This part of ‘Terry’s Pages’ reflects on the ‘craziness’ of ‘Easter 1964 & 1965’
Apparently it all kicked off in: Margate (Easter 1964)….where ‘Mods’ and ‘Rockers’ clashed on the seafront and spilled over into the town terrorising the local residents and generally causing mayhem…the likes that have never before been witnessd in this quaint seaside-town!!!
For many years ‘cockneys’ and their like, took their annual ‘Jolly’ to Margate and sometimes to other resorts to get away from the ‘hub-bub’ of London.
But…this year the unprecedented ‘outburst’ from the warring ‘teenagers’ escalated to: Brighton.
As a 12 year old i witnessed a frightening display of ‘gang warfare’ on the beaches and into the town itself.
Fortunately our local ‘Bobbies’ dealt with the ‘situation’ (after a while!!!) and made many arrests. The day’s events were recorded in the ‘Evening Argus’…the photos being especially exiting!
The town quickly recovered form this ‘holiday mayhem’ and steadfastly returned to it’s usual business of pedalling ice-creams;candifloss and general ‘seaside-tat’!!!
(But…the following year!…..wait and see)
The ‘1965’ clash between the Mods& Rockers took on a more sinister guise!!!
Yes it was ‘Easter hols’, again and the ‘A23’ saw legions of motorbikes and scooters hit the road on the way to sunny Brighton for a ‘re-match’!
From late morning…onwards, sporadic scuffles broke out on the seafront cafes ; the pier and in the afternoon, into the town,itself!
Our boys in blue presented a ‘high profile’ (i suspect many were on ‘overtime’) and relished the thought of having a good scrap with the ‘visitors’.
Many arrests were made and the guilty parties,from both sides, were given a rap on the knuckles by our wonderful judiciary!
Things in Brighton quickly returned to normal for the coming summer-season…but!……these events went down in Brighton’s history as a ‘major’ occurence and eventually in 1979 the cult-film Quadrophenia was released…starring: Phils Daniels;Lesley Ash and Sting (as ‘Ace Face’).
Was it just a coincidence to name Sting’s character: ‘Ace’…as this was the name of the famous cafe where the ‘rockers’ used to meet!!
(Also featured in the cult British film ‘The Leather Boys’: 1963)
P.S. If anyone wants to get hold of photos of the mods & rockers clashes they can be bought from the ‘postcard’ shop in: Queens Rd.
Part 4 of ‘Terry’s pages will be a ‘biggy’!……
Music T.V. and Films of the sixties
bye for now……Terry West