ALL FRIARS AYLESBURY PHASE
THREE GIGS HERE
Lest we forget - the Civic Centre
in perspective 2010.
For an official potted history of the first 10 years of
Friars (including Phases One and Two and Phase 3 till 1979),
please see the
news-sheet issued in June 1979 (Police gig)
Below are some of headlines generated in the
Phase Three era. Remember that this website is not intended to be viewed
as a history of Friars, but a chronicle of the gigs that took place.
Obviously a few interesting cuttings found their way here and are worth
sharing from a curiosity point of view
With a capacity over 50% higher than the
Borough Assembly Hall, it take long to work out that bigger acts and
productions could take place in the new building.
As each year went by, it seemed that there
was a production that became the biggest in Friars history until trumped
the following year by a bigger one! Consequently Camel who couldn't any
longer appear at the Borough Assembly Hall, could easily be accommodated
at the new hall and was probably the biggest production of 1975.
In 1976, the burgeoning local rock scene was
getting noticed in the newly launched Aylesbury Roxette
first edition featured the late Warren Harry on the front.
1977, the Vale Hall was renamed the Maxwell Hall in honour of the late
councilor Reg Maxwell.
By 1978, Steve Hackett had stolen the
production honours for the biggest lighting, sound and equipment rig. In 1979 Gary Numan's
massive fluoresent lighting towers had stolen the honours and by 1980 this was trumped well and truly by
Genesis and then the last night with Paul Weller was pretty big. As for the biggest gig (excluding the free Otway gig below), that honour falls to The Clash who
successfully played at Stoke Mandeville Stadium sports hall in 1982 to 2000 people.
In 1978, an interesting experiment paid off.
Friars had been involved in previous free gigs at Rabans Lane, but the
Open Air Otway event in the Market Square attracted up to 20,000 people,
was peaceful, and was filmed and broadcast on ITV.
The caring side of Friars was highlighted
locally and nationally for the way the sales for the highly prestigious
1980 Genesis and
Police gigs were handled with people sleeping all night in the cattle
market featuring on local TV news as well.
Friars should also take a lot of credit for
the risks it took putting on successful gigs by The Clash and Sham 69 in
(underserved) reputation alone saw every council around Aylesbury ban
I think most observers would agree that
Friars seemed to stutter a little in the final two years, particularly in
1984 when no decent bands seemed to be touring. But the
headline that brought Friars to an end would have shocked most members and
it indeed made headlines in the national music press.
We needn't add any more to this headline -
enjoy this website and remember and appreciate what you saw in this sleepy
old town. Some of the text is blurry due to copying limitations, but
remember that headline and remember that you helped bring Friars back.