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Radio Sutch & City - Part 14

Issue: 4 Updated: 26th July 2017

A look at the times of the Calverts musical impresarios of the 1950's & 1960's

Reg Calvert from a home made poster

Reg Calvert Musical Entrepreneur

Reg & Dorothy's sweet shop

Southampton Sweet Shop

Tentative steps into the world of entertainment came through playing the piano in the evenings, during the day Reg & his wife Dorothy ran a sweet shop in Southampton in the 1950's

A small printing firm, dances at fairs were the prelude to Reg arranging dances in the town a prelude to his Package Tours

Dorothy balances the Mirror Ball 1958

The Mirror Ball was especially made for the Civic Hall in Southampton. It was too heavy for the ceiling so was hung in the Royal Pier

Danny Storm in rehersal

Reg overlooks a Danny Storm rehearsal performance

Real name David Hurran above with his backing band The Strollers in 1960

Danny Storm with Eddie Sex comes off stage in 1960

Danny Reg's 'Cliff' was to appear on a number of low cost long playing records (LP's) of the day

Clifton Hall

Clifton Hall purchased by the Calverts in 1961

Reg & Dorothy Calvert ran their 'Rock School' until 1965, a lovable rogue Reg picked up the nick name 'Uncle' from his boys, a tag that continued to be used through his days running Radio City

Reg & Dorothy pictured in Clifton Hall in 1961

Bands lived in the hall, and were encouraged by Reg to change name & line-up for his 'Package Tours' and recording sessions in a never ending quest for chart success

Danny Storm single I Just Can't Fool My Heart

Danny Storm Pye Single

Danny had a minor hit with with 'Honest I Do/Sad But True' released on Pye Records 7N 32025 it made #42 in the UK on 13th July 1963, the follow up 'I Just Can't Fool My Heart/Thinking Of You' 7N 35091 failed to make an impression

Collectors pay up to £15.00 for Danny's singles & some compilation albums that include his songs make £25.00 & more

Audio Break

Danny Storm on the 'Package Tour' compilation from 1963. These & many other similar albums were part of the small Radio City record library

1963 Package Tour LP Sleeve

The 'Package Tour' long player GGL.0268 from 1963 on Golden Guinea (Pye Records)

Reg & Dorothy at work in the office

Reg & Dorothy Calvert working in the office at Clifton Hall

Robin Hood

The beat group Robin Hood

Rod Allen - Bass*, Gary - Drums , Robin Hood (Mike West) - Lead Vocals & Barry Pritchard - lead Guitar*

*Later members of one of Reg's top groups the Fortunes, a later band line-up included Fred Heath later to join the Federals who became Johnny Kid (And Pirates) who exploited Mike West who had a very bad squint hidden by an eye patch

1964 7"Parlophone Federals Twilight Time 7" single

Federals Parlophone (EMI) Single

Another rarity the penultimate single of six released on parlophone between 1963-1964 'Twilight Time' R5193 now valued at £15.00

Audio Break

Federals 1964 Single on Parlophone Records. The group released 6 singles with no chart luck before evolving into Johnny Kid & The Pirates

David Edward Sutch

David Edward Sutch

Above seeks election victory for his Monster Raving Loony Party for detail see Sutch & City Pics - Part 1

1963 7" Decca Record I'm A Hog For You

I'm A Hog for You Baby Decca Records Single

Most of the original releases now sought after by collectors for example the double A sided 'I'm A Hog For You/Monster In Black Tights' on Decca 11747 from 1963 is now valued at £20.00

Reg had signed David & his band The Savages who he managed from 1963 - 1966

Bomb Blast Microphone Sticker

Sticker from a 1960's groups Reslo RBT ribbon microphone

With a stage name Screaming Lord Sutch David built up a following & made records with Joe Meek promoting his Rock Horror Show as alter ego Jack The Ripper which toured across the UK & much of the Continent

Together in Radio Caroline's wake they cooked up Radio Sutch, at first a publicity stunt for Screaming Lord Sutch & Reg's roster of bands, the station developed a life of it's own attracting a reasonable local audience to its amateur low powered output

Susan Calvert 1963

Susan Calvert: 1963

Reg Calvert introduced both his daughters to his radio stations, Susan made an appearing once on 'Britain's Teenage Station'

Her sister Candy was heard more frequently on 'Candy's Pop Shop' a short weekly show centred around the 'happening' music scene from her own chart research with snippets taken from fanzines in between 'the platters that mattered'

Radio City Letter Head 1964

Radio City Letter Head: 1964

Radio Sutch lasted a short five months before Reg turned it into Radio City

There were few girls in radio in the 60's, and who was first is a close call: Mandy Raven could be heard with husband Mike on KING Radio, and later Radio 390

The Calvert girls cousin Tamara Harrison made a brief appearance & Romford Essex beauty queen Linda Bass given the name Peggy Knight by Reg was thrust in front of the Radio City microphone in yet another publicity stunt

Tower of Power Poster

Tower of Power Poster

By 1966 with it's impressive 200' antenna it was christened the Tower of Power by Engineer Tony Pine

With the big antenna transmissions sounded more powerful than the meagre 800 watts thanks to the efforts of Senior Radio Engineer Ian West

Screaming Lord Sutch Story LP Sleeve

The 1991 Compilation The Screaming Lord Sutch Story'

Released in 1991 containing the best of his Rock Horror live set

David's crazy hair party piece was achieved by him bending over forward then quickly throwing body upright as the photograph taken

Tower of Power Logo Artwork

Composit Tower of Power Logo

By September 1965 Reg had re-branded Radio Sutch Radio City

Dorothy & Candy Calvert

Dorothy & Candy Calvert in a Press shot from 1965

Dorothy & William

Dorothy would venture to Whitstable with William, her pet monkey tucked in her coat. Anything went in the 'Swinging 60's' but then the town was a sleepy back water different than its reputation today as Isslington-on-Sea. Dorothy and David Sutch's antics before her scared half the population witless

RCA RF Amplifier Transmitter Valve

299 Transmitter Valve

Not much remains of the controversial transmitter delivered to the Towers by Project Atlanta

Above one of two surviving 'bottles' from the RF amplifier, there were another two in the modulator, the valve is rated at 10kW RF (CW) & stands 2 feet high and is a foot wide

These RCA valves were forced air cooled & are heavy

The big problem on Shivering Sands was that there just wasn't enough generator power available to run the transmitter, it would take plenty of juice just to heat the filaments on the four valves!

Hardly surprising the TX was abandoned as unserviceable

Death of a Pirate Play Poster

Susan Moore's (Calvert) play based around her Fathers life as a pop entrepreneur & early British Commercial Radio pioneer

Poster pdf : Page 1 pdf : Page 2 pdf : Page 3 pdf : Page 4 pdf : Play Text pdf : Play Front Page pdf

Baby it's cold outside silk painting

Baby it's cold outside

A copy of a silk painting for Christmas by Susan K Moore-Calvert painted during a session with her granddaughter, Clara, who wanted to paint a picture of 'Puck' from Midsummer Nights Dream for homework

04/12/08 - I worked for Clifton Hall Artists under the name of Johnny Washington. I lived at the Hall from 1962 through to late 1963. I recorded as a solo artist on Fontana Records & in 1966 became a member of the Applejacks (from Solihull). We toured in the USA in the late 1960's and after the group broke up in the early 70's I moved to America to live

Al Jackson the original lead singer before me, owns a pub somewhere in the Midlands. Megan Brady (nee Davis) works in the medical profession in London. Don Gould (piano) Has his own company that makes commercial Jingles for Radio & TV. Martin Baggott (guitar) is a general contractor who builds multi-million dollar homes in Palm Springs California. Gerry Freeman (drums) has been the musical director/drummer for Shirley Bassey for the past 30 years. Phil Cash (guitar) still lives in Solihull where he owns his own engine repair business. I have been living in the USA for the past 38 years still recording, still performing and still enjoying it. Jon Washington

Grateful thanks to Dorothy & Susan Calvert for their valuable contribution to this feature & to Robin for the transmitter information

This feature has been produce to compliment the superb personal feature produced by David St John on Reg Calvert

The story will continue in Sutch & City Part 15

For all the Radio Sutch & City features navigate from ScrapBook Index

For a brief history of all the Thames Estuary Forts see Fort Fax

For the range of documentary CD's in the Offshore Radio "Roaring 60's" collection, the Sealand VCD, go to Offshore Shop

Trips to the Maunsell Sea Forts are arranged throughout the summer from Herne Bay & Whitstable in Kent

For details of cruises to see the sights of the Thames Estuary & North Kent Coast see Boat Trips

[HOME] (c)Bob Le-Roi 2009