Harrogate: Seminal 1960s club is back!

Harrogate event - The seminal Cheltenham Club is returning for one night only at Ripley Town Hall.
Harrogate event - The seminal Cheltenham Club is returning for one night only at Ripley Town Hall.

Gone but not forgotten, one of Harrogate’s most seminal music nights of the 1960s is set to return for one night only this weekend in a heady night of nostalgia and great dancefloor tunes.

The Cheltenham Club Revisited charity tomorrow night will see a special evening of 60s soul and R&B dance at the Hotel De Ville in Ripley, the home of the world famous Ripley Blues Club which has hosted many legendary R&B acts and boasts a superb sprung dance floor.

Hosted by two of Harrogate’s current greatest DJs joined by special guest Leeds R&B record collector Grahame Johnson, this night of vinyl nostalgia will take place on Saturday, November 17.

Fifty years since its heyday, this fundraiser for Parkinsons UK will commemorate The Cheltenham Club, the Harrogate nightspot which was situated on Cheltenham Crescent, approximately where Trotters Bar is today.

From 1967 to 1969 the club was a magnet for Mods and Beat fans alike as, in those days, venues playing rare soul music were few and far between.

Harrogate DJ Mike Lowcock, who now DJs at Movin on a Groove’, the popular bi monthly soul Sunday afternoons at the Ivory Bar in Harrogate, was a patron at the original Cheltenham Club, even DJ-ing there occasionally back in the 60s.

Mike said: “As a teenager I used to go to the club every weekend to discover new soul sounds you just didn’t hear on the radio back then.
“As a keen soul record collector I used to fill in and DJ in the early slot. It will be great to give some of the same records an airing again.”


Also taking part in Cheltenham Revisited will be fellow Harrogate DJ Ian Smith who hosts the monthly ‘across the board’ soul nights at St Roberts Club, and is resident DJ at Harrogate and Ilkley Soul Clubs.

Ian said: “The Hotel De Ville has a fantastic wooden dance floor and an excellent vibe. To host the event at the home of the world famous Ripley Blues is an excellent tie up.

“We will endeavour to bring together the musical interests of Rhythm and Blues fans with soul devotees.

“Early and mid 60’s soul tunes are raw and have a heavy R&B influence predating the smoother and more sophisticated productions prevalent in later years.

“A prime example is Polk Salad Annie, by Blues artist Tony Joe White which was a popular dancer at soul clubs of that era, like the Twisted Wheel. More famously It’s All Over Now, a 60’s smash for the Rolling Stones which was written by soul singer Bobby Womack and first recorded by the Valentinos.”

All the music will be played on the original vinyl records of the time.

Entrance for The Cheltenham Club Revisited is £5 on the door, though booking in advance from the Ripley live web site is advised.

The first 50 bookings will receive a free commemorative Cheltenham Club CD.

All profits from the event will go to Parkinsons UK.

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