's(still blowing)Band or The Eagle Jazz Band. Thursday The Jug of Punch folk Club Digbeth Ian Campbell/Harvey Andrews and the late Dave Swarbrick. Friday the Ivy Green All Stars Band - Saturday Midland Jazz Club Digbeth - Sunday The Old Crown Digbeth.
If I was not at any of these I could be found in Walsall The George Hotel/Kidderminster or may be Coventry.
When I lived at home with my parents in the mid sixties I remember my mother saying "You had better stay in one night as your father is wondering if you still live here. He has not seen you for a fortnight"
Carol Barrett Bergonzi are you the sister or a relative of the late Mick Bergonzi? I used to knock about with Mick in the sixties/ seventies and even the eighties." Roger H Butler 29/07/2016
"A night to remember at the Midland Jazz Club in Digbeth was when the Count Basie Band with Sarah Vaughan came to the club after their concert, I believe at the Odeon in New Street.Which I had attended. Most of the Basie Band climbed on the stage at the club and started a jam session inviting all and sundry musicians to sit in with them and jam. Many local musicians amateur and professional sat in with the band while Sarah Vaughan standing in the audience looked on. What a night!
Roger Butler" Roger H Butler 02/08/2016
"The name Rob Pryke rang a bell. He organised the Earlswood Jazz Festival in 1960, I believe. I have some photos somewhere of the stage and the bands taking part. One photo I have of George Melly with the Mick Mulligan Band others consist of various other bands including the Sutton Chicago Band featuring Val Wiseman's brother Pete on saxophone.
Around this time I visited my first jazz club in Carrs Lane beneath the Firebird Coffee Bar.The club was known as the Curzon Club and featured the George Huxley Band and Diana Day as the vocalist. The stage was really tiny and the band could hardly get on it. This would have been around 1959/60 I know this as I was still in school at this time preparing for my 'O' levels. How would that go down today with our PC society?
Roger Butler" Roger H Butler 02/08/2016
"I remember the tow rope very well and am surprised you thought you imagined it it was opposite the rum runner and the place to be if you wanted to mix with all sorts of people through the night who remembers Barry who worked their think is last name was Hawkins great guy good when trouble was around all the lads who worked the doors ended up their for a feed i have memory's of Ozzy tony I could go on mentioning names but the night people all would remember the tow rope i live in nz now but my memory of the sixties and seventies are good miss them days a lot . and iam sure their loads of people with the same memory's i raise my glasds to the best years ever brummy beech" Dennis beech 08/08/2016
"Reply to Ann looking for her sailor.Ann If you want I will post your comment on the forum that I am a member. There are people on there that used the Crown in the early 60s." townie 25/08/2016
"Thnks townie for. Your help would be great if. You could ask on the forum you are on once again thanks for reply" ann 28/08/2016
"We called the Tow Rope the Greasy Spoon due to the amont of liquid fat accompanying the items of food." Roger Butler 31/08/2016
"the cafe on Bristol street was El sombrero, are you the terry guest who lived in osler street" tony scott 07/09/2016
"I was a singer in Size Six in the early and mid 60's. We did all the usual clubs and pubs in the area, Ritz, Mackadown, Black horse etc and much work for Mike Carroll. A real gent. Also remember well working at the Pelican club, Dudley Zoo, Chalet Rednal. We also won a Midland Beat competition against finalists The Nomads, our arch rivals!
Trying to think of a dance venue in a pub called, I think, the Linden or Linden Tree. It was run by two huge guys who were very frightening looking, but really great guys.
Gavin Jones" Gavin Jones 12/09/2016
"Hello Carol Barrett Bergonzi,
Gez Kelly here. I remember the days of the Midnight City with Harry and Jimmy. I heard abut Jimmy's passing from Harry a few years ago. Very, very sad. Jimmy stayed at my place one night about 5 years ago (I think, not sure exactly) When he was over here. He cooked a lovely curry for me and my missus and we listened to lots of the old soul tunes (many of which I still have on vinyl)and reminisced about the old days.
We talked a lot of union talk, as I am a local official of the National Union of Teachers. Jimmy was a really nice, entertaining and interesting guy. As you know, I knew the Barretts from when we were snot-nosed kids running around Balsall Heath.
Julie sent me a card with her and Harry's new address on a couple of years ago, but I can't find and have lost contact with them. I sometimes look in a couple of pubs Harry used to go in to see if he's there when I go to Kings Heath. Maybe you know the new address.
I'm still in touch with Alan Fair (remember him?)and I bump into Paddy Duffy now again when I am in Brum.
I hope you are well and that so is Byron. I haven't seen Byron for years. I remember him as a nice lad.
All the best. Gez" Gerry (Gez) Kelly 13/09/2016
"I recaptured so many happy times reading all these memories . ||||I spent most of my spare times at the West End , even went out for a while with Alan Randle who played in Sonny Rose orchestra. My other favourite stomping ground was Midland Jazz Club in Digbeth. Was there when Basies band turned up with Sarah Vaughn after there gig .A good looking guy asked me for a jive and then a date , walked me to the pie shack, (how romantic)I was instantly smitten and we have just celebrated our 54th wedding anniversary.Such happy days. Alex's, Kardomah, Was there a small club next door to Hippodrme?" Sheila Smith nee \Fowler 17/09/2016
"What a great site this is. I have great memories of Rebecca's and Barbarellas . My brother Pete Allen was a DJ at Rebecca's where John Fewtrell was the manager. Ken was one of the door men and there were big Tony and little Tony who were the bar managers. John Fewtrell was a really nice guy and I know my brother Peter loved working there. It was great to read other comments from Barry John and Bob Lynex who I knew . Sadly peter passed away last year , but often when we got together we would talk about Rebecca's and Barbarellas and John and Chris Fewtrell, he loved those days. We remembered days of leaving Rebecca's and going for a curry at the Taj Mahal where they would serve you red wine in a coffee pot because they weren't licenced ." John allen 17/09/2016
"I read that someone asked what happened to John Fewtrell who used to run Rebecca's. I know he ran the Red Lion in Shirley for a few years and that he is now retired and living in Solihull." John allen 17/09/2016
"Pat I have posted your message, if anything turns up I will let you know.
townie" townie 22/09/2016
"I worked at the West Midlands Gas Board in Solihull between 1974 and 1978 as an audio visual technician. Me , Tony, Chris, Graham, Tina and Charlie our boss (rip). Great times and often went to the AERO CLUB which was near the airport. Small but perfectly formed I recall....don't recall any dress code nonsense but it was very cosy. I also was a barman in a pub called the Wayfarer in Hockley Heath which had a disco on 2 nights of the week....always packed. The lock ins were memorable. Later I moved to the Masons in Solihull. They had a good atmosphere too. The lamps over the bar were too low for me and I kept banging me head!" bob ewens 06/10/2016
"Hi Jez Kelly just saw your posting on here, so good to hear from you ! still living in vancouver , jimmy passed away in 2012 i miss him so much there will never be another, Byron is a chip of the old block! union guy till the end he is also quite the Photographer you can see his stuff on line just type in Byron Barrett Photographs . Harry still lives in Kings Heath they moved a few months ago not sure were i will find out , please give my best to Alan and Paddy Byron an me are going to come over in the spring be nice to see you all Best wishes Carol Barrett." carol email@example.com 21/10/2016
"Hi Roger H Butler just saw your post Micheal Bergonzi was my Cousin his dad and my dad were brothers my other cousin Tony Bergonzi lives in Solihull , i live in Vancouver Canada but grew up in Birmingham , Best wishes Carol Barrett Bergonzi .Tony and Micheal Brothers !" carol firstname.lastname@example.org 21/10/2016
"Does anybody knownwhat happebed to Eddie Fewtrells oldest daughter Rebecca,- named rebeccs nightclub after her but now theres a new book written by Abi fewtrell now abi(keogh)-eddies other daughters husband theres no mention of what happened to Rebecca??." Andy Freeman 28/02/2016
www.birminghammail.co.uk/News/Midlands News /Peaky Blinders
Club King Eddie Fewtrell disowns daughter after 'gangster' book claims about The Krays" townie 07/11/2016
"First danced at Holy Family discos Small Heath to reggae and sometimes at The Swan at Yardley. Rocked at The Alhambra sure I saw Black Sabbath there free. Dancedat Rebecca's,Sloopy's and worked at Wimpey Smallbrook ring way Used to go to Yates wine lodge and pub on the canal called The Longboat and does anyone remember a night club called knickers ?" June Hamilton 12/11/2016
"I have just enjoyed a wonderful hour on this site
Memories have just flooded back.
I have written a poem that covers my life in Birmingham through the 60s to now. You've given me so many new ideas for another one.
I'll post it if you are able to use it, it's about 90 verses." Mick Carson 20/11/2016
"As I promised
My personal memories of Birmingham through the years.
I hope you readers enjoy it.
POEM. ' Birmingham the last 50 years '
My memory's of Birmingham for better or Worse,
Are collected together in the following verse.
Jessie Bradley , was Gran to me
She treated us, every Saturday
We got the Tram, from Selly Oak
A penny fare, and that's no joke
The first stop, was the Old Kings Hall
Then through the Bull Ring, as I recall
Into Woollies, for me, Qtr 'o' rocks
Then cross the Market, for Grandads socks
Up to Henry's and Greys, for a nose around
Where nearly everythin , was under a Â£1
Then, to a store, they called the Beehive
Today they would, call it a blooming ' Dive '
Cheap as chips, they'd say today
But my Gran loved it, anyway
These stores were, a Brummie Tradition
Going on Saturday, was a regular mission
Lewis's next, for summat to eat
Then up to the Roof, that was my treat
We'd get back, in time for dinner
Then if our old man, had had a winner.
I'd fetch his doe, from Dawlish Road
From the back ' O ' No5, but no one knowed.
I'd tap, the sash winda
An up, it Ed cum.
Then grab mi, Dads winnins
An run all, the way hum.
"Don't get going out in that Horse Road" our Gran 'ed' say
In one ear , out the other, I'd still go out to play.
We climbed up lampposts, played futta in the street
We paddled in the River Rea, and got socking feet
Played 'kick the can' , win or lose
Then frightened to go home, cause we'd ruined are shoes
Snow sweeping in the Winter, till our fingers were Blue
But it was a great way, to make a tanner or two !
It was all harmless fun, with only the occasional grief
Go on then I'll admit it, it was once a 'thief ' !
Well, we've all been scrumping, but NOT on the make
Just for the fun. ' oh ' and the belly ache
And from the allotments, were we ad our den
We knicked carrots an peas , An got belly ache agen !
And I've had many a clip, around me ear
For stealing, a sip of me Grandad's beer
I loved the Pictures, I really did
I suppose I was just, like every other kid
We use to go to the Oak, Saturday at nine
All the boys and girls, would be queued in a line
The ABC miners, was why we were there
The weekend was here, we hadn't a care
Flash Gordon, Roy Rogers, an the Cisco kid
Eating are ice creams, with a 'bent up lid'
You can't go there today, ask your Fathers an Mothers
They've knocked it down, along wi the others
Some Sundays, in the summer we'd take, the Tram
Me , me sister, me Dad and me Mam
Up to the Lickey Hills, we'd gew
US, an Half of, Brummagem TOO !
And they Picnic there, to this very day
Thanks to Cadburys , we Dain av to pay
Now as a lad, you had to choose
Was was it the Villa, or was it the Blues
I suppose it was me Dad, but I always knew
That I'd only ever wear, the Claret and Blue
Outside the Star Vaults , wi me Rosette and Rattle
We'd clamber on the bus's, like a herd o cattle
The Villa were at Home, so me Dad an me
Headed for the Holt End, Religiously
We cheered em on, win, draw or lose
Then hold our breath, for the score at the Blues
In Union Street, outside the Star Vaults
Dad bought the Argus, to get the results
We got to the final, in Fifty Severn
The Villa fans, were ALL in heaven
I remember queuing , for hours an hours
To get our tickets, for the famous Twin Towers
It was like a dream, we won the Cup for the 7th time
The blues fans thought, it was a bloody crime
They came back to Brum, with tired limbs
Myerscough, Dixon and Nigel Sims
Saward Dugdale, and Stan Lynn
Smith Sewell Aldis and Crowther, helped us win
Two goals from Paddy Mcparland, yes that's right
We beat the Busby Babes, out of sight
Now into the 60s, And me in my teens
Dressed like my Heros in Powder Blue Jeans
Tiverton road, St. Laurence and Turves Green
What an Education, that has been.
Remember me first Push Bike, I'd waited for years
It had Cow Horn Handlebars, an 'Deralier Gears'
Suddenly I was free, and Northfield was mine
I'd be up late for school, and still be on time
I couldn't believe it, what a machine what an invention
I stopped getting the cane, an bloody detention
I was 15 when I left school , an never passed an exam
That really upset, me Dad an me Mam
I chucked away my tie, an me old School Blazer
To face the world, thick as plank, but sharp as a razor
From school to work, no longer a Child
An I'd had me first taste , 'O' the Brown an Mild
I'd tilt my right hand, a stick mi chest out,
As I knocked back the Brown stuff, our Grandad called Stout
We had no Marijuana, no Crack or Cocaine
Nor no Knifes or Guns, to hurt or maim
If you had a row, you played it right
You took of ya coats, an you had a fight
Ya mates formed a circle, to give there support,
And the winner respected, the lad that he fought.
An the local Copper, he's worth a mention
If he said " er son " you 'stood to attention'
"Respect" I think thats the word
Today it's not seen, or even heard
Back in early nineteen, sixty three
The Locarno , or the Tower was the place to be
The Cafes 'El Sombrero' An Smokey Joe's
Ruled by the ' Powell's ' they had no Foe's
With my little White Mini I came alive
During the summer, of sixty five
I went to Nelson House, from me Beatle Jacket
Me flares an Cuban Heels, they cost me a packet
Life was fast, and never a bore
Every Saturday, Villa and I, would score !
We had the Cedar, the Penthouse, an Barberella's
A cracking good night, for the girls and the fella's
The Rum Runner, the Elbow Room, the Opposite Lock
The places to go, if you wanted to rock
All though the sixties, our weekends were wild
Knocking back pints, of the brown and mild
Jiving and Rocking, and suppin the brew
Then getting chucked out, at half past two
Down to the Ringway, or the Grotto for Afters
We had work the next day, by God we were grafters
We must keep these memories, and pass them down
To our kids, and there kids, about life in our town
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Birmingham today, is certainly cleaner
Look at Centenary Square, and the National Arena
With Concerts, an Exhibitions at the NEC
We lead the World, with our History
'BUT' the roads are congested, we've got Traffic Free Zones
No Bobby's to guide us, just Motorway Cones
Snow Hill and New Street, we're built for the Steam Train
Now its Diesel and Electric, it'll never be the same
The ' LMS ' and the ' GWR '
Has had to give way, to the Motor Car
And what did they build, to make all this Function ..!
A Motorway Link called, Spaghetti Junction
Now Broad Streets changed, from Wholesale Fashion
To Pubs and Clubs and 'Nights of Passion'
You can eat and drink, And dance, If you can stand the Noise
From Ronnie Scott's an the Brasshouse, all the way to TGIs
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
But just as we thought, that all was fine
Let me REVEAL , the other side of the coin.
................................. ! ! !
The Victoria Law Courts, have DOUBLED in size
As CRIME continues, to Rise and Rise.
The Swimming Baths Closed, replace by the Sauna
And, VIOLENCE lurks............ round every corner.
Newspaper Headlines, make you SICK to read
Old Lady......BATTERED ..........youth is FREED...!!!!
More Crime, More Violence, Page after Page
But we have to live with it, in this day and age
This may be my own, cynical view
Well, Judge for yourself ......Is It True !
We've watched Birmingham change, over the years
We've had our laughs, and shed our tears
But if I'm honest, an I speak the truth
I love the terraced house, an the old slate roof
I lived, wi me , Mum an Dad, in Selly Oak
We dain av much doe, but we were never Broke
It was me Gran an Grandad's, two up two down
Typical of thousands, in our Town
The Coal House was full, the Back yard was swept
The Step was scrubbed, that's how our house was kept
Yea, gi me the good old day's , they were the best by far
If ya went to the shops , ya left the door 'on a jar'
No car, No fridge, No Central Heating
Ya friends were ya friends, no such thing as cheatin
Everyone pulled together, for the common cause
Just like they did, in the 1st and the 2nd World Wars
But I'm still a 'PROUD BRUMMIE' , I have to say
In spite of the changes, that have come our way
Am I getting OLD...................... and just reminiscing
Or........is there REALLY...........Summat Missing ?
Mick Carson." Mick Carson 20/11/2016
"Hi Mick, my wife Janet is a Brummie born and bred, and she loved your rhymes.
She remembers all the places as does everyone else on this site, and it is nice to read a condensed life story such as your own.
And yes, you are right, there is 'summat missing.'
Respect and tolerance.
The only sad thing is that we complain that youngsters today have no respect and tolerance, but we are the elders, why did they not learn what we had to teach?
Were we not teaching them?
Cheers 'n' beers, Rab." Bob Grey 22/11/2016
"Only came on this site by accident and wow what memories. I was a bit too young for the 60's scene but early 70's were great. Our haunts were Rebecca's, rum runner, the metro, top rank to mention just a few. Also liked the Parisian pub, the gilded cage, and the beer Keller. Thank heavens for the all night bus service.
Does anyone remember or went to the Stagecoach pub on the Bromfird Estate around 1971/2/3. I was one of the barmaids together with Sue Griffiths, jenny Collins, Albert, Dave Crawley, jJane Treasurer. Landlord was Stuart. Happy days.
Loved reading all the memories and rekindling some things I had forgotten about." Carolyn Hudson 24/11/2016
"Haven't said anything for a while but a few things people have posted have said have jogged the old memory box . First John Fewtrell.....I lived in Shirley for years & i use to visit the Red Lion pub & have the occasional chat with John. I have seen him in the area a few times....getting on a bit now. Sad to hear about Pete Allen....i worked at Rebeccas with him for a few years...nice bloke. And finally someone mentioned the Holy Family youth club......i was resident DJ there for a few years in my early years.....almost forgot about that gig . Nice to hear from the past." Bob King 28/11/2016
"I remember the Piccadilly club downstairs on Piccadilly arcade late 60's early 70's. Also upstairs at Bull Head in Yardley and the Swan just up the road from the Bull, apparently the Swan was the biggest pub in Britain. All great places for Tamla Motown, Soul and Reggae. Pubs we went to were the Tavern, the Longboat and the Outrigger near Moors St Station, all in town plus a few locals in Small Heath like the Regents Park Tavern, the Brighton Arms,the Hen and Chickens, near the Blues ground and the Malt Shovel." John Cunningham 30/11/2016
"Does anyone remember in the late 50's and early 60's the Birmingham Art College rags? Some held on three floors with trad and mod jazz, and the college yearly street parade through town? I remember prancing around town in a sheet and some man asking me if I felt foolish behaving like that! Also the small espresso shops where people would go play guitars and just congregate? Hoping others have memories of college activities from back then!" terry 11/12/2016
"Does anyone remember a Birmingham band called Clearwater I saw them at Rebecca,s and the cedar club The drummer is of particular interest, long hair to the shoulders mousey in colour medium height
Any info would be great and a photo would be even greater
Thankyou Annie" Annie Carey 29/12/2016
"Happy new year to u all" ann 31/12/2016
Are you Terry Creswell from Bournville?
I used to know a nutter from the art college who sounds like you.
Cheers, Rab." Rab 05/01/2017
"Does anyone have any more memories of the old dolls club or perhaps know anymore about its owner(s)? A post earlier said it was owned by a Barton and I believe this to be my partner's grandfather, would love to piece together some family history to give to him. If anyone has a picture of the place that would be great too!" Hannah rose 09/01/2017
"Does anyone have memories of Samantha's which was above Silver Blades ice rink. I worked there from 72 to 74. Thursdays attracted all the students with John C. the DJ. Mark Stone looked after Fridays with all the chart stuff, oldies and soul/Tamla. Ricky Barrow did Saturdays along with Mark. Always a good crowd on those 3 nights. Were you there?" Mark 14/01/2017
"What a great site this is with all the memories flooding back ...happy happy days , the Cedar Club on a sunday , Locarno friday, Tower ballroom Saturday , Rum Runner monday night anything else the rest of the week unless of course we neededa break, but of course mid week was usually free to get in and there was always someone you knew who would buy you a drink or two.
What a great time we all had , wonderful memories.." Elaine francis 28/02/2017
"I used to be a croupier at the Run Runner casino, great day's - Peter and Doughty Berrows ran it, the tow rope cafe was across the road owned by Ronnie Williams , then further up Broad Street there was Chaplins Night Club - chaplins Chics used to wear little bunny type outfits that was owned by Ronnie Williams and Peter Sherratt and Gerry Foley was the Manager. Gerry was at Sloopy's for years ...great club !" Mary 02/03/2017
"am I right in thinking I used to go to the Locarno on Saturday afternoon also I am sure I worked on the door opening night club called the royal on corporation st. and was yhere a snooker club further up maybe called the carlton I think it was accessed by lift I don't think club lastrd long it was opened by Ronnie Williams who also owned the tow rope please help and assure me my memory is still ok" peter bell 02/03/2017
"Does anyone remember The Merieka in Acocks Green by the bus depot? Very innocent there but lots of fun. A night dancing and an orange squash for a shilling if I remember correctly. I used to go to Mathew Boulton College, both the old one downtown and the new one on the Bristol Road. After class we would go to The Greyhound for cheap cider, discusting but very economical." Bob Mole 04/03/2017
"I did (embarrassed to say)visit The Dolls Club a few times. I remember there was a roulette wheel and my mate used to bet with half a crown a time! Liked the Locarno but LOVED Mothers. Does anyone remember The Bakerloo Blues Line ? Remember seeing them at Mothers." Kev 05/04/2017
"I remember playing at the "Morgue" Kings Head Bearwood with my Group "The Ergs" in the 60's Supporting the "Applejacks" who had just been at No1 with "Tell me When" Happy Days" Kenny Evans 09/04/2017
"I wonder if anyone can help me. I was a DJ at Rebeccas in the early 70s & i worked with a guy called Tubby Stan ( who was a popular DJ around town at the time ). I recently had his son contact me after a bit of info on his dad. Does anyone out there have any photos or written stuff on Tubby......be great if i can help the guy out ." Bob King 01/05/2017
"Anyone remember the alhambra pub, bands played downstairs, I was in a band called Titus Oates, played there a lot of times and all the other places listed above, it was such a wonderful era to play in a band with fantastic people and yes so happy days all gone now tho. Pete Chance 20/05/2017" Pete Chance 20/05/2017
"Anybody remember the Morgue at the kings Head Bearwood. saw some great groups there including that great rocker Gene Vincent. Also Smethwick Baths were the acts were promoted by John Singer.Was there right at the start when Johnnie Neale and the Starliners supported the main acts also Spencer Davis with Stevie Winwood. great days.Bob Pedler" bob pedler 03/06/2017
"I remember morge in bearwood my friends went there more than me thou also remember smethwick baths if my memory serves me i am pretty sure we also went to thimblemill maybe you remember" ann 14/06/2017
"i was in the Irish centre last week 10.6.2017 watching Black Jack Davy his show is great and I had the pleasure of meeting his wife Abigail Eddie Fewtrels daughter ,a lovely lady .She told me Eddie is not very well and is suffering from dementure as an electrician I did a lot of work for him and his brothers in the clubs and homes Eddie was a lovely man i had great respect for him.I was very sad to learn he is not well" joe fitzpatrick 16/06/2017
"winston and Ray cole brothers anyone know if they still live in Birmingham last known address Kings heath ." carol Barrett 25/08/2017
"Sorry to hear that about Eddie. I only met him once that was in Pollyannas, decent chap as I remember." townie 28/08/2017
"hi haven't been on for a while thought I would just keep the memories going the wandering minstrel was wy fa also the windser near RACKHAMS DOES ANTONE THE HOT POTATO SELLER BOTTOM OF NEW STREET STATION WHAT was the name of club members only plus the only one open on sundays lovely sprung floor" peter bell 28/09/2017
"What was the name of that Club by the side of Snow Hill Station in the 1960s?
I remember seeing Chicken Shack with Christine Perfect play there." david 06/10/2017
"Le Metro. I was there myself that night. Also Mayall and early Fleetwood Mac in successive Sundays." Arnie 10/10/2017
"Anyone remember the Last Chance cafe on Lichfield Road Aston we used to meet there Saturday nights before going off somewhere my hubby Robert born in Sutherland St" Vivienne beach 19/10/2017
"Chicken Shack used to play the Factory down the Gas St Basin; near the Opposite Lock club.So did original Fleetwood Mac with the unsurpassed Peter Green. I learned to love the blues there - and at Mother's in Erdington! In Australia now but still love the blues, in both senses of the word." Andy 29/10/2017
"any out there attended st thomass school in granville st birmingham from 1945 to 1955 i lived in latimer st and very friendly with billy harlow margaret guy ivor hughes george tyler and many more would love to hear from any one who remembers me" barry hopwood 04/11/2017
"My father (deceased)was the white Birmingham comedian in the BBC's 70s series GANGSTERS (Rolf Day), the first series was filmed in the Rum Runner and the second series at Pebble Mill.
My girlfriend (deceased)worked in loads of city centre pubs including The Highlander,the one next to the Tall & Mighty shop on Smallbrook Ringway- Sue Hargrave (from Waldrons Moor, Kings Heath) she was also very friendly with Dougie Thompson of the Rocking Berries(killed in a freak work accident in the 60s) who ran the RAINBOW at the Coop High Street, his brother Brian was the DJ. Sue used to work with teacher and part time barmaid PAULINE CUNNINGHAM
Who was the Portuguese manager of the Rum Runner (ex bar manager) before leaving to set up his own restaurant in the 80s in Edmund St with his son?
Johnny Peake was the manager of The Crown opposite the Rum Runner." Edgar Jessop 28/11/2017
"Only just picked up this site; but a few memories and a couple of replies. Re- the Piccadilly' great club, great soul music but when looking back rather frightening as held in a basement, no discernible emergency exit with unlimited people let in. Also the Factory first act I saw there was Alexis Korner turned me onto Blues. My venue of choice was 'Peppers' at the Queens Head Erdington, DJ 'Mad Moses' sadly gone but a pioneer in Reggae." Steve Cantrell 01/12/2017
"Johnny Peake is name from the past, great landlord, spent many happy days in The Crown" Tony Scott 01/12/2017
"What happened to all of the old 'Mobile Jocks' who, like me, cut their teeth in the pubs around Brum (The Grapes, The Filly, Costers etc etc)....I'm thinking of guys like Steve York, Chris Tees, Dave Keen, Tommy Terrell." Bob Allan 30/12/2017
"All this nonsense about about Burtons and Colliers. I worked in Hepworths in New street and living in Erdington it wasn't worth going home just to come back into town. We would change into clean shirts etc as we were already wearing great suits. Chetwyns and Fred Burn in Corporation St were worth a look in those days. West End resident band was Freddie Brinklow and his orchestra, before group days but when places like the Dolce Vita and Locarno opened, the town exploded. Pubs like the Windsor in Needless Alley, the lamplighter off Bull Street, the Matador, The Toreador, favourite....the Wandering Minstrel. Sunday at the Lacarno was the Tudor Club. First disc jockey i'd ever seen, thought someone was fooling around, some guy playing records Still got my membership card. Wondrous days 1960 to 68. A Brummie "TOWNIE"" Graham Hall 02/01/2018
"Does anyone remember the Aero Club at Birmingham Airport? I think it was called Elmdon Airport back then! I'm looking for a man called Ivan or Ivor who went to the Aero Club in 1970. Thank you!" Tracy 13/01/2018
"I knew Ivor Smith, Tracy. He'd be 65-66 now. Smashing little bloke - big Blues fan from Solihull. I used to go down the Aero in the 70s, where I met the wife. Happy days." Arnie 16/01/2018
"Thank you, Arnie.
Any idea where he lives now or how I would contact him?
Can you remember what he looked like?
Tracy." Tracy 17/01/2018
"Sorry, Tracy. Haven't seen Ivor for 35 years!
He was probably 5'6", thick brown hair, good looking - if you're a girl (!)
Back then his folks lived in a nice area of Solihull.
Good luck." Arnie 18/01/2018
"Can you remember where Ivor worked or what he did for a living, Arnie? Anything else that could help me find him? Thank you. :)" Tracy 19/01/2018
"I'm trying to date when The Ike and Tina Turner Revue played the Whiskey A Go-Go and hoping some here might be able to help me narrow it down. I think I've got it down to four possible dates.
I believe it would have been in October '66, after the summer of River Deep, Mountain High and England winning the World Cup.
If it was indeed '66, it would have been with the three-girl line-up of The Ikettes (with PP Arnold). If it was '68, it would have been with the four-girl line-up of The Ikettes (without PP Arnold). Did the Whiskey close in 1967 or 1968?
Was there a set night of the week when the big name acts appeared there or could it have been almost any night of the week? Were there 'records only' nights?
The Ike and Tina Turner Revue were playing two shows a night on that tour. Did acts at the Whiskey A Go-Go play early (9pm) or late (midnight or later)?
They also played Coventry's Locarno Ballroom, quite possibly the same night as the Whiskey.
They played Leicester on Friday 21 October '66. Birmingham or Coventry later that night would seem possible (one night they did Manchester and then Sheffield!). People have mentioned the All-Nighters on Fridays.
I gather that they also played the Top Rank Club but that would seem to have been in '68, if I'm right in thinking it didn't open until 1967.
If anyone has a copy of Laurie Hornsby's old book, Brum Rocked On!, were Ike and Tina mentioned in that?
Oh and was it Whiskey or Whisky? I've seen both used but not seen photos of the place.
I've done visits to the local library in the past for other multiple-searches but it would be a bit of a long trek for one gig and... would the Whiskey have advertised gigs in the press at all?
If you think you can help, thanks in advance, I look forward to seeing what you come up with.
Nigel" Nigel 20/01/2018
"No idea, Tracy. Sorry." Arnie 24/01/2018
"To Hannah Rose your enquiry posted 9th Jan 2017.
My own father was a nephew of the said Barton Brothers.
I may be able to help you with your enquiry,unless of coarse you have said information.
BTW thank you to everyone for your information,I have many good memories of my time night clubbing,however because of my age had a curfew to adhere to,meaning while most of you were on your way out,the chance was I would be on my way home until well into my 20s.
Marie Scott (need smith)" Marie carole scott 22/02/2018
"To Hannah Rose your enquiry posted 9th Jan 2017.
My own father was a nephew of the said Barton Brothers.
I may be able to help you with your enquiry,unless of coarse you have said information.
BTW thank you to everyone for your stories.I have many good memories of my time night clubbing,however because of my age had a curfew to adhere to,meaning while most of you were on your way out,the chance was I would be on my way home,atleast until well into my 20s.
Marie Scott (nee smith)" Marie carole scott 22/02/2018
"To Hannah Rose 're your enquiry posted 9th Jan 2017.
If your still interested I may be able to fill in the gaps regarding your partner's family back ground.
I am one of many nieces in the Barton clan.
Marie" Marie carole scott 23/02/2018
"Trying hard to remember the Chinese restaurant opposite Harry Parkes and the Law Courts that was upstairs." Lozzie 03/04/2018
"The Dragon Gate Lozzie?" John Lee 05/04/2018
"I'm still looking for Ivor or Ivan who used to go to the Aero Club at Birmingham Airport in 1970. If anybody knew of him can you please get in touch?" Tracy 08/04/2018
"Car loads of us came up from Oxford in 1966 and early 1967 most Saturdays to Midnight City, I still have my membership card - yes, purple with big stars on. We'd sometimes stop off at the Gaff in Banbury. I remember the Who playing on Christmas Eve 1966; they'd come from a previous gig (or two?) and started up about 1 a.m. looking pretty knackered. Some of us got arrested outside at 6ish once. Two of us went into a toilet cubicle to roll and smoke a joint, and when we came out an enormous black guy went ballistic. I never did find out what his beef was about.
Also went to a club above a shoe shop (?) on a corner close to New Street station, not far from Steelhouse Lane; saw Spencer Davies there. When leaving at 6 there were police opposite photographing everyone." Oxford Pete 30/04/2018
"SUE PRICE asked about a DJ at the Locarno in 1967. His name, Sue, was Warren Davies. I was married to him for a while but wasn't around there in the 60s. He passed away in 2013. If anybody remebers him or even has a photo I'd love to hear about it all. I've enjoyed reading your memories all - thanks." Patricia Buck 11/05/2018 11/05/2018
"I remember both El Sombrero and La Fiesta coffee bars and Joe the Greek. I think he got 5 years for stabbing a guy. I was too young to get an invite to the key club. I do remember the Art balls and when the fountain got dyed purple. Does anyone remember the Tutor from Margaret Street - Ivor Abrahams and his studio down in the Lock Street Basin? Went to some good parties there. The Greyhound pub was the place to kick start the night- scrumpy cider and black. The Midland Jazz club in Digbeth was where I learnt the Stomp - never seem to see that dance in any TV archives? And I have happy memories of the folk clubs and the earls wood jazz festivals too and of course the Kardomha - I can still smell the coffee. I read someone's comments about girls being safe on the night service buses - so true- sitting in the church yard waiting for your bus with a hot potatoe covered in salt in the early hours was the norm. Not anymore, my children have never experienced this freedom and it will never return - weren't we the lucky ones. I moved to Buckinghamshire when I got married but came home for visits to the family but not to the City Centre however I now live in Shropshire and I have paid a few visits with my daughter and grandson to the museum and art gallery and the bull ring. None of it compares to how it was in the 60's for me. If only they'd left the Kardomah alone!! My grandson is a big Peaky Blinders fan and I think he was expecting to see the City full of guys in the traditional dress code, he was disappointed but lives in hope that the style will kick off again. I had to explain that this wasn't the norm in my era....I will be introducing him to this website though as I know he will be keen to know what we all got up to.l worked at GKN in the same office as Pete York drummer with Spencer Davis Group and I knew Spencer before the group from the folk circuit and the Greyhound. Used to go and watch Pete when the group kicked off.
Oh, does anyone remember the Woodman Pub? We were all so put out when they pulled it down. Was in there when the yardbirds came in." Doreen Griffiths 17/05/2018
"Re posting this question "Does anyone have memories of Samantha's night club which was above Silver Blades ice rink. I worked there from 72 to 74. Thursdays attracted all the students with John C the DJ. Mark Stone looked after Fridays with all the chart stuff, oldies and soul/tamla. Ricky Barrow did Saturdays along with Mark. Always a good crowd on those 3 nights. Were you there?"" Mark 25/05/2018
"I remember the woodman very well it was meeting point before goin to West End, anyone remember the White Hart pub, just round the corner from Woodman. Think Woodman was only place in brum you could get a stick of beer." Tony Scott 25/05/2018
"I grew up in Castle Bromwich and came across this site by accident. Boy has it bought back many happy memories. I was never allowed to go to Town but remember the names of the places so well. I did go to the Rainbow Suite and Top Rank in dale end. Those where the days you where safe to walk round. Bring those days back! The fun we all had. I trained to be a hairdresser by the Fox and Goose. Used to listen To Pat and Sheila told about All the night clubs. Great Times!" Margaret Kendall nee Robbins 16/06/2018
"Please see Elbow Room Reunion Facebook page for event on July 22nd!" Pauline Mccullagh 16/06/2018
"Anyone remember a man called Ivor or Ivan who went to the Aero Club at Birmingham Airport in 1970? I'm trying to locate him. Thanks." Tracy 22/06/2018
"Hi Tony Scott, I remember the wife's Gran ordering a gin and a stick of bitter in the Highbury at the foot of Dad's Lane, all through the 60s into the 70s. She tipped a splash of bitter in to the gins until closing time, then necked whatever was left.
Cheers, Bob Grey" Wee Rab 07/07/2018
"Me and my friend Phill went to rebeccas on the grand opening night , jj jackson and the greatest little soul band.in the land were on. What a night, What a club. I read earlier somebody said they could have a dam good night out on a fiver in the 60s. Mate in 1967, 2 bob in on the bus, 3 bob in the Locarno. Monday night of course, 3 bob for a drink, on the Floor all night long. Can i have this dance please. Then , thank you. And 2 bob for the last bus back. I used to do it for about 10 shillings a night .I Used to go dancing every night of the year, The only day i stayed in was Christmas day, nowheres was open .Every Monday night Locarno, Every Tuesday night ,top rank suit.Every Wednesday night, Le metro. Every Thursday night Rainbow suit. Every Friday night ,The Heartbeat. Every Saturday night ,The Flower . Every Sunday night, the iron Curtain. Fantastic days. frJohn." john manning 15/08/2018
"Fond memories of the Plaza, Handsworth.
Dating Bobby. He was a Bobby Darin type singer there.
Saw Gene Vincent and many more great guys ," Jacki Finneran -nee Steele 21/08/2018
"I also have fond memories saw the beatles ther and met my first love Margaret Jackson sadly passed but the memories still live on" peter bell 21/08/2018
"i am still trying to find wendy & john walsh they have a daughter Justine wendy,s maiden name was millar its been a long time i live in canada now if anyone knows them and sees this please pass it on Thanks" carol barrett 19/09/2018
"Hello, we are trying to trace anyone who went to the Kardomah Cafe on New Street. If you remember the interior on the first floor I'd love to hear from you." Georgia 10/10/2018
"Can anyone recall a chap they called sailor if anyone drank in crown hill street bham 1964 65 thanks" Anne 06/11/2018
"In 1965 ,I worked as a junior for LUCAS Ltd , great king street.
I was staying at YMCA near snow hill station.
Not far was "The metro" an exiting night place.
I also worked as a dish washer at the "Surfside stop" cafeteria and night club.on first floor
Wilson Picket came with its band ( 2 guys)
Barmaids were blonds and sweety.
These years ,I cannot forget.
At 18 , I have been very happy and loved B'HAM.
Michel" Michel 03/12/2018
"Happy new year to u all on here" Anne 29/12/2018
"I worked in the Rotunda in 73/74 and remember having a week off work after the pub bombings while they checked the stability of the building. Even the windows on the 11th floor were smashed! We then made such a fuss about feeling unsafe that the office moved out of Birmingham. I remember having my 21st at Pollyannas and used to drink in The Hole In The Wall quiet regularly. At the bottom of the Rotunda there were steps down to the market and a little shop where I used to buy my Brutus check shirts. Birmingham has changed so much since then!" Jane 11/01/2019
"I remember Lewis's, Cecil Gee, Biba and Chelsea Girl. I bought a leather mini skirt at Chelsea Girl and wore it every weekend until it ended up having a permanent 'bottom' shape at the back! I had so few clothes, I ended up always wearing the same 'uniform' but that shop was great value and always on trend.
I remember the Top Rank Suite and the Elbow Room which was closer to where I lived so I used to drive there in my Mini and drive home at god knows what time!" Ros Griffiths 06/04/2019
"Great to read all this stuff! Only two references to the El Sombrero coffee bar. but that was a favourite of mine and spent many an afternoon in there listening to Patsy Cline on the jukebox. The Kardhoma or KD as we knew it was another haunt. Was as college in Norfolk House and some of us would often go to the S&U building for lunch and drop water filled balloons onto unsuspecting people at the bottom of the stairs! Oh dear... I was dragged to see The Sound of Music at the Gaumont, enjoyed seeing Ben Hur at the Bristol Rd cinema, both now sadly gone. Lovely, lovely times to live in." Eddie Billington 08/05/2019
"There are a lot of people on here who seem to have misspent their later teenage years in dens of iniquity LOL around Birmingham. Does anyone remember the biggest Queen in Birmingham name of Barry Parker if so I was just wondering if he is still alive or what happened to him/her?" townie 15/05/2019
"Played in a band in the Midlands,base guitar.we .originated from Brandwood school.Kings Heath.Frequented the Ritz kings Heath ,Locarno,the Tower ,Old hill plaza.Was in a band in 1965.onwards.we started as The Zants,Then became lot 4.We came second to the Bobcats at the Locarno beat contest,in l believe 66.Band members were Geoff Boots,no no longer with us but also Loz Cowley,Barry Grainger.woulf love to hear if they are still about.Band later became passion Wagon.Anyone out there remember us" Graham Gunnell 12/06/2019
"Great site, does anyone remember bogarts on new street great rock venue spread over 3 floors. The bulls head pub hay mills on Coventry rd the upstairs room was called the hide away & when mothers moved to the belfry called mothers 2, i saw the who there for 10 shillings with a curry supper" Bob parkin 16/06/2019
"Does anyone remember the Merika (spelling?) in Acocks Green near the bus station? It used to cost a couple of bob to get in and you got a free orange juice with that. Many happy evenings spent there with a great crowd." Bob Mole 05/07/2019
"I remember bogarts very well was our go to pub after Saturday nights hangovers not exactly a quiet Sunday night but who wanted those in early 70s .I worked just a few doors down from there and a quick lager dinner times and plenty of polo mints after ! Boss didn't like the smell of beer over customers haha. My favoured club was Samantha's over the top of the ice rink ,going skating week nights and Samantha's Friday Saturday nights .Those where the days all fun and no worries . Myself Jenny and Janet who worked in the cloakroom had many a good night their. Sloopys, polyannas, Rebecca's, etc tried them all but Samantha's was my kind of music, great rock music played their. Oh to relive those times !" Debby hudson 01/08/2019
"I recall barry qween of bham.he and i spent many time chatin. While sittin in hall memory i dont no whether he is still around thou not seen him in years" I re.member b 29/08/2019
"Hi, great site. Does anyone remember the Factory down Gas Street. Usually on Wed night, Been to most of those mentioned, Such great times to have lived in and brilliant music too. Was sooooo happy to be alive at that time. Love to all xx" Pauline O`Donnell (nee Evans) 12/09/2019
"Recently found a documentary about the old Bull Ring... Which mentions a ballroom on the top floor? Can anyone help me with any information? Thanks so much. Lois K" Lois 18/09/2019
"brilliant site one club that wasent mention was the Samberro by the old Arches were lot of the maltese use to go meet my wife June in 64 [passed away 4 year ago] at the brilliant West End and we use to love going to the Alamo coffee bar in Selly Oak great days" edwin 23/09/2019
"Fantastic site. Remember so many of the names of clubs/discos from the mid 60s. I worked evenings at West End Ballroom and at a solicitors office during the day. Monday evenings at The Locarno whilst at Brooklyn Tech in '65/66. Wonderful memories." Joy O'Gara 02/10/2019