60s Skinhead fashion

The Skinhead look from the late sixties and early 70s is almost a forgotten fashion. Although, most people associate Skinheads with the late 70s and early 80s, there was a strong Skinhead movement in Britain between 1968 and 1972, with 1969 to 1971 being the time when Skinheads were primarily in the news.

Most people think of the 60s as the era of  the Mods, then Flower Power and Hippies. The Hippy era though was mainly a middle class rebellion against middle class values.  Many working class young people found they could not identify with it. They never had the middle class lifestyle to rebel against. Whereas Mod embraced the consumer society, the Hippy movement, although later much commercialised, itself rejected it. These working class youngsters had nowhere to go.

The Skinhead fashion for men evolved from the Mod fashion earlier in the sixties. The original Skinhead fashion was smart style derived from the American Ivy league fashion, although unlike Mod fashion, which was an ever changing scene, the 60s Skinhead became a uniform.

The late 60s and early 70s Skinhead took elements of Mod and was a clear evolution from it. The look was smart. Short hair was a brave statement in the late sixties, when most young people wanted to grow their hair long. The original Skinhead was not completely shaven, but had a short, smart haircut.  The inspiration may have been a combination of the college boy haircut favoured by the Mods and military style haircuts.  A new hero was emerging on our TV screens in 1968 and 1969, the American astronaut. Their short, smart haircuts were the complete opposite to the Hippie style.

By 1968, the Skinhead look comprised short hair, a button-down shirt, or sometimes a Fred Perry instead, Sta Prest trousers or Levi 501s, brogues or boots with an army-style shine on them (often not Dr Marten's for the 1968 look).  Sometimes a suit was worn, often a classic Mod style tonic suit with narrow trousers and lapels, the complete opposite of the flared jeans preferred by the hippies. Ties were narrow, usually striped. Sometimes a cardigan replaced the suit jacket.

The button down shirt was often a Ben Sherman. Skinheads wore gingham check, sometimes other check patterns, or plain Oxford cotton. Ben Sherman struggled to keep up with demand and alternatives from Brutus and Jaytex were also available in similar styles. Fred Perry shirts were also worn by Skinheads in the 60s.

Skinheads wore Crombie overcoats, favoured by gangsters such as the Krays, but smart and expensive. Alternatives were fly fronted gabardine Macs or sheepskin coats. The look was grown up and smart. Very definitely not hippy.

Skinhead was not Mod, since it was much more of a rigid dress code. The Mod look was ever changing with the mood of the Mod fashion of the time. The later 1979 Mod revival, turned the Mod fashion into more of a uniform, but in the 60s being Mod meant you needed to change your look frequently to stay in fashion. Skinheads had no such problem.

Skinheads had a taste for West Indian Reggae music. In the late sixties and early seventies Reggae was underground. It received very little airtime on mainstream radio. One reason for the apparently contradictory liking for ethnic minority music is that Reggae was the music of an oppressed generation. The Skinheads identified with this. Most of all though, they loved the beat.

An early Skinhead band was Slade. They changed their look to glam because of problems getting gigs as Skinheads.

George Melly, in 'Revolt into Style' had no time for the Skinheads, which he also called agro boys. To him they were working class boys wearing a look that passively accepted their limited future. They took on  dead end jobs without protest. Like Mods and Teds before them, Skinheads were involved in violence. Football hooliganism was often put down to Skinheads in the early 70s. In spite of their liking for Reggae music, Skinheads were involved in racist violence, as well as petty crime and acts of vandalism.

From 1970 to 1971, Skinheads conformed more to the traditional image we have of them.  They wore Dr Marten's boots, and trousers or jeans an inch or so shorter than normal length.  They were also making their presence felt in the media.  Acts of violence and aggravation were common, as well as vandalism.

The 1968 to 1969 Skinhead look did not last much into the 70s. Skinheads started to grow their hair longer. The media invented new terms such as suedehead, for a slightly longer Skinhead look. Then they grew their hair long and wore flares and penny collars, like everyone else. Like Mod, the Skinhead look had a revival at the end of the 70s and into the early 80s.

More about Skinheads

There is an article about Skinheads on Wikipedia.

Your comments on Skinheads

"It was interesting reading about a fashion that me and my schoolmates were into in 1970/71.

In 1970 we wore the doc martins with Levi 's + half inch turn up, Ben shermans and Harringtons or Crombie overcoats.

If we were going out to a dance we would wear stay press 2 tone trousers with Brogues and white socks and always clip on braces. Hair was a grade 3 crewcut but not bald like you see skinheads today. We loved Reggae music and had special dances we stomped to, some of our mates were West indian black guys, we all just mixed up together.

By 1971 we had let our hair grow a bit but it was still quite short compared to everyone else, we also wore more of our Brogues and Loafers with coloured socks and less of the boots and braces.

By 1972 the braces were gone and so were the boots and our hair was growing much longer, they called us smoothies or suadheads. The girls still had the feather cut but they wanted us to look less menacing and so we evolved into our own smart take on things. Oxford bags trousers, round collar shirts, smart jackets and longish hair.

I remember buying a smart 3/4 length leather coat around 1973, I think by that time skinheads had all evolved into their own individual fashions and the days of the strict uniform type appearance were gone.

Back in 70/71 we certainly did all look the same and if you were on the street and another group of skins came along they would call out 'SKINHEAD' in a type of football hooligan voice.

I remember masses of us at football matches and the police had a hard time trying to keep us under control, it was a bit like an army - a time I will never forget.

There must be thousands of ex skins from the late 60's early 70's all now in their 50's, perhaps we should have some kind of reunion back at Brighton or Southend." skinhead Martin

"late 60s I wore two tone tonic suit, levi 501s, sta press, ben shermans. my hair was short with longer bits at the bottom.... Love blue beat and ska and reggae, we had certain dances we would do in lines e.g the moon stomp was great, you had to go out with the boys from your area , otherwise there would be a fight if you where with a lad from another town, had certain words you would use, sort was a girl .

On bank holidays we would go to brighton and there would be loads of skinheads on scooters was fun... The best was the clubs with the reggae musci

I wore braces to at times, and a tin pin in your crombie was important...

Those where the days yep should have photos ect on a web site for skniheads of the late 60s" Rose

"hi im trying to get back into my old skinhead dress ways and as a 40 year old guy its quite a hard image to follow. i feel that i can only dress in this way at certain times not all the time because of my profession." m. jones

"best days of my life ,the fashion, the music and the camerarderie 500 skins marching through southport on easter weekend stunning !!! " ste.h

"Hi - hope no-one minds me plugging my book, but if you're interested in not just the skinhead culture but street culture/terrace culture/social history - all things late 60s through the 70s Booted and suited might be of interest:" Chris Brown

"Some fashion memories of '69-'71:

Gingham check Ben Shermans, Brutus, Jaytex and Fred Perry shirts. Levi jeans shrunk to fit by wearing them sitting in a bath. Round crew neck Brutus jerseys. Harrington jackets in black and in Prince of Wales check. Levi StaPrest trousers in Stone, Black, Bottle Green or Navy. Clip-on braces. Crombie style overcoats worn with a red silk hankerchief in the breast pocket secured by a gold tie tack. Brogues, Smoothes, Loafers and heavy and light Solatio Shoes with the woven instep. All double soled and heeled with metal 'quarter tips' on the heels. Doc Martens. 'Docker' olive green jeans. Happy days!" Les

"In reply to Skinhead Martin, there have got to lots of us (what are now called 'Trad Skins') out there, I became a Skin after going through the Mod era of early/mid 60's. I'm wearing the gear, Ben's, Fred's, Cherry Red Doc's, Brouges, Loafers, Crombie?Red hanky, 501's, Tonic's (Trousers & suits), I managed to get a pair of 70's Levi's Sta-Press of the net. Coming from a mining community in South Wales, I remember my first run-in with the Windsor Hells Angels, (we come out of it alright thou!), why couldn't our trend as long as their's? Still dig my gear, strolling along prom and me Reggae/Ska music, why doe's everybody assume we're all Racists?? I have coloured friends, perhaps somebody should take the bull by the horns and organise a reunion?? John Skin69" John Skin

"I agree with John Skin about the 'Look'. Funny we had problems with the Windsor Chapter. They thought they could ride into Guildford and beat up a few Skins(about'69). Unfortunately they came unstuck that night (Sunday-the local Reggae/Soul Club was on) about 300 Skins were in attendance. Never saw them again!" Colin Brown

"Just came across this site, oh what fun we had, I remember all the clothes, and the boys in there suits looked so smart, there we all were in the Lacarno or Top rank Bristol thinking that we were the bees knees. One night I was off to the Lacarno when the bus that I was on got stopped by some passing Hells Angels, I was on the top floor on my own, I thought this is it Im dead I dived on the floor and thank god they didnt see me, they wound the driver up and then got off phew! The music was fab loads of reggae and tamla motown. does any body remember the fairs they always seemed to be in town. Does anybody remember the cafe Never on a Sunday none locally as the never." julie

"Hi Julie, the book I mentioned above 'Booted & suited' features many interviews with some of the 'Never' boys, take a look at the link, the front cover features a pic of the lads in Fairfax Street - you might recognise some of them." Chris Brown

"In reply to Colin Brown from Guilford, Hah! you an your mates musta given that Windsor Angel mob a right shoe'in, Was from 70 to 73 they came to Porthcawl and started, every Bank holiday, some of em went thro shop windows, we tipped a mini-van over and shotguns an meat-cleavers fell outa it!! Scary, but we got to the angels before they could use em, they stopped coming when everybody started growing their hair and the Ole Bill stopped em entering the town. I still wear and love my gear, got shaved head now, (Father Time caught up with me!), couldn't walk round with just a bit on the sides or the Dreaded Comb-over! Keep enjoying the threads and proper reggae/ska music! Keep the Time Alive NOT just a memory!" John Skin

"Well said Martin...There should be some kind of yearly convention for Ex Skins organised...The Original 60's/70's (But also open to the 80's lot)...

With the old Reggae hits thumping out that beat that we all still love to this day...Dekker-Untouchables-Prince Buster-Holt-Kingstonians etc etc... Just bought that Ska Mania CD & some good old stuff on there... Knees up Mother Brown on the Terraces...Still own a 'Posh' Harrington & Brogues to this day..." Gary

"Just looked at a site, skinheads a way of life and there is a 40th Anniversary birthday bash, The West Coast Bar, 3-5 King Street, Margate, CT9 1DD on July 31st-August 2nd 2009. tickets 10plus postage, or it says 15 at the door. Work permitting, I'm gonna try and get there from South Wales, be nice to meet a crowd with the same outlook on life, music and clothing. Happy Days, hope you all get there and have a great time" John Skin

"Nice to read some old stories from the time. I remember going out and getting my longish Mod style hair shaved off in 1969 (I was only 13) and My Ma decided to lock me in my bedroom until it grew back again. She\s still trying to do it now, and I'm in my fifties!! Great fashions at the time, I remember having hob nail boots and a donkey jacket (very fashionable) Also made to measure suits from Burtons. We went from Skinheads to Suedeheads then smoothies and then brollyboys and I still like to dress the same way now (when allowed by the wife!!" Jim Mac

"oh, man do i remember first crop in 1968, al copone, guns of navarone, train to skaville, long shot kick the bucket, started with monkey boots, fly front mac, old mans vest and braces. Then graduated through to 1973 as a real smooth. The wailers 'catch a fire' was all the rage by then. High points- scotch week at butlins, Millwall away and the sorts halterneck dresses.Now old and grey but still have the memories." Geoff

"hi! I very much enjoyed reading the text and your comments, but I am left with a question: who are the BROLLYBOYS?? I guess from the context that an evolution of the Smoots, but that evolved aesthetic sense and musically? thank you very much." alvaro

"just came across this site - glad Im not the only one with gr8 memories of the late 60's early 70s as a skinhead & suedehead. DMs, levis, very narrow braces, 2tones, levi sta-prest, ben shermans,jaytex, crombie, solatios, royals and squires. Still wear Ben Shermans most of the time,[but a slightly larger size!] -but cant find a red or blue stewart tartan short sleeved anywhere. Levi 501s still a must. Time has also taken it's toll and I now shave my head!! More acceptable now for some reason!!!! Football @ Chelsea on a Saturday afternoon - or away somewhere upt north. Still love old style reggae and soul stuff. Keep the faith" rob55soulboy

"Alvaro - Brolly boys were just another name dreamed up by the red tops describing us smoothies - this would have been 1971, crombies, rupert bear check strides, loafers, brogues, barrathea blazers with badges on the patch pocket - get down Eastville market and buy a brolly for a couple of quid, file down the end in metal work classes or as a mate of mine did, cut it off and insert a thin stilletto blade in it - all for show mind. Within six months it was all over, bumble bee sweaters, mad cap shoes and collar length hair - happy days. Get and read Booted and Suited you'll love it!" Chris Brown

"Great site. I was a Skinhead, Suedehead, Boot Boy and Smoothie from 1967 to 1976 when it died out. Those days were the greatest times to be young. I still wear Ben Sherman, Doc's and my Barracuta Harrington and of course a Crombie overcoat topped off with either a Trilby or Beret.

All the gear mentioned above i wore. For me it was the best gear ever and the most exciting era of all. I loved the buzz of our war with the Greasers and the adrenalin you would get whenever we met up with them.

Football was another great event for Skins and i remember when we first emerged we were called Bovver Boys by the press. Yep great days. KEEP THE FAITH." Paul Matthews

"Great news for Rob 55 Soulboy,Brutus are remaking the now legendary Trimfit button down in red tartan, bought one couple of weeks ago great shirt, try Atom Retro or Jump The Gun." Les Roy

"Brutus Trimfit - hmmmm, the clue's in the name, might have fitted me well back then when I was 15 but nearly 40 years on and might just be a tad snug! Booted and Suited " Chris Brown

"thx les roy 4 the heads up on Jump the Gun - [one of my tagged sites] Chris Brown is right though - only up to size "L" - no good to me now????!!!!!" rob55soulboy

"Tonic suits with 15in centre vents, 1000 dex for 20 from finchley high rd. BD career club shirts from Richmond. Down the Trade till 11.00- on the train to Tiles Oxford St and the subway- or straight up to Bromley South Peyton Place or the penthouse and listened to Neville the Enchanter with the middles blanked out on his records- listened to Right track Billy Butler-Marching off to War William Bell-Deon Jackson- Love makes the world go round and the greatest of all Shanty Town Insrumental -Soul Bros & Roland Alphonse would kill for that track.Out of the club covered in stains from the sweaty walls on to a train up to Liverpool St station then up the Lane on a heinious come down staring at everyone. Leave te lane back on the train to Watford Jun and off to the pictures whatever sort you can get." E.

"Hi, been trying to get some shoes I loved years ago. I called them Plain caps, they were heavy leather sole shoes with a highly polished plain top. I use to wear them with sta prest levi`s. does anyone know there correct name as I feel I may have to order from USA." steve

I think plain caps is the correct term. They were also known as GIs. The brogues were called wing tips. Retrowow

"So many questons, and loads of answers, the plain Gibsons you can get in the USA, Florsheim Imperial, Aldens and Allen Edmunds make them, called Leeds. You can buy loakes 711 plain oxfords about £95-110 , identical 'last' to the Royal Brogue but without the brogue. I still wear all the clothes, but mainly the smart stuff, as I am well into my fifty's." johnG

"I am pleased to say,there is a proper 'Revival' of Skinheads going on. All over the Country there are Reggae Nights-were you can hear the Sounds from the 60s and 70s being spun (if you look out for Flyers for 'Sound and Pressure', you will get the Sounds played on an old JAMAICAN sound system. Brilliant. The Fashion is there again, Two-Tone Tonik Mohair Suits, the Shoes-the Works. What also is great about this 'Revival' is you meet People from all over the country. The 60s Skins mix happily with the 70s/80s ones. Something that would not have happened in the 60s." Colin Brown

"does anyone remember who made the classic loafers. these shoes are no longer available but i would like to find the designs?" viago

"I would never say skinhead fashion was dead.... im 24yrs old, it seems most of my life I have been dressing like this and never realised. Or it could just be that my Dad was one of the original skinheads :-)" Tom

"im only 30 but have listened to all sorts of reggae{especially trojan stuff}for 17 years. i wear fred perrys and ben sherman and have a skinhead but dont wear doc martens or any other stuff. i guess you old timers think im a wannabe but i like the style and love the music!" ross

"Ross, go for it my old (young in your case) mate, send me your email address and I will return with a copy of my 'work in progress' that depicts all the clothes/shoes from the era. Still a bit of work to do, but had fun doing it . I started it because I got fed up with reading laods of facist nonsence about skinheads, bleached jeans, shaved heads, and DM's up to the knees. The fashion was and still is extrememly well balanced and shows real quality if worn correctly. £350 was my last investment into footware, shell Cordovan plain Gibsons from the USA. johngodwin@btinternet.com" johnG

"does anyone remember rayseam trousers - very smart in prince of wales check - with a nice blazer and royals...." Mike Godfrey

"I was a skin back in the day ,and still am .now in my 50s i still wear my docs,brogues,loafers,crombie,twotone suits,levis ,braces,harrington cravats and tootle scarves , ride a lambretta ,attend rallies and skinhead events ,there is more out there than you think come on all you skinheads OI OI ." Tim Lewis

"Raised in the 1960's skins environment but was only 12 at the time. Regular visitor to the Barber shop! Looking for any clubs social nights get togethers?" Phil

"im 39 and have been a skinhead since 83. For that time in the states, skinhead was a more bald punk look. It wasnt until i started to delve further into what skinhead was. By 84 i was a proper skinhead, the only one in my area who wasnt listening to oi exclusively. Well here it is 2010 and im still a skinhead. Its a lifestyle choice that i choose to live, much to the chargrin of my ex wife and kids and the public in general. im not booted and suited as much anymore, mostly bens, brutus (ya, they're back in business! ), freds, levis, an adidas samba trainers but the heart is still there Hell, im still riding the same lambretta i rode when i was 16! Good times and alot of good memories. Skinhead forever, forever skinhead." chris

"I remeber going to Gt Yarmouth 69 in the back of my dads car and Skinheads were every where. I thought I was going to dress like that. My old man said if you come in with a pair of those boots they will go on the fire. I was 11. I started High school that year and took a job in a car wash. First thing I bought was a pair of Doc Martins boots, Cherry red. I never looked back. I joined a local Gang on a sprawling council estate in Luton and still see my old mates. I only wear Royal Brogues and a real velvet collar Crombie. £460 Ouch. My misses says once a Skinhead always a Skinhead.Keep the faith" The Bunnyman

"for anyone wanting to relive those glory days why not try visiting a scooter rally or two, great people, great tunes, great vibe, oh, and loads of ale of course. scootering magazine is a good source of up and coming events. it also gives dates of various dos and nights out, trojan explosion, ska,r eggae revival etc. bound to be something to suit the discerning skin of old wanting to get out there and stomp and skank around. 'keep the faith' " LEE(AGEING BUT STILL PROUD SKINHEAD)

" I born in 1956 and was a mod from the age of eight. By 1970/71 I'd begun to be influenced by the 'townie' look, which was a cross between mod and skinhead. I don't know how geographically specific this term was, but most of the descriptions of suede-head fashions above (Ben Sherman/gingham shirts, clip-on braces, tonic suites, crombies, brogues, lofas, D.M. shoes -rather than boots-, Levi jeans or sta-prest, pocket hankies etc) are what we in the West Midlands would have termed the 'townie' look. I was delighted by the so called Mod revival of 1979, the essence of which was exactly how I dressed eight years previous. I was also delighted because it asserted the anti-racist credentials of the movement. Most of the post-mod cults around 1970 were so heavily into reggae music that racism was frowned upon. Mod was, in many ways, politically progressive. We were into the US Civil rights movement and CND. Like Curtis Mayfield, we were keen to 'move on up' in the world; we wanted change and we were upwardly mobile. There were hard core skins, but they were definitely on the fringe of the scene. I recall black and white kids grooving on down together on many occasions and in many venues; indeed, the best dancers and stylists (the 'faces') were often Black kids. Anyway, just a few thoughts from an old timer..." Chris Lewis-Jones

"1969 - I wonder where all the boys are now from the front cover of Symarip's Skinhead Moonstomp album - I used to stare at that cover for ages, being a 14 year old girl at the time. We dressed just like the boys, 3 button tyedye 'grandad' vests, braces, Levis ( 5 quid a pair in those days ) and Doctor Martens boots - big socks inside to take up the slack ! Castle ballroom in Richmond - there were some some real fights outside there at night !

I progressed to a gunmetal and rust tonic suit and sometimes levi sta prest, with checked ben sherman shirts or brutus shirts and fringe and buckle loafers in 1971, wore Brut aftershave ( all the girls wore Brut so we smelled just like the boys, but we didn't shave, honest ! )I don't suppose the boys did either - haha !

I was a tiny little girl, who thought I was hard like all the lads did, I must have looked so funny, but I loved it. Now I'm 55 with 2 grown up sons. There has NEVER been a fashion since, that compares with those days. Everyone thinks the skinheads started in the 80's. They didn't. 1969 was THE year.

Love ya boys !!! Bet you're all grandads now - with or without those vests we used to wear !!!!" christina mccarthy

"Hi Christina, I think those shops in Richmond (Ivy?) most have been having you over - bought my first Levis for £3, Sta-prest were £3 and 10 shillings - bargain! Best days of our lives without a doubt. Think I heard those lads from the Symarip album were from Blackpool of all places." Chris Brown

Booted and Suited - by Chris Brown

"Can anyone out there tell mw where I can buy clothing in the skin style late 60s early 70s?? Am attending a reunion and would like to look the part, especially the white tights with a line of holes down the sides. also tonic suits both men and womans. " Bev

"Bev, this is not a part time 'once in a reunion' kinda thing. A suit if you can get one thats authentic is well into the £100+. I have just paid over £70 for some mohair/wool fabric which I will have made into a tonik suit and it will cost me about £250.00.

I wish you the very best on your reunion (its an island, right?) most of the tights, with the holes down the sides, you mention would have been ripped off long ago I imagine, and I don't mean copied in a sweat shop in bangladesh. regads " johng

"Hi Chris - I KNEW I'd been taken for a ride with those Levi's ! Yes it was the Ivy shop - at 14 I was pretty impressionable and believed most things, including prices; those were the days, A ! 'Just a bit' older and wiser and NOW......I'm going to get your book ! Christina PS Thanks for the Blackpool info on the Symarip front cover! A 41 year old mystery solved at last." christina mccarthy

" i loved, 1970, crombie, red silk hankie, sta prest, who remembers gibsons, shoes, i had the lot, i can c my self now, two tone jacket, white sta prest and brogues, fred perry and braces, and more i still dress , simuler now, its in yer blood, im 52, now. and u could allways tell a wollie , the way he dressed, f loved it." joe ross 20/04/2010

"John Simons ran the Ivy Shop Richmond (clesed 1995) and a shop in Covent Garden selling all the gear (closed Feb 2010). http://jsimons.website.orange.co.uk/" lambolini 24/04/2010

"John Simons shop has shut in Covent Garden? That's a crying shame - bought my last Baracuta Harrington in there a couple of years back - always visited it when in London, quality gear, not like the knock offs in Carnaby Street." Chris Brown 25/04/2010

"Hi Christina mccarthy the guys off the moonstomp album are 3 lads from blackpool and one from manchester still around still legends :-) KTF sister" Agent Double O Soul 25/05/2010

"Those were the days my friend.Gone but not forgotten." HEARTS FC SKINHEAD 1970 ONWARD 27/05/2010

"I'm a skinhead 60s girl. Trevira mohair tonic suits, sta-prest, Ben Shermans and the sheepskin coat. We were from Ilford and danced at the Ilford Palais on Saturday afternoons. Music was all that is mentioned on here. Al Capone was huge! I wore "granny shoes" from Anello and David Tottenham Court Road in matching colours to suits. I'm 55 now and can never forget those fantastic days. I am now a DJ and still enjoying all the Tighten Up stuff! I loved the feather cut cropped hair back then! Any one else from the Palais days reading this? So glad I found this site! Hills" Hills 01/06/2010

"love all the comments about being a skinhead 52years old and still a skin theres still plenty of skinhead reggae dues on and i still have a scooter is that really true that the lads on skinhead moonstomp came from up north all those years and i never knew that
tony from epsom" tony jones 01/06/2010

"Hi - Agent Double O Soul 25/05/2010 !
Thanks for the info !
Are those boys really still legends? I wonder what they look like now - they must be in their late 50s as I'm 55 now. I still get a bit fizzy when I look at that album cover, even after all these years, how weird is THAT !

HILLS 01/06/10 - keep playing that music girl, you know it makes sense !
Have you still got the haircut? I can't find that style in a magazine anywhere and there isn't a stylist out there who has a clue what I'm talking about when I try to describe it. That was a one - off style from the 60s era, never been repeated, I couldn't find it even in 80s when there was a skinhead revival. I remember coming home with that cut in 1971 ( plus blonde streaks ), having gone out in the morning with really long dark brown hair I could actually sit on. My poor old dad nearly had a fit, my mum told me later he nearly cried he was so upset. I thought I looked fantastic !" christina mccarthy 04/06/2010



"I was 16 at the start of 1970 living in guisborough cleveland a small market town in the north east of england. I became the first skinhead in the town and over the next couple of years lead the way in skinhead fashion. music .ect.skinheads had never been seen in the town before and i realy caused quite a stir .A new era in my life was about to start.I can relate to what everyone on here says.DM;S levis.ben sherman's .brogues. loafers double sole.s metal segs front and back.crombie.s red silk hanky in top pocket.tram line.s in my hair .IN 69 THE MOST CONTROVESIAL TEENAGE TREND HAD BEGUN. THE SKINHEAD FASHION WAS SWEEPING ACROSS THE COUNTRY. SKINHEADS . SKINHEAD GIRL.S WITH THERE PROVOCATIVE LOOKS . SKINHEADS THE WORLD WOULD NEVER BE THE SAME. 70tezskin albo" mr alan edwards 29/06/2010

"skinheads took pride in how they dressed .How they looked.no other teenage generation would have such a impact on society.I went through every changing faze from skinhead.suedehead.bover boy. boot boy.brolly boy.while listen to double barrel. monkey spanner.dave n ansel collins.liquidator. and pressure drop.and life on the terraces . 70tezskin albo" alan edwards 29/06/2010

"Glad i found this site.great reading your accounts of the skinhead days.Late 60.S and early 70.s skinheads skinhead girls are the only people who can give a true account of the real skinhead era.And not all the other bull shit people talk about skinheads.We lived in the greatest time ever to be a teenager we were skinheads.That time will never come again. 70tezskin. albo" alan edwards 29/06/2010

"Me and my mate Graham (haven't seen him since 1971) were two of the first Skinheads in our town in late 1968. Couldn't afford DM's then so we bought Army Boots which were killers, polished up a treat.
I nicked my blue clip on braces from a local shop (yes shame on me, tea-leaf!)which I STILL have. We wore what were known in those days as "Car" coats which were sort of a Donkey jacket type. I got Docs later but prefered the heavier Army boots. The mods hated me at the local youth club. I'd put ska on the juke box and they hated that too.
It was a fun two years but I had always wanted a motorcycle when I used to see the Greasers/Rockers tearing around so became a "greaser" when I turned 16 and got my first motorcycle and leather jacket, and covered it in studs etc. Ha. I still have that jacket too. Rode bikes for the next 40 years. Happy days." Mart. 03/07/2010

"i was born in '78 so altho i had most of the gear i hated it, we were skint as most was bk then so it was all hand me downs, i was 5 years out of date an looked rediculas, however as ive gotten older i love the gear an have a whole wardrobe of skin stuff perry's ben's crombie cherry red dr martins an a whole stack of 501's just brought some henry lloyd deck shoes so its progressing abit now anyways there are plenty of places round birmingham you can go and listen to ska ect. i think it'll never truly die oi oi !" big dan 06/07/2010

"Good to see this blog is still alive and well, I am off to a Soul_ Ska function in Magate this weekend. I'm a bit old for this sort of thing to be honest, but can't wait to see all the original skinheads and what they now wear, still some excellent stuff around if you know where to look. Hey, Chis you haven't promoted your book in a while mate, you OK? were you ever actually a skinhead or do you just write about it, genuine question by the way.

kleep the faith, good health to you all" johng 07/07/2010

"60.s early 70.s skinheads skinhead girls . only we know .you needed to be there. live it. to know about it. the youth of today have no idea.SKINHEADS THE WORLD WOULD NEVER BE THE SAME." 70tezskin albo 12/07/2010

"Anyone remember 1968 at the South Twenty club in Cheam village surrey, listning to reggae and ska in crombie, sta-prest, brogues, Ben sherman, pork pie hat fron brixton market. Doing that dance where you just stood in the same spot swayed and moved you arms a little bit. Good days." Chris R 15/07/2010 15/07/2010

"Anyone remember The Walton Hop - all us girls in trevira suits and ben shermans with those funny holey tights, dancing in lines to Prince Buster and Desmond Dekker and the Aces. God forbid you got that danse wrong !
I found an old record cover of SHAM 69 Hersham Boys (clever Jimmy Pursey - short for "Walton and Hersham football club 1969" graffiti) I had a big CRUSH on you haha - punk band really, but had a MASSIVE skinhead following in the late 70s. All the lads pictured outside the local pub on that record cover - Basil Dalrymple I can see you in that picture - where did you get to !?" christina mccarthy 27/07/2010

"OMG! I used to be at The Walton Hop every Sat at least...drenched in AquaManda, hair washed in Linco-Beer out of a plastic beer barrel...all us girls checking our outfits in the long mirror by the cloakroom and then downstairs dancing THE dance to Stoned Love, having practiced all week...those were the days." Sue 02/08/2010

"SUE !
Did you have THE hair cut ???!!! There isn't a stylist anywhere who seems to know that haircut anymore - I'll probably end up in the barber's !
Remember Nathan Jones ? That and Stoned Love are STILL my favourite Supremes songs. I used to be doused in Brut Aftershave - me and my mate Maisie put so much on once, she was SICK !
Remember if you accidentally caught the eye of one of those " nasty girls " ?? Over they'd come and say " Are you screwing me ? " And then the fight started as I always found it impossible to back down. Still do - haha !" christina mccarthy 06/08/2010

"1970 guisborough cleveland. the windmill cafe was the meeting place for us all.skinheads skinhead girls waiting for the coaches pulling in on there way to whitby or scarborough .battling with the geordies and the macams most summer weekends. SKINHEADS THE WORLD WOULD NEVER BE THE SAME......." 70tezskin albo 06/08/2010

"I am 51 years of age and you can wear the following clothes at ANY adult age and look classy :

Barrucata Harrington
Levis 501s
Ben Sherman / Fred Perry / Penguin

Just look at the "latest" Next Catalogue for example;
Many of the "clothes" are here today & gone tomorrow !!!

Keep the "Classic" Mod / Skin Look - saves you Money. Can look professional without any intimidation." Anthony Hayes 09/08/2010

"Hi Christina, not sure what hairstyle you mean, mine was short on top with longer bits at the sides and back, (if that makes sense), it was highlighted then it became the craze to have the front bleached so I did that too! The Supremes are my fave group ever and I never tired of dancing to their songs. As I was and still am only 5' I never wanted to catch the eye of a 'nasty girl' so would probably have relied on you to get them for me!!!!! LOL" Sue 14/08/2010

"Looking for skinhead girl clothes...Does anyone Know any good shopss/websites...Alos do people do mod meet ups???" helen 14/08/2010

"Yes Sue that WAS the cut, it was short on top, quite long at the sides and back actually, but feathered all the way around and I had the front done blonde as well ! Haven't seen that cut for YEARS !
Don't worry girl, if you're small, I've got your back, you know - being 5ft 3, I tower above you haha !" christina mccarthy 17/08/2010

"I've been attending scooter rallys for the last 14 years now and it has been amazing! The people you meet are great, down to earth, funny people. The skinhead style has been the thing that stands out the most for me. So smart, so clean. You can't beat a skinhead lad on a Saturday night, dressed to the nines in his suit and boots!" Becky 22/08/2010

"All dressed up but no where to go ...no matter where or when SKINHEADS took real pride in there apperance.Ox blood polish on our DM.s. loafers or brogues with double sloes, segs front and back.ben sherman.s .fred perry.s .crombies.levis or sta prest.two tones.can.t remember about differant coloured socks and hankys.they had some meaning???????? we all looked f???ing great.SKINHEADS THE WORLD WOULD NEVER BE THE SAME ....ALBO" 70tezskin albo 24/08/2010

"hi..bovver girls and boys..especially Hill, Sue and Christine..I thought I remembered most of the skinhead days now aged 56, you lot have reminded me of forgotton things such as Aquamanda, trevira mohair suits..I used to hang around with The Basildon skinheads but then had a boyfriend from Southend did not go down well...used to go the Ilford palaigh (cannot spell it) and The Mecca Basildon, bank holiday southend getting the greebo's.. brute aftershave, sticking our sideboards down with cellotape to keep them straight..and the dance to Stone love all in a line..never forget it!" Jan 01/09/2010

"skinheads, reggae and slade.RICHARD ALLEN BOOKS AND THE FASHION,MAGIC" a.mcsoley 06/09/2010

"Where can I find a decent Tonic suit. cheers" a.mcsoley 06/09/2010

"just came back from a triffic weekend at skabour folkstone, place was full of skins scooters and ska music bloody fantastic." denzilpc 06/09/2010

"Is there a web forum for old (50 plus) skinheads LOL. where we can relive the good old days.and perhaps arrange a reunion of some sort ( without the puch-up )" denzilpc 07/09/2010

"I am amazed and delighted to have found there is still an interest. I became a skin in 1973 here in Ireland. Here it was just exactly as you have all described. It was about fashion and music. Never any racism, though I have had people assume that I am racist. There was a lot of drink and loads of violence for anyone that wanted it. Sometimes I thank my lucky stars for the way my life evolved. I am invoved in motorcycles now and I guess that is because there is no local scooter clubs. There are some other local guys that would be of the later Skinhead fashion that are also into bikes. I think I will have to keep my eyes peeled for some scooter meets over here. I actually found this site as I was looking to possibly buy a scooter. Is it possible to still get the loafers with the rib across the back?? any I have seen advertised appear to be plain. one type of foot wear I don't see mentioned is Crepe soles or we used call the wedges. The comment about starting out with Monkey boots was true for me too. Guy's please keep this alive. Skinner,(sitting here in a Ben Sherman and a bomber jacket in my locker) now 50 in Ireland." skinner 08/09/2010

"hi m8 just got a pair of loafers with the rib on the back + fringe and tassles from MOD CLOTHING on e-bay" denzilpc 08/09/2010

"Sound, Thanks." skinner 09/09/2010

"Skinner -
If you look at the john.simons.co.uk website, he has a new shop opening soon according to his page and you can click on it to sign up for a newsletter. That'll keep you up to date with what he will be selling. He had a shop called the Ivy 40 years ago in Richmond and another in Covent Garden that closed earlier this year. He hasn't given up yet obviously, so don't you either - haha ! Get that Harrington out of your locker !
Christina." christina mccarthy 09/09/2010

"Christina, Excellent, will look it up. The Harrington is used regularly but I may get some more clobber to go with it. I have a more modern crombie but would like to pick up the old style but I don't think I would bother with the football crest like years ago. Since I have started to do a bit of digging I have found out about a SKA night coming up locally. Maybe there will be a bit of a revival. I hope so!! Being my usual rebel self I am considering doing one of my bikes in a Specials theme. don't know what sort of reception I would get from scooter riders but what the F**K, I was there. Thanks for all the info." Skinner 10/09/2010

"found a great forum for all skins non pollical just a place for all you skins out there to chat and meet! uk skinheads" denzilpc 11/09/2010

"Go here www.ukskinheads.co.uk

Register for the forum-over 1000 members consisiting of original and traditional skinheads-best skinhead site on the net bar none." Shep 16/09/2010

"Great site, does bring back memories. I am now 51 and was a skinhead in 1970 onward. Lets get one thing straight here, NO ONE wore a Barracuta Harrington, no one could afford them and they weren't even know about by most skins. The Harrington Jacket that Skins wore were made in England, nearly always Black and Tartan lining, living in London, we used to get them from Camden. Nearly always Levi Red Tab sraight cut jeans and always Cherry DM's polished with a lot of hard draft using the cream.
Beige stay press trousers were an alternative. Single colour clip on braces over a multitude of different types of tops, we could not afford Ben Shermans to change into everyday or named polo shirts but all had at least one Sherman.
Got a Harrington from a London shop last year and it was just like the original if not the same, but i'm not going to promote them as i'm not getting paid to advertise there name! Today, black Dm's look just as good and as we have more money today can afford named tops, Fred Perry, Ben Sherman etc." Steve 17/09/2010

"Hi JohnG - yes I was a skinhead first time around, I'll be 55 this year so was one of the young 'uns, as anyone who was around then will remember by the tail end of '71 there wasn't a skinhead to be found (not in the south of England at any rate). Can't say I was too enamoured with the late 70s revival - didn't quite have the class and the style of the original bootboys.

Steve isn't wrong when he says no-one wore Baracuta's back then, not because they weren't around but we just couldn't afford them, most of us in Bristol at any rate wore zip up suede or even leather bomber jackets bought from ex-Army stores, we all believe they were from the Korean war, but not so sure - they certainly had irridescent Tonik linings which I guess also appealed to us.
By the way, Baracuta is a British company, think they were originally made in the 30s as a golfing jacket.
The other thing that is greatly exaggerated is the common thought that we all wore DMs, most of us started with ex Army hobnail boots then progressed onto Monkey Boots - there certainly weren't many DMs around in 1969 that's for sure.

OK go on then - I'll plug my book again:" Chris Brown 18/09/2010

" Used to wear Ben Sherman shirts as a 15/16 year old. In my moving from skin to suade phase..........Crombie overcoats with red silk hankie....stay press trousers...Harrington jackets in black blue or green....with plaid lining......levi jeans..turned up...high top martins....loafers....braces.....brutus shirts....fred perry shirts....two tone mohair suits trousers......razor parting in the hair! Used to parties in Hackney at my west indian mates houses....all the reggae stuff was played on records with no label.....went to a massive concert in Vicky Park in 1970.....all sorts of fashions about then! Bought a Ben Sherman shirt recently her in oz...not impressed with the quality......" Stevenqoz 29/09/2010

"In East London the main place to buy your Doc Martins, Brogues and Loafers was at Blackmans shop down Brick Lane.....it's interesting to here Steve talk about what we could afford...there certainly a few kids who had Harringtons in every colour Blue, Black, Beige etc....many of our crowd eventually got into jungle greens and a shiny american style jacket which was slightly padded....levis were 5 pound a pair back then" Stevenqoz 30/09/2010

"In north east england the skinhead trend seemed to hang around a lot longer than most areas. there was still a lot of skins about in 72...73..from what i read on here i am the only one from this area on this site. i can remember been one of the first to change my crombie for a leather coat almost same design minus top pocket.was this the same down south .still wore ben sherman or fred perry levis or sta prest loafers.lead the skinhead trend from 70 to 73 in guisborough cleveland best days of my life.SKINHEADS LIFE WOULD NEVER BE THE SAME......ALBO." 70tezskin albo 05/10/2010

"Haha, great nostalgic site. I was a mini-skin the first time round. Prince of Wales check Harrington jacket, stone Sta-Prest and monkee boots. They didn't do DMs in small sizes in those days. My mum took me down Petticoat Lane and the old jewish salesman told us "these are the latest thing". Just like the scene in 'This is England'!

Brutus shirts came along after Ben Shermans. I had an imitation Crombie (my best mate had a real one). Solatio shoes with the basket tops and loads of blakeys. Standing on the old North Bank at Upton Park!

The later revival skinhead stuff was not the same at all. Most of them were very scruffy and I hated those really high DMs. And all the Nazi/Nationalism stuff really killed it." Andy 06/10/2010

"What about Trevira suits? We ladies (I was a girl then), wore Trevira suits. I pestered my Mum for ages to get one - Petrol Blue. It was wonderful. Does nobody else remember these? All skinhead girls in Brighton wore Trevira. Can't find them on the net." Samurai Penny 09/10/2010

"The hard mod and skinhead looks are timeless and sharp as a tack. They took lots of elements from the American Ivy League look, but gave it a British working-class twist.

Good call mentioning John Simons, Christina. Button-down shirts were brought to the UK from the States by John Simons and sold at his shops. Soon Ben Sherman and many others jumped on the bandwagon and started making their own.

John Simons is actually in the process of designing a whole new range of clothes based on those original Ivy League and Modernist styles that he first introduced to the UK. He will be selling them via his new shop and website along with other classic items like loafers and knitwear.

Great news for skins and mods alike!" Paul 13/10/2010

" There are still a lot of skinheads in Sunderland and a few in Hartlepool too. They are around but not as prolific as they used to be. We had one at the university we were attending so they are not all thick. I used to be one but a bit of a fey one at that. I still wear Ben Shermans and Wrangler jackets on occasions but dare I don the boots and turn up the jeans a bit one more time for the hell of it or would I look stupid at 42 years of age, although not fey these days and a good strong build to go with it,lol." Scotty 15/10/2010

"Samurai Penny !
YESSSS in 1970 I had a trevira suit. Remember the covered buttons all down the front of the jackets ? Were we "tailored" or what - haha ! I was a Saturday girl in Sainsbury's in Feltham High Street ( no longer there of course ) and I saved every single penny I earned to get that little suit.
Does anyone remember the Skirt 'n Slack centre in Hounslow ? Myself, Sally Mansell and Sandra Weighill ( still great friends, 40 years down the road ) used to buy their front - box - pleat - way - past - the - knee skirts, too. My goodness, we thought we were delicious in 1970 !!!!" christina mccarthy 15/10/2010

"I was a Skinhead in 1969 as a 15 year old. Progressed into a suedehead (media invention as was Skinhead) Wore all the gear. Saved up for over a year to get my first suit made at Burtons,green and gold tonic mohair. I loved that suit. Brutus or jaytex shirts preffered over Bennies as the checks were better. Used to go to The Salon in Northampton. Then onto the coffee bar across the street. Football was always interesting. The girls were the cutest ever with the feathercut and the tonic skirts with brutus shirts.
Im still a Skinhead and attend reggae dos all over the country. There is still a very big scene out there. Check out ukskinheads.co.uk
Best skinhead site around with no politics tolerated at all." Steve 15/10/2010

"Hi Julie:
I think I know you from Locarno and Top Rank clubs back then in Bristol,England. Locarno was wicked. Were you one of the dancers on stage? We used to Jam. Yeah I am in my 50's now been in US for over 30 years. God time does fly. Yeah used to wear the tonic suits with purple flares...zip out. St Paul's Bristol, original rude boy. Yeah it was cool. No race thing, it was just all of us getting together and jamming..."Dancing in the street." Julie Locarno was wicked ...huge club and great complex. England I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for who I am today. Skinheads, mods, rockers...One Love, One Heart. Hey,if anyone reads this and can contact Julie it would be great. Nuff Respect...Original Rude Bwoy, Bristol England...London UK...Sir Coxsone Downbeat...Worldwide defender of truth and justice. Big up...Julie Bristol, England. England...thank you, thank you. Burning Spear.Respect to all original Rude Bwoys...From Town to Bamboo Club to Blues. Big Up" jusme 24/10/2010

"As a young babe I danced to my boy lollipop and later found Max Romeo "Wet Dream " and Dandy Livingstone "Suzane beware of the devil".Now in 2010 Im 47 and wear crombie and sheepskin and doc martins and clarks crepe sole shoes.Primark is good for check shirts.RIP Gregory Isaacs and keep the original Skinheads burning." johnny hoodoo 26/10/2010

At 42 and a 1/2, I still don the boots and turn up the jeans. It`s about the spirit and keeping the faith alive. At least we were smart, had jeans pulled up, shirts tucked in, polished boots/ brogues or loafers.
I regularly attend ska nights around London and the South East and still dream about a massive 2 Tone revival... :-)

Not all of us were scruffy, I took a pride in the style. Everything had to be right, from the colour of socks to the hankie in the top pocket. But, I agree the nazi stuff hurt the culture." spiritof69 06/11/2010

"There are plenty of online shops selling quality skinhead gear, I found this one www.skinhead-world.com prices are good as well.

Have been trying to get sta prest in fatboy sizes as the waist line has expanded with age but aint found any yet" ted 12/11/2010

"Hi JusMe - Bristol boy myself, terraces my home on a Saturday afternoon, Top Rank and Locarno dancefloor on the evenings - remember 'John Crow Skank' by Derrick Morgan and 'Life is down in Denver' by Jo Gibbs, they always played them at the Locarno - guess you're all fed up with me banging on about my book but it's about mods/skinheads/suedeheads/smoothies/boot boys/soulboys/punks in Bristol in the 70s, think you'll enjoy it. PS Don't forget RCA Records in Picton Street!" Chris Brown (Booted and suited) 16/11/2010

"hi ted have you tried warrior clothing or merc ?" denzilpc 17/11/2010

"i am black, can i still be a skinhead?" ugabi 29/11/2010

"hi ugabi dont see why not colour has nothing to do with being a skinhead its you attitude, the way you dress,& music,its a way of life!!!!!!!plenty of black skinheads back in the day" denzilpc 29/11/2010

"The opening of this article suggests skinhead fashion was a uniform and had no individuality. I can't aree with the last point. Me and my mates went out of our way not to have clothes that matched. For sure we may all were a 'button-down' but woe betide anyone who though about buying the same colour or check. Same go with Harringtons. We all had different colours I even remember sitting in a mates front room when we all decided which one to get. One of the guys bought a brown one, sick! Mine was turquoise and there is a photo knocking around some where with me in it complemented with white 2 button Fred Perry and Tan Gibsons. Other shirts worn were Ivy League, Careers Club and Arnold Palmers. Harringtons by SkyJump (not Ski Jump)were bought from Milletts. Who also sold 501's.
Shoes from the Squire Shop in Brewer Street.

My first made-to-measure mohair suit was in Lovat Green made by Burton and worn in '68 for cousin's wedding. I then remeber having my last family holiday in Gt Yarmouth and wearing the suit there. I had no idea there was a skin gathering but suddenly felt I belonged, much to the shagine of my elder hippy sister." CLK 02/12/2010

"I'm gonna get a bit soppy now, so all you boys betta close your eyes !
Do any of you skinhead girls remember
" Leaving Rome " by Jo Jo Bennett and the Mudies and " It's all in the game " by the Four Tops ?
They were the two BIG slow dance songs in my era ( 1969 - 1971 ) and I used to look around that dance floor at all those boys suited up and think that inside those hardman images there were nice lads in there somewhere ! EVERYONE went soft when those two tunes came on and snuggled up together with the girls. Any excuse, huh ?
Kenny Lampard - WHERE ARE YOU NOW ?? HAHA." christina mccarthy 10/12/2010

"Hey Christina,

Yeah! I can remebemer all those old slow ones - still play em! My wife uses "Leaving Rome" as her mobile ring tone!

... and yes Walton Hop, Castle (later Cheeky Pete's) in Richmond were all part of my old stomping ground in the late 60's.

Do you remember the Addlestone Co-op, or the Gallyeon and the Riverside at Chertsey - and what about the Atalanta at Woking - a regular haunt for me?" Clive 10/01/2011

"Clive !!! Thank god you responded to this - I thought I had killed the page for good ! Your wife uses Leaving Rome on her mobile ?? SUPERB !!!
Yes I remember the Walton Hop very well.
I also used to go the Castle Ballrooms every Tuesday night, before Cheekee Pete's was actually built. The bouncers took us through there when it was being constructed to show us where the " new disco " was gonna be. Once it opened they renamed the ballrooms " Brollies " - it wasn't the same though ( I must be getting OLD to say that haha ).
My husband was a Stanwell Moor boy and I first met him in the Galleon at Chertsey. We used to go there on a Sunday night first and then onto the Riverside which was originally called
" Chertsey Lock " in those early days.
Did you ever go to the Windsor Safari Park discos ? - they were great. 3 or 4 different rooms playing totally different music - Saturday nights - LOVED it !!! In the summer you could sit outside on the bank looking over the big lawns - what a place. I was gutted when they closed it all down. Good memories, a?" christina mccarthy 11/01/2011

"hey christina i remember windsor safari park discos well as i only lived down the road from there!loads of us from windsor always went, also used to go to discos at a pub in old windsor whoes name i foget at the moment ( old age setting in)" denzilpc 11/01/2011

"Hallo denzilpc - it's probably been turned into the Toby Carvery now - ouch !" christina 12/01/2011

"i loved them days being a skinhead then suedehead in swindon in early 70s still wear the gear today we never grow up do we, also still ride around on my lambretta. i remember getting my first crombie from burtons it had hand stitching around the collar and also getting a green mohair 2 pce suit from there used to strut around thinking you were the dogs ........ also my old mum bought me a pair of proper royals cost 7 pound and 7 shillings as some of my school mates had the imitation ones from easifit that cost around 3 pounds. good times may it never die." Dave Browne 17/01/2011

"Young skin at 18 wearing the classic crombie, stapress, sheepskin, harringtons, monkey jackets, brogue shoes oxfords toe capp's, tonic strides and suits with ticket pockets centre vent etc, loafers, highly polished dm's jeans with turn ups, donkey jackets, vintage Button downs, shermans, brutus ..etc.. Love the music, love the scene, love the history. Love culture.

"Just bought some plain caps and brogues from direct shoe sales and a barracuta harrington from lizard in Richmond. The Castle(cheeky petes and brollys) were where we hung out in the early 70's and we got our clothes from the ivy shop in richmond. There were some real battles outside the castle, people used to come to richmond from all over london, what great days !!" Lawrence Brimicombe 20/01/2011

"The skinhead moonstomp album had Blackpool boys on the cover for sure. A couple of the guys I can name Roy Ashworth (far left) and my mates older brother Ian ? Cook (far right)" BOB A 23/01/2011

"Bob A !!!
I am slowly getting nearer to the truth - I only found out through this page that these were Blackpool boys ( many entries ago ) - and now I know after 40 years that my favourite one of all is called IAN !!!!
Thank you so much for that !
Christina." christina mccarthy 24/01/2011

"Man this makes me happy to have found this site especialy being a yank. I love the 60, 70's skinhead style for me it has to be the best . Mind you I'm only 25 but who cares. I'm just glad to have found younger people around my age as well as the older original generation still enjoying this stuff. I'm glad I became a Skin. It was the best choice i ever made plus the woma love the Smart look." Brandon Cipelle 13/02/2011

"@ Hills, I too went to the Ilford Palais on Saturday afternoons, do you remember the DJ would put Liquidator on and would shout out who do we support and the crowd would reply shouting West Ham!!!LOL. Brilliant times!!!" Maxine 13/02/2011

"Hi Jan
I also hung around with the Basildon skins in 1970 although I was originaly a Romford skin my girlfreind came from around Basildon, used to go up the Gun on friday nights with Johnny Anderson and a few others who's surnames I cannot remember, but with my mates from Romford we also went to the Ilford Palaise and the Lacy Lady at Seven Kings, Great days. Kev" KEV 22/02/2011

"Hello Lawrence.
We also got in the Bull Richmond and the Boathouse in Kew in 69.
Yes also got my cloths in the Ivy and Squire shop.
Three years ago i found their is a current Skinhead scene, With many Original Skinheads attending Doos all over the UK.

Roy 23/02/11" Roy 23/02/2011

"Hello Roy,
I also remember the Bull and the Boathouse, we also used to go to the Hammersmith Palais, Twickenham Birds Nest and Clarence in Teddington..... happy days" Lawrence 01/03/2011

"Hello Roy,
I also remember that we also used to go to the Hammersmith Palais, Twickenham Birds Nest and Clarence in Teddington..... happy days" Lawrence 01/03/2011

"I was a skin in hartlepool from about 1970/71 check shirts, DMs,striped ,braces and tanktop pullover had to beg parents for the clothes which i got for birthdays and xmas. i was 11 at time got paper round to buy own best times best music." Wilky 01/03/2011

"Just downloaded Toots and the Maytals greatest hits brought back loads of memories of nights at the youth club.Dancing with your mates to the great Reggae tunes. Love the site, Im now 51 and still wear check shirts and DMS though overweight to wear tight jeans." Wilky 03/03/2011

"please can you or anybody tell me if there is any skinhead conventions or reunions this year.in the kent area. many thanks....graham." graham campion 04/04/2011

"Big SKA Festival in folkstone sept 2/3/4 loads of skinheads brilliant time was had by all last year.this year looks even bigger." denzilpc 06/04/2011

"Hi Graham,

Their are Skinhead Doos all over the UK every week, Their are many Skinheads around the Medway.
Check out UK Skinheads web site, for events.
Roy" Roy 09/04/2011

"Just signed up to uk skinheads web site. Excellent site with loads of information on skinhead events." Wilky 15/04/2011

"The comments are as interesting as the article. A number of people who were skinheads in the late 1960s (myself included) are compiling a book specifically about our experiences and the fashion of that era. We would like to hear from anyone who was around at the time, if you would like to contribute to the book. We're especially looking for photos. Please contact Bookseeker Agency, P O Box 7535, Perth, PH2 1AF, Scotland. Thanks." Paul Thompson 26/05/2011

"i can recomend 2TONE CENTRAL in coventry they have gigs on throughout the year check out the website 2 tone central," denzilpc 02/06/2011

"being a 27-yrs-old skinhead from germany I can tell you that there's still loads of people being skinhead and try to dress the "original" way. Just go to a reggae- or soul-allnighter and you'll see a lot of skins dressed the same way as back in the late 60s or early 70s... and hey, we still listen to the same music, maybe the skinhead-subculture is a bit "backward-looking"" he mo 16/09/2011

"Just found this site by chance. Like your correspondent Chris Brown I was a Bristol Rovers tote end lad and was into all the skinhead fashions of the day - and still kind of dress like it now. Doc Martens and sometimes 'monkey boots' were important and later on re-soled 'royals' brogues and then loafers. Sta- press were great trousers as were the Ben shermans and yes the Brutus shirts and Fred Perrys. The early classic look was tan DMs, white sta-press and a Levi jacket with check Ben Sherman and braces - sometimes left loose.

I remember one game at Eastville where there were thousands of supporters in black Brutus shirts, black sta-press, black harringtons and black rogues -sounds fascistic but it wasn't as it was not a racist movement!

By the way I can vouch for much of the content of Chris Brown's book because I was at many of the events and adventures described. If only I could find a sleeveless fair isle jumper!!" Brian 15/10/2011

"just found this link.The Atalanta Woking late 60's early 70's. Guildford Plaza,Cinderellas, Chertsey lock/Pantiles Bagshot,Windsor Safari Park, smart clothes, Ivy shop Richmond. Such great memories, trouble is still wearing the same style clothes as do many of my friends If you live in the Surrey area check out The Skasouls" AT and T 17/10/2011

"i loved the skinhead days still have the crombie and ben shermens im 53 now and by god when i look back at how smart we looked ,i loved the music still do the next reunion in brighton i will be there if anyone on here has the dates let us no cheers" brian r 05/11/2011

"does anybody know where too buy the original brogous from" big steve 12/02/2012

"Anyone know what's happened to the UK skinheads site?" Chris Brown 19/02/2012

"Chris its now Skinheadsuk.proboards.com.

Roy" Roy 03/03/2012

"The Boat House Kew Reggae City Wimbledon Battersea Town Hall And the Croyden Suite the Swan Crystal Palace there were a load of us from Battersea used to go to these places what a buzz the Girls were great and we were the Mutts Nuts Happy days great memories Still Wearing the Smooths and Royals cant beat em and the Music still gets me Going Motown Reggae and Soul it just will not go away Loving it" george bailey 25/03/2012

"Just come back from Belarus and met an ex skinhead in the city centre. He spoke perfect English and said it was great to see an England skin with the all the gear. I'm pleased to say that he said there is a big skinhead following in Russia, Belarus and the Ukraine and they lean toward the Trojan side of the scene with a liking for the Ska and Blue Beat etc." Scotty 26/03/2012

"As a 2nd wave Skinhead me and most of my pals tried to emulate the 1st wave's Dress code ..even though our music of choice was oi! (Street Punk )we dressed smart ! Most of the original labels ..Jaytex ,brutus trimfit shirts ,Stay press strides ect were still available and if you couldnt find it new hit a charity shop for a find !Blackmans shoe shop on Cheshire st for proper English brogues& smooths ,and then "The Last Resort " Shop on goulston street for Harringtons ,braces MA1 bomber jackets ...Does any one know when the Ma1 Bomber jackets were first worn ..first time or second ?I dont think the Nationalist Scene Killed The scene ..Skinheads killed skinhead imho ,but i have to say they were the best 10years of my life !" Late 70's Skinhead 27/03/2012

"A skin from 1968. we aspired to dress well but it was a case of buying copies such as Brutus and knock -off Gibsons from Brick Lane. With my first week's wages(early 1971) i bought a pair of tounge and tassle loafers from the Ivy shop in Richmond.8-9 quid. by this time skinheads were definitely on the way out.the kids who kept it going in the 70s amissed the point because originally it was an evolving movement." john green 30/04/2012

"proud to have been an original Leicester Townie skin. All the leicester lads went for the smart look, wouldn't be seen dead in donkey jackets and boots. Nobody had shaved heads, that was just a look invented later on. Ben Shermans, Brutus, Sta-prest, harringtons, sleeveless jumpers, loafers with a double sole, blazers with the city crest, silk hankies held in place with a tie pin, crombies, sheepskins, made to measure suits and black or grey trilby. that was a real skinhead. did all our shopping in silver street. dancing all weekend at the palais.the skin girls in there patterned tigths and tonic suits were the best. Hate how the racists hijacked our culture later on,no real skin would dress as scruffy as them. we all loved black music, tamla, stax, bluebeat, and loads of the west indian lads were skins. a grandad now but it was the best time of my life meeting my future wife who was also a skin at the Fantasia nightclub in Quorn." Taylor 23/062012 23/06/2012

"Wow this site has had me reminissing tonight, as a 15 year old I was into the skinhead look. I had a Saturday job working at Dri Pak a salt factory on the production line packing salt into boxes and gluing the boxes together (yuk) all for 5 pounds for a mornings work, I would save this money until I had enough to buy an item of clothing. Off I would go to a shop in Hockley in Nottingham called Jeffs I remember it being an Aladins Cave full skinhead gear. Also birthday and christmas money would be saved to buy either clothing or the latest single of that week. My clothing range consisted of brutus trousers, ruperts, ben sherman shirts, monkey boots with red laces and a crombie coat always with a hankie in the pocket and a stud to keep it in place. Had a pair of loafers and would get my Dad to bang in the blakeys in the heels so I could be heard on the pavements. My hair was cut in a long feather cut. As I got a bit older nights out where spent either at the Palais in Nottingham with revolving dance floor or Ilkeston Co-op Regency Rooms both good places to go. Now 54 and I still like the occasional night out with my girl mates at the local northern soul night but alas the skinhead gear has long gone but the memories last forever." Diane Brown 28/07/2012

i remember the boys from the co-op,mutley jib dave c and all the others.mad old days.
Jay" jay 16/09/2012

"Cropped hair dyed raven black - career club b/d shirts-Dormeuil 3pc Tonik suits m/measure from Berwick St W1 with 15i n centre vents and wouldnt be seen dead without a pair of 'Royals'on our feet.Typical Sat night - Trade- Tiles- Student Prince-Coffee Pot all in W1 and then on to The Penthouse/Peyton Place in Bromley to listen to Neville the Enchanter playing Marching off to War/Right Track/Love makes the WGR/Shanty Town Instrumental Soul Bros/Walking up one way street . Oh the list goes on !!!
Sunday morning down the lane chawing 45 imports and back home to suffer heinious comedowns in the Essoldo.
Anyone remember ??????" Ted 30/09/2012

"Read suited and booted recently. I,m a skin from the 60s. The book brought back some happy memories for me. I,m a good friend of Chelsea Tina mentioned the book. Back in wearing the clobber from that era." Marsh 08/10/2012

"Cristina McCarthy are you still on here" dicky dawson 09/10/2012

"Greatly enjoyed reading all these memories, those of you after a well-dressed evening of top sounds with a friendly crowd of Mods & Skins then get yourself's down to Club Rude at "Milk" in Reading (Berks) December 20" Fenton 31/10/2012

"pair of DMs (high legged ) Levis and a Fred perry ..off to the fair in the 70s!! Do you remember the music ska ,reg and a touch of northern soul ...we were lucky to of lived and enjoyed it.good times." Jonny 01/11/2012

"Stumbled on this site trying to find if my old scooter is still alive.me and all my mates were skinheads in the late 60's. a lot of the venues mentioned have bought back memories. The Boat house , Cheeky Petes , the Croyden Suit , The Purley Orchid .Does any one remember the foresters hall Epsom or the South 20 Club in Cheam . The Blusette club in Leatherhead was my first introduction into Ska And Bluebeat and the best Youth Club in South East England In Bookham !! Desmond Decker ,the Pioneers and the Upsetters all Played live There . Levi's , Cherry Reds,Ben Shermans and Brutus all bought from Sid off Epsom Market. On a Saturday Morning. Then it was off to Burtons to pay our 5 bob a week for our mohair suits. No 3 with a razor parting was the haircut and black plain caps or Loafers from the Ivy Shop in Richmond !!!! The memories go on and on" Stewart Livingston 04/11/2012

"The good times and ska inflence resonated within the two tone period. And a subject forgotten was the skins against fascism, and anl, I still remember as a two tone rude boy, getting it very wrong, in Edinburgh. My two friends Andy and Tanzy, were good enough to show me this." Ray Scappaticcio 14/01/2013

"Amazing to read all these comments! So many people on here have posted about the places I used to go. I remember The Birds Nest and Henekeys in Twickenham. Chertsey Lock, the Galleon and Pantiles too. There were so many great places to go to listen and dance to the brilliant music of the time. In the early 70's I belonged to a number of clubs, and would turn up in my cromby coat, tonic skirt, ben sherman shirts and cropped and feathered hair smelling of Brut - my Mum and Dad were not impressed - lol - but I just loved it! Now I'm in my fifties and listen to smooth 70's - brings back so many good memories :)" Tisha 17/01/2013

"Just found your site.FANTASTIC to read.What memories it brings back.Like Purley Orchid and the club in Streatham [an,t remember the name[.My two tone tonic suit.BenSherman orange check shirt.Brogues or my Doc Martins.pretty classy for a girl.The music was great and we had so much fun.I lived in Redhill Surrey.anyone remember the chip shop [my dads and The Queens pub.Get intouch if you do.I was Sue Brown then and lived in Batts Hill." Sue Johnson 24/02/2013

"Just come across this site.What a lot of great memories.The clothing was class,Ben Shermans, Fred Perry,Levi 501s & Sta-Prest,Royals(brogues)and DMs all style icons.Saturday nights out called for a suit I had a three piece brown fine herring bone (Burtons made to measure)centre vent three slope pockets,or a Prince of Wales check jacket with black Sta Prest.In Brighton it was the Top Rank suite or Sherries,after a selection of pubs for a swifty before the dance hall,Pickwick,Harrisons on The Queen Anne were the most popular.Really loud Motown,Soul and Reggae/Ska/Blue beat still listen to it now,Pressure Drop is still the most evocative tune for me personally,really takes me back.
Bank Holidays in Brighton were really something,massive influxe of like minded people,mostly good results,occasionally a bit sparky.Always fun of some sort to be had,especially August 70, a large contingiant of a Ted revival from the Black Raven in London arrived, lively!
Parkas worn on your scooter(TV 175 series 2)
kept your threads clean.But the dance halls were the best,the music,the over-powering smell of Brut,and talent scouting,Watneys Red Barrel,good good times!" Alan Leeves Bton 28/02/2013

"One more brief question,does anyone else remember the term "Peanut" to refer to skins/suedeheads.Not sure if it was a local thing,maybe soutern or whether it was in national use,rarely see it written on this type of site.Also how did I forget the crombie,pocket hankie point folded down with a tie stud through it." Alan Leeves Bton 02/03/2013

"The first time I recall the term "peanut head " was about 1968-1969 and was a derogatory term for skinheads used by Bikers. It may have been a southern term but if my memory is correct and it's not always ! it may of come from the tabloids of the time ..they invented a lot of derogatory names for us." Stewart Livingston 11/03/2013

"I loved being a skinhead we had a great crew in Coventry called"Manfield Boys" around 30/40 of us and what a very tasty loads of lads who loved a bit of aggro down the town. And the football .

BOOT BOY" Boot boy 14/03/2013

"Cheers Stewart,Glad it wasnt a figment of my imagination,we had quite a few derogatory names for them too.They were a scruffy bunch!Very few motor bikes between them from what I remember,used to bump into quite a few "Hells Angels"(wannabes)on the bus,usually made us laugh,and they use to get off at the next stop(sometimes before)!" Alan Leeves Bton 20/03/2013

"Top Ranks - Watford - Reading - Croydon - The Locarno (where was that?) - The Californian Dunstable. We used to drive iles, no breathalysers then either I don't think.
Used to wear Harringtons - Levis Sta Press and Ben Shermans, and suits form Burton. My first one cost me 20 quid. We didn't call ourselves Skinheads though, on nothin for that matter.
Used to take a 100 blues and go down to Clacton for Easter. Great stuff! I still wear a crombie, and I'd love to get a pair of Plain Caps again.
Anyone remember the Carribean music festival at Wembley Pool in 69 and 70? I saw them singin 'wreck a buddy' who were they? They were all there, laurel Aitken, Tony tribe, the pioneers, Max romeo. Man o man I turned 60 last year...... Do a number two now with me own shaver .:)" Terry 20/04/2013

"Hi Terry,Wreck a Buddy was by the Soul Sisters,you will find it on the "Tighten Up" Trojan box set of 3 CDs.Just been playing the set in the car,something to do with the sun making its long awaited return.Take it easy with the shaver!Now wher did I leave my Polaroid Sportsmans?" Alan Leeves Bton 01/05/2013

"Hi Alan. Yea I've got all of the Trojan stuff from those years, an I've gone down to a numbe one now with the razor :)

I can't believe i used to go to Clacton, Brighton and Bournmouth at Easter and sleep on the beach. With the weather lately I can't see how we ever did that!
Hi Julie. Yea where did those years go? It seems to be getting faster too!
I've been through quite a lot of changes in my life n I'm a grandad now. So when I'm walking about feeling a bit old I remember those years and I always seems to stand up a bit straighter and feel a bit better. You're only as old as you feel - it's true.

Where can I get a decent button down Ben Sherman. I went into the Ben Sherman shop in Covent Garden and didn't like none of it!
And another thing - I lent a record to a girl in Croydon in 1969 - 'it's your thing' by the Isley brothers. She never did give me it back!" terry 16/05/2013

"Hi Tel,A number one!lets hope the rain stops soon.As for lending records that never came back,that seemed to be the "party fee" I dont think I ever came home with all of the records that I went with(did sometimes gain one or two)so "swings & roundabouts".Seem to get my Ben Shermans off club books,cant get slimfit ones though,but that doesnt seem to matter much,not as slimfit as I used to be!The ones in TK Max are rubbish and at least 5xl,Ive got a long way to go before I get anywhere near that,dont really have any intention of going there." Alan Leeves Bton 22/05/2013

"Julie. If you we're a Guildford girl me and my mate used to go to a club in Guildford called Dronfields The entrance was opposite Debanhams do you remember it ??" Stewart 29/05/2013

"So many memories of great days, remember
the last dance always leaving Rome or I'll Be There, wonderful times." rosie 29/05/2013

"Did any of you go to the Cats Whiskas in Streatham , or Green Dragon in South Croydon or Top Rank suite croydon, or Orchid Purley? this would be around 1971-2?" rosie 03/06/2013

"Hi Rosie, yes occasionally used to go to the Cats Whiskers, being a Brighton boy it sometimes got a little tricky,but mostly had a great time.Used to go to the Starlight in Creepy Crawley as well,mostly the Suite in Brighton and Sherrys,there were some smaller venues in B'ton,Markwells(basement Queens hotel),Paliase Rooms and the In Place and Harrisons Bar, on the seafront.Still play the music alot at home,in the car,also used to go to the Soul Survivors evenings at Hove Dog Track function rooms,hope to go again in the not too distant future,shut your eyes,and you are back in the day,minus the over powering smell of Brut,and no Watneys Red Barrel at the bar...but you cant have it all..its close though!" Alan Leeves Bton 15/06/2013

"All you guys should take a look on Facebook and look for gigs and interest groups, there's a huge skinhead scene going on around the world.

I was a skinhead back in 1970 - 1973 and over the years thought it had died out, but got to know the guys from the Oppressed and started getting back into the scene and it's great :) I'm 57 now and having a great time going to Oi! and Ska gigs and dressing in the old style, best fun I've had for years" Paul 21/06/2013

"Dicky I'm still on here but only if you spell my name right ! haha
I would ahve been back earlier but ive had murders getting past the password !" CHRISTINA MCCARTHY 08/07/2013

"Dicky Dawson, yes I'm back on here again - I got tied up with other stuff for a while. I love reading everyone's memories from the late 60s/early 70s; why did that fashion die out so fast ?! 2 years max and everyone was doing something else, even with the hair. The big skinhead revival in the 80s didn't quite match it - for me anyway. I've seen the SkaSouls - a G R E A T talent, it's the nearest I can get in our area to the original SKA beat." CHRISTINA MCCARTHY 08/07/2013

"PS I just found myself a pair of size 5 cherry red Dr Martens in my local Oxfam, with the black and yellow laces and Dr. Martens tag on the back of the boot and the bit on the bottoms that says they are oil resistant. Originalssssssss !!!!!! The newer versions don't all have this. When I look on line the ones made abroad nowadays are so expensive I can't believe I got these for a tenner; I'd LOVE to know how old they are ( toe cap is cracked, but who cares ?! )" CHRISTINA MCCARTHY 08/07/2013

"Love this site.....just found it, god the memories it brings back. North Shields still has a lot of traditional skins and have a reunion every year at the Park Hotel Tynemouth. 54 this year and still got the Levi's, Harrington, Docs, loafers, Fred Perry and the Ben Sherman shirts....struggling to find new thin braces though.....any suggestions giz a shout" Johnnie Mc 29/07/2013

"Blimey, where have you all been, haven't you heard of the Skinhead reunion in Brighton every year....next one is June 2014....look on Subcultz for more info." tom noble 02/10/2013

"love all the comments born it dec 1950 in barking essex just missed the real mods (mates brother was real mod drove a vespa gs).Had a number 1 at 16 school was horrified wore ben shermans,levi,s sabre v necks dm,s.We cause havoc at the youth club happy days.
Then it was on to smart trousers squires loafers ,braces,lambswool cardigans ,3 ply tonic suits ...saturday nights at the apple and pears ,hospital tavern ,the upper cut club ...does anybody remember the lotus in forest gate...We had a tear up one bank holiday in southend....happy days" peter 05/11/2013

"I can recall being called a 'bone head' in my skinhead days.....another derisary comment made by greasers and along the lines of the 'peanut head'comments.Those biker types were never very articulate were they!!! lol. Johnny B. from Suffolk." John Balfour 27/02/2014

"Has anyone on here been to Skamouth before? I'm contemplating going this year, as someone in my family has a caravan down that way. Also, is anyone on here from Yorkshire/Nottinghamshire area?" David 06/03/2014

"ah memories. The music.Dave and Ansell Collins, Elizabethan Reggae,Willism Tell, Return of Django. My boyfriend is still a top dancer now! used to go to bluebeat parties in Brixton - mamas taught him footwork! used to have to buy tinnies on door.
I had feather cut - first girl in area to go to greek barbers and have 1/4 inch cut in parting - regret plucking eyebrows so thin though! Wore bennys - expensive though,black and white small check, Fly front mac from Lewisham. Went to Savoy Catford on Sunday - Steve Maxted. Croydon Suite, Purley Orchid, Dutch House, Room at the Top - Ilford. Sitting in bath in brand new levis so they fitted, then dried and put bleach over them - remember sitting on bus to meet friend and they weren't even dry! Buying long cardigans with cable and pockets and after tonic/mohair skirts, getting any unusual check skits with short french jumpers in matching colours at Scotties in Brixton.Tights with patterns down side of leg and Ravel loathers. Black tights with canary yellow 'Quant' socks. Fairgrounds with music blaring out. Packing into train and going to Southend. Still love the music - still play it. x" carol 24/03/2014

"The guys on the Moonstomp Album cover were from Blackpool and the one standing on the left is Roy (Tash) Ashworth. These guys were into Northern Soul and still are today. Roy is still about." Chas King 19/05/2014

"Love this site, born in '58 used to spend all my paperound money on Ben's and sta prest.
Best shoeshop was Toppers in King's rd, couldn't afford those so bought knock-off's from an Elderly Jewish stallholder in Briton market. Attended a rally in London, Piccadilly to be exact, I was 12 at the time, parents thought that me and Danny,a schoolfriend and fellow skin were watching General Patton at the Granada, Clapham Junction.
Had a pair of OXBLOOD DM's and braces, couldn't afford too much more.
Sorry for self indulgent rant, and by the way..love this site. Paul" Trunds 06/06/2014

"What a great site --
Lots to add but all said somewhere above..
I have just found basket weave solatio shoes on the net and waiting for my size to come in . As a kid i remember bringing back a pile of solatio basket weaves from Ipswich (I Think) for the lads on the train.
Lotus golf shoes with the studs removed and the fancy fringe bit. Rupert bear trousers. i had a prince of Wales suit made at Burton's --with brown loafers and a White Ben sherman it was immaculate.
Remember Slazenger cardigans?
My amazing Black mate and me (skinheads were not racist as is portrayed now) always had the best - I remember him and me buying proper top end crombies from his mums catalogue (remember catalogues). We looked the muts nuts and put lots of business money earners to shame. Loved the era.. I still wear button downs in Oxford weave, twin vent suits with brogues and a crombie for winter --
oh jee just remembered --what about when a Clockwork Orange (the film) came on the cinema? we all started carrying brolleys and walking sticks.... and talked about droogies.

My daughter reckons I am going through a second childhood -- if this is altzheimers then bring it on -- a joyful time and wish I could go back for a day --and get the fully pleated Ben Shermans to fit skin tight as they did then --LOL
chris" chris from Norfolk 27/10/2014

"what a great site this is..only came accross it cus my Sis sent me some you tube vids.wat a pleasant strole down memory lane,was a Trojan skin in 1972..loved the whole music and cloathes thing,my old man hated it,allways telling me to get that jungle bunny crap off,have still got a large colection of Trojan music.my sister said it was me that got her into Regga long may this site go on.ROB from Aston,Birmingham" robert goode 30/10/2014

"Brings back memories this site,became a skinhead around 1978,as people say good clean look,smart.levi 501s with half inch turn ups sometimes bleached,sta press trousers,dog tooth or prince of Wales check trousers,waffle cardigans,Brutus button downs along with ben sherman.fred perry tank tops and braces,fred perry polo shirts,dms or bootlegger steel toe caps boots with yellow laces and officers which were tan boots with a stitched line across the toe or dealer boots,and not forgetting brogues and to top it all the Crombie.
All this with a number 3 crew cut think it was around a 1/4 of an inch.
Was good times,going over west ham was a buzz didn't now if it was going to kick off,couple of night clubs we used to go to,albermarle youth club and the medway,first one had a bar in it,my first experience of being hammered ha,someone tried sobering me up,shoved me head down toilet and pulled the chain hehe.came out albermarle and 100 yards up the road a big green and guaranteed there were coppers ready for an argument waiting,they loved nothing more than a punch up on the green with us skinheads,good to read your site brings back lots of mixed memories,well I'm I'm 50 now and still wearing the clothes mentioned bit harder to get hold of now but keep this smart look going people." Mark from Harold hill 2/1/15 02/01/2015

"love the comments I was a skinhead in luton in 1968 had all the gear most of us bought from jays in the market in the arndale centre we hadour battles with others in the football but I have to say we had some great times after all the bad press they never gave us good press about the good things we did we didn't mug old people or set fire to schools or houses .as skinheads we was searched everytime we got on a bus at football .we was at brighton football ground and the old bill made all of us take our boots off it was fun after the match try find your boots plus it was snowing at that match there must have been over three thousand luton skinheads it was mental I agree with some of the people lets have a reunion dress up in the gear my regards to all the boys throughout the country who were skinheads ." kenny 22/01/2015

"Great site, this is living history, 1969 15 years old and I thought i was the business, Preferred Grafter Monkey boots to D/M's and wore steel toe cap brogues that we could get from our mates who worked in Fords Halewood, Great days loved the music then and still listen to it now, still buying Ben Sherman but wear Wranglers jean still a strong make instead of Fleming made to measure. I still ride a scooter so meet lots of people who enjoyed those days, Rich 13/02/2015" Rich Jones 13/02/2015

"What a trip down memory lane for a fifty-something black London girl. Fabulous era and I fondly remember me in my tonic suit, crombi, sta prest and loafers rocking those great Trojan sounds. Anyone remember the Co-op dance hall in Catford?! Great days." Dee 29/08/2015

"Had a great late evening reading all this 60's skinhead stuff. East End boy got into music at 13' Geno Washington ( saw him last year) Eddy Grant and the Equals. Desmond Decker, Stevie Wonder. And loads more, Ilford Pala, Tottenham Royal, The Lotus (forest gate) The Upper Cut, Birds Nest Muswell a Hill amazing places. West Ham north bank till I got stabbed in the leg. Music was fantastic, dancing even better, girls second to none.

Got asked to not come back to school at 15' got a job in a Stock Brokers in The City (London for you hicks) 1968' £7.10/- a week starters and two 6 week bonuses summer and winter. Christmas 68 bought my first two tone tonic suit red and gold, loafers from The Squires Shop Brewer St in the West End, the shirts were 2 up from Ben Shermans. Then there was Blackmans just off Brick Lane for D M's and Jodhpurs £6. As I remember, Born 1953' 62 now and still wear loafers, Levi's, button down shirts.
Rode an SS180 with the Crombie coat with top pocket, bought with my Christmas bonus in 69.
Bought tonic material, prince of Wales check, dog tooth in Commercial Rd and used a tailor in Brewer St West End. Dobbs Bros, top floor over La Perla Italian restaurant. I was living the high life, now earning £13. 5/- plus bonuses.

Then early 70's got more into Led Zepplin, Hendrixs, Black Sabbath Bowie all of whom I saw live, amazing times, 73 bought a split screen VW van toured Europe on the way to Morroco and Marakesh, never quiet fitted in with the hippies but the hash was superior.

Still see loads of bands each year, from the Albert Hall to a local pub, escaped London in 1991 to the wildes of Essex, still meet up with the East End boys each Christmas. Great times great memories, still enjoying it all.
Golden." Golden 04/09/2015

"Fantastic to stumble across this site.

I remember all that has been described above, the weekly discos in the village youth club etc etc :-)

Them were the days had to laugh re the comment about DM shoes rather than the Ox blood boots, I often look to see if Doc Martens have got their act together n reproduced the original styles but alas no... The shoes of today are clumpy looking things the originals were far more 'streamlined' and much more stylish !!
But don't think anybody has mentioned Frank Wright shoes ? we all wore very plain black Frank Wrights shoes, not brogues just a plain leather soled shoes with two lace holes :-) can anybody remember them ? Wish I could buy a pair ha !!
Anyway bye for now everybody, keep smiling n remembering.
Colin Marther (Northwich Cheshire)" Colin Mather 06/09/2015

"The shoes you remember sound like Comos, we used to buy them and then stamp on them so they lost their newness, then polished them to a shine which would make a sergeant major proud, great dancing shoes, I have tried everywhere to get a pair,but never had any luck, have to make do with D/M or grafter boots, when riding my scooter, still keep looking, hope you have more luck than me if you come across a 9 or 10 let me know Rich Liverpool" Richard 09/09/2015

"Coming from Peckham way, skins were everywhere when I was a young un 69-70, all the above but nobody remembers Brixton boots , they were like a loafer without tassles, but lattice work on the tops, anyone remember these? Got mine from Blackmans back in old Brick Lane. Wore them to a Millwall home game once & everyone kept stopping me asking me where I got my shoes:)
Steve, Peckham" Steve Harris 25/09/2015

"Just came back from a weekend in Brighton haven't been there for years brought back lots of memories walking down the lanes whilst there bought some tasseled loafers wife moaned as they cost a fortune and said that i am no longer a young man but i said they never age ill be 56 next month but still like to wear gear but not tight levis as to fat." WILKY 16/12/2015

"Usedf to go to the ice rink in Billingham the next town over in early seventies had to go in group as local rivalry with their skins police used to make us take laces out of boots so could keep trouble tom a minimum if you where caught with extra laces you where escorted to the bus or arrested." WILKY 28/12/2015

"Seems like the police making you take your laces was not just a northern thing in Southport, they used to made us take off our braces,over 300 of us summer 69 on the beach, trying to look cool had to keep your hands in your pockets. started to get clever after that bit smarter dressed chino's and polo shirts and shoes instead of boots only when we went to Southport" Richard 17/01/2016

"Remember the great times at char and con clubs and Caesars in Belsize the shops for clothes squires in soho,black mans for dms In brick lane loved them times so much" Tommo 22/01/2016

"Another ex skin just stumbled onto this site too many things to say tonight but were they good times or what!!" Chris E 22/01/2016

"How fantastic reading comments from others around at the time, my local barbers would only do a number 4 crop, without a letter from your parents. This was so much shorter and neater than the other haircuts around at that time. Sandhurst had one small Taylors shop, he sold all a skinhead could need apart from boots and Frank Wright loafers. It was funny seeing a mention of the Windsor Hells angles, Camberley had the HQ for the All England chapter and Freedom for Wessex. They hung out in the Vaginian café on the A30, I remember getting chased away one day, when out on my own hoping my wing tip Royals didn't slip on the pavement.
Happy days, still love the style but my hair is shorter..." SandhurstRob55 19/02/2016

"Hoping to return to Brighton in July with the family does anyone know where i can get sta press trousers there as would like a cream or light blue pair." WILKY 05/03/2016

"Wilky - try Jump The Gun in Gardner Street Brighton - they've got the LOT !!!
They also do online if you' want to get sta press before you go !
Christina" Christina McCarthy 25/03/2016

"Thanks -Christina will look online before i go, but still look in when down there." WILKY 11/04/2016

"Got 2 pair sta press on line should have got size larger have to loose weight to fit comfy but good value classic cut" WILKY 05/05/2016

"Hi all. Wondered if anyone could help ? I'm having a 60th party in July and would love to dress as a skingirl used to wear two tone sta press trousers, crombie coat, harrington jacket, white skinner jeans , monkey boots etc. Having problems finding the items hope someone can help !!! Thanks Josie x" Josie 19/05/2016

"Hey Wilky !!
How did the diet go ? Are you proper in those sta press yet ?
Christina" Christina McCarthy 03/06/2016

"Hi Christina
Diet not to bad but take longer than thought as like my ale to much!" WILKY 09/06/2016

"My daughters moaning about my choice of music in car as i have got my original reggae and ska cds on all the time she says i should have matured by now i tell her this music has lasted longer than the crap she listens too ever will." WILKY 04/07/2016

"I used to knock around with the skins in Liverpool when i was 13 in 1969,i carried on until 76 with a break inbetweeen when i tried the royal navy it didn't last ha,any way im 60 now and just bought my self a pair of docs,ohhh the memories,my wife thinks ive gone nuts only i know ive allways been nuts haha great to read all the comments on here,good luck TRUND." trund 14/08/2016

"Going to Brighton bank holiday weekend does anyone know any pubs or clubs that play early reggae music would like to call in whilst there." WILKY 16/08/2016

"Tommo, you're talking about the Con in Finchley, and the Cha in High Barnet, right?" Helen 17/08/2016

"HiTrund 69 means your were an original skin, i was 15 the teachers at school liked the haircut at first thought it was nice an tidy,then they realized what it was and tried to ban us until it grew, Liverpool in 69 was a hard place to live, every youth club, the ice rink, the match a day out at the beach was a potential kick off joint" Rich 23/08/2016

"Hello Rich,yes i suppose i was an original as young as i was,people did like the haircuts at first until as you said they knew why we had them,i still go past where the ice rink used to be in kenny,i allways remember back in the day and when we used to get the train at exchange station to southport to fight with the greasers or greebos (hells angels)we were all mad but yhey were great days,i was from Huyton,page moss." trund 28/08/2016

"Helen yes your right love, unioni st Barnet I think was the cha and con was Finchley high rd. We use to come up from Kentish - Camden Town area probably about 69-71 .We had some good times were you there at that time if you were lets us know.Tommo" Tommo 07/09/2016

"Hi, Tommo. I lived in Highbury but we girls all used to meet at Camden Town station, and yes, it was during the years you mention! I used to go out with a boy called Stan Della from Finchley. Happy times!" Helen 20/10/2016

"watched the i am skinhead documentary on tv the other night really showed what early skinheads where about we weren't racist fascists as always shown as now" WILKY 20/10/2016

"I watched that too Wilky. The real deal was within a very short period of time, going into the later 70's/80's, a totally different world.x" Helen 28/10/2016

"Hi Helen just wondered if you new any one from Camden town? Also did go to royal in Tottenham or Lyceum ,used to play football and train at high bury fields team called flomar.n" Tommo 02/11/2016

"Just been shopping in Middlesbrough found shop selling mod and skinhead clothing as well as other fashions not bad prices crombie overcoat for £85 also sta press for £25 will have to call again." Wilky 16/12/2016

"I was the last white boy led alive out of Reggae City Wimbledon by my black mates. Shame. I just loved the music but they wanted the place for themselves.

But what a time to grow up...Reggae, Motown, Soul...Croydon Suite, clubs in Kingston and Purley.

Lambrettas, Parkas, Brut, Aramis, Tonic suits, Ox Bloods, Aubergine
Ravels.....just all so razor sharp.

Then morphing into Escorts, Cortinas, wine bars. Voile shirts, double narrow belts and built up shoes.

Ahhhhhh best time to grow up..." Nick 18/12/2016

"Remember the days down at Southend on bank holidays when the old bill would nick the laces from our Doc Martens on arrival at Southend Central" Tony 23/12/2016

"Ah iv spent an enjoyable evening reading all these reminiscences ofthe skinhead era's? I'm all nostalgia, so iv got to give you my story. I recall the skinhead scene hit Gateshead around 1969? I remember loads of the teenagers were skinheads. My older brother got into the scene. He had the "skinhead" book by Richard Allen. I read it in 1971 and was hooked. Dear Ma bought me the gear, and i got my hair cropped. I recall my brother and i wore bright coloured button down ben Sherman shirts, wrangler narrow leg jeans, also Levi sta press pants. We had cord Levi jacket's, and also Harrington jackets. I used to try and hang around with brothers mates who we're all much older 15 to 17 year olds. I can remnenber the older skinhead girls. Tho from about 1973 the fashions got out landish the hair styles longer, the original skinhead look faded. Tho even when i wore baggy pants etc, I always wore Marten boot's and yearned for the old skinhead style to return. I got my first job in 1978 aged 18. Punk was at it's height, I liked lot the new wave music, but thought the fashion daft? So getting my first wages and starting to go out Drinking, I adopted the skinhead look once again. By 1979 the mod-skinhead revival had hit. I made a few skinhead mates. My best mate Graham and I cultivated a cool skinhead look. Dead smart, and clean. Half inch hair cut. No daft halfmast trouser's, combat pants, or donkey jacket's for us? We were very dapper. Sta press pants, cream ones often had two tone too. With which we wore button down shirts, or Fred Perry's. We sore oxford shoes, tan brogues and loafers too. I also had Doc marten ox blood shoes and monkey boots. Over the years we wore all sort's. Cardigans, cream rain coats, big top coats which we purchased from charity shops. I had cord Levi jackets, suede ones the lot. We were smart cool dudes, and never short of attention from the girl's. All through the 80s and 90s we kept the scene going. We drifted apart around 1996. I was teetotal for years. Around 2000 I resumed my social life, and still wore the jeans, marten shoes and Harrington style jackets. I'm 57 next month. I hit town occasional to. On going thin km top I shaved my head years ago. To this day I'm still a smart slim fit dude. Always wear Doc Marten riding boots, check button down color shirts and Levi docker chinos. Got a 3 quarter length black leather coat if its cold and rainy. Oh and still wear Fred Perry t shirts occasions!!y. Skinhead style never really disappeared? Over the years I used to see the odd aged Skin around? We used give each other a nod. I even see my old pal Graham, he greets me with a....."oi skinhead!" :-) Keith Mc. Gateshead. 30-12-16" Keith Mc Farlane 31/12/2016

"Talking about the skinhead book by Richard Allen still have the full set from the seventies very dog eared now but read them every now and again when feeling old." Wilky 09/01/2017

"Going to Edinburgh in June does anyone know of any reggae bars or shops that do skinhead clothing." Wilky 13/03/2017

"Just found you all, what memories,I was born 55 so I went through all stages of skinhead,suade,brollieboy,a few things not seen Lee rider jeans with D/Ms and Bata shoes with stay press,those five years or so of fashion have stamped into the rest of my life,you were always aware of style be it music or clothes and since I've always dressed smart to the amusement of todays tracksuit bottomers,we were Wednesday fans so we never had red hankies in our crombies ours were blue and white(just pieces on a bit of card)held in place with a tie pin the Sheffield derbies were a bit wild in those days!,we've all many memories to share,its great remembering those days x" John 11/06/2017

"V neck slazenger jumpers,barathea blazers (we had white Yorkshire rose badge sewn on pocket,the girls with stragle cut ben sherman, tie,two tone travera jacket and trousers,and those white string tights !!" John 30/06/2017

"Back in 1970 I was at school in west London and we wore x army boots called hob nails, not a pair of martins in sight. The top thing we would be wearing for going to youth clubs was Brut aftershave, then as we hit 1971 brogues and loafers started to creep in along with button down shirts. A film about this period on t.v. was all about skinheads in London and the Football culture before and after the games featuring Arsenal and Chelsea fans. Love to know if anyone can remember what it was called.Keep on dancing to Symarip, buster,dekkerand all the great labels Pama ,Coxone,Trojan. Mark" Mark 29/07/2018

"Hi all ,
I have just ordered a Combat Harrington jacket from Ben Nevis for no other reason that they are a good all round smart casual piece of kit , but whilst ordering it led me onto various Skin culture forums . So Just thought I would put my own thoughts and memories down here of my own personal experiences 0f early 70s Skins .
I was brought up in a North East industrial town , pretty much inner city stuff and followed the Skin / Suedehead culture from around 1969 to early 70s and leaving school in 74 , ( The opposite was to be a Hairy and follow Heavy Metal music ). Up here the Skin / Suedehead culture followed Tamla Motown and Reggae music and I remember going to our local Mecca dance hall wearing green and white Ben Sherman button down and Levi two tone Sta Press strides complete with a black Barrathea jacket and topped off with either leather soled tassled brogues ( oxblood )or highly polished oxblood riding boots ( as Doc Martens were banned from the dance halls )and I thought I looked the dogs bollocks ! And the dancing , wow , if you could dance it did help to pull the girls . Trouble is a certain girl fancied me and she was a right Skin chick but weighed about 18 stone , cropped hair and full denims with tartan sewn on the back of her jacket . She was a right handful , and most of the skins were frightened of her . She would link me as we walked around the dance hall and it kept any trouble away from me , thank God when she got sick of me and latched onto someone else .Anyway used to love dancing to the sounds of Tamla Motown and whenever I hear the same songs today it brings back fantastic memories of those times . Other items of clothing I had were , black Crombie with a red satin lining and the obligatory satin handkerchief in the top breast pocket . Walking round the streets with a black brolly when the brolly boys made a brief entrance . Of course the obligatory Doc Marten boots in highly polished oxblood and the stiching painted white to highlight them . We had the usual street fights as skins were expected to do and you had to be carefull not to encroach too much on other gangs territories or a good kicking was the order of the day .
It was not long after this period that I joined the Parachute Regiment and actually got paid to be a skin thug ." Mike 23/08/2018

"1965 - 1969 - What a Period
Typical Weekend.
Down to the West End to pop in to Tiles for a luchtime soul& Ska session then on to Sam Arkus tailors to check out the latest Dormeuil tonik suit materials then on to Soul City in Monmouth St to check out the latest sounds from the States.
Finally on to Swiss Cottage to p/u 1000 dex/blues/bombers for £20.
Down the Trade Sat nights till 11.00 jump on the train up the WestEnd again to Tiles in Oxford St, The Scene in Ham Yard or to check out Count Suckle down the Roaring 20s or maybe straight up to Bromley South to the Penthouse/Peyton Place to listen to Neville the Enchanter.
On Sunday under a heinous comedown all go down 'The Lane'to chor some records and back to Watford to sneak into a cinema and crash out." Rock Steady Teddy - Watford 09/10/2019

"Did anyone on this site spend anytime at
The Citadel Dover borstal from 1967-1969?" Rock Steady Teddy - Watford 09/10/2019

"Hey I remember Peyton Place and I also ended up at Dover Borstal in 1969
and If your from Watford, I reckon you must be Ted Fry as I was banged up with you in The Scrubbs awaiting Borstal allocation. You used to knock around with a guy called Dave Jeffries from North London.

LTNH - DM" Johnny Murray 06/02/2020

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Retrowow - vintage, retro and social history

20th Century History ★ Antiques & Collectables

Retrowow - vintage, retro and social history

★ 20th Century History ★ Antiques & Collectables ★