Happy and care­free days dur­ing the sum­mer sea­son

Let's Talk - - POSTBAG - PAT PHILPOTT Great Yar­mouth, Nor­folk

Terry Red­head’s ar­ti­cle (Au­gust is­sue) on Great Yar­mouth’s heady days of sum­mer shows with the stars of the day rekin­dled the nos­tal­gia for the happy, care­free days of my youth.

How many peo­ple would re­mem­ber such acts as Old Mother Ri­ley, The Five Smith Boys or Joan Re­gan, all es­tab­lished names then?

In ad­di­tion to the twice-nightly shows dur­ing the week, the Re­gal The­atre also put on Sun­day night en­ter­tain­ment. I saw many fa­mous stars there, in­clud­ing Bill Eck­s­tine and Billy Daniels from the States and the big­gest name of them all, Roy Or­bi­son.

One of the top Bri­tish acts of the day to ap­pear was the Eric De­laney Band, with Eric clos­ing the show with a much-en­cored drum solo.

The Bea­tles also made a Sun­day night ap­pear­ance and I hur­ried along to get a ticket but as I couldn’t get a bal­cony seat, I didn’t go … I sup­pose back then I had vi­sions of grandeur. How­ever, a cou­ple of years later I was for­tu­nate enough to catch up with them in Sydney.

Just af­ter I left school I worked in Sut­ton’s shop in Re­gent Road which sold kip­pers and bloaters on one side, even box­ing and post­ing them all over Bri­tain, and made sticks of rock on the other.

The pub­lic could come in and see how let­ters were formed and wrapped in an outer coat­ing of doughy su­gar then rolled out to end up as sticks of rock with the town’s name run­ning through.

That year Hughie Green, a pop­u­lar pre­sen­ter of the tal­ent show Op­por­tu­nity Knocks, came to do a sea­son at the Re­gal and wanted sticks of rock made bear­ing his name which were given out at his shows.

An­other young as­sis­tant and I took the rock to the the­atre and were shown in through the stage door to the great man’s dress­ing room. Although he wasn’t home, this very near brush with top show busi­ness left quite an im­pres­sion on me for a few days.

Just a few weeks ago a star from yes­ter­year ap­peared on TV. My old mem­ory didn’t even have to go into over­drive be­fore I called out “Got it!” It turned out to be Vic Flick. I saw him per­form at both the Re­gal and the Aquar­ium as lead gui­tar in Lon­nie Done­gan’s group. He also played with Her­man’s Her­mits and did ses­sion work on the James Bond film themes and on Tom Jones’ big hit, It’s Not Un­usual.

Vic has a list of cred­its which would com­pare favourably with any mu­si­cian around.

And, to close the show, I re­cently heard on the ra­dio a song called One-Two-Three, im­me­di­ately tak­ing me back more than 50 years to re­mind me of my first ever girl­friend.

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