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In order to honour MG Ace Face, and to carry the torch for the (hopefully short) time while he's gone (and I'm confident he'll return), let's revive Motown's thread, which is far too good to be forgotten...

Here's to you, Mr Motown!

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  • 3671552900?profile=RESIZE_930xRolf Kühn with Mr & Mrs Byrd on the New York subway.

  • 3496339714?profile=RESIZE_930xWhenever I see one of these Mini Mokes, it always reminds me of Johnny Moke. I'm sure you know the story, so I promise not to bang on about The Scene Club, or his influences on fashion and the Mod movement. Suffice to to say that he had a Mini Moke and came to be known as Johnny Moke. Clients included Weller and Hendrix. In 1979 he was asked to design a scooter for an Italian manufacturer, of which produced 50 limited machines. Anyhow, this is a photo I took at the Isle Of Wight Scooter Rally 2019. Sadly, not too many of these around now and alas John Rowley is no longer with us.

    • Brilliant picture! And wonderful memories too.

      In July 1970 (aged 16) I was best man at my brother’s wedding at the Catholic Church on Fulham Road, just around the corner from The Cafe Des Artiste, where, incidentally, I met my first wife, three years later (I believe The Stones and their contemporaries played there; anybody remember it?).

      I was driven to the wedding in a white mini moke by the priest who was to perform the ceremony. He was a member of a missionary order called The White Fathers who ran a small fleet of them for the use of the clergy and he had bagged one for the day.

      He picked me up early and after a pint in The Gunter Arms to calm my nerves we went on a cruise of the Fulham Road - Kings Road to take in “the scenery”,  as he described the display of miniskirts, kinky boots, peacock shirts  and military paraphernalia on display.  After the ceremony he drove the bride and groom to the reception in it.

      Fast forward eight years and my neighbour in Hampton, an antiquarian book dealer, rocks up in another white moke, which I was able to cadge a lift in on occasion.

      Other than these two encounters I have seldom seen mokes on the road. They really are a splendid summer vehicle and in writing this I realise that one would make a fantastic vintage wedding car to hire out, if only you could find a decent example at a decent price.

    • Great story and good you mentioned Cafe Des Artists and the area. It was one of those "in" places where mods from upwest would venture into. Places like the The Cromwellian, Troubador, Six Bells (Jazz rooms above the pub) spring to mind in the area. Generally, I found these places too trendy (places to be seen) rather than comfortable for my speedy lifestyle. CDA had a lower profile though at the time. If I bump into my friend, who seems able to recall every hour of his life, I will ask who we went to see there!
      Six Bells was popular as it was opposite Chelsea College (London Univ), so we would meet friends from there and do the rounds. Early sixties people like Zoot Money and folky bluesy types like Alexis Korner etc. would play there. To be honest, Kings Road by the late sixties had turned into another Carnaby Street nightmare. Previously in the very early sixties it was a linkup place to get illicite substances, as it was a kind of crossover point between the beat generation lifestyle, way of life (at the Fulham end!!) and the incoming modernists.
      Cafe Des Artists was by Redcliffe Gardens as you know, but rarely gets a mention on forums, probably overlooked, as Redcliffe Gardens is always associated with The Beatles song Day In The Life. Do you have any outside or interior photos of CDA? Would love to see them.
      Spoke to Dave Dry (look him up in MG) when taking these pics, he was reminding me about Eddy Grimstead and Scooter shops! I tried to stay awake, he recalls Speedway of Acton, would have been the biggy in SW and West London, but we couldn't remember the Fulham Rd/Kings Road scooter shop. Do you know? (Don't start us off on scooter shops).

    • Here are the only pictures of CDA (in various guises) I can turn up:

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      Exterior a lot more upmarket looking and brightly lit than I remember it.3501879658?profile=RESIZE_710x3501883408?profile=RESIZE_710xCouple of shots of the interior in 2012, billed as The Dukebox, the cellar arches much more lavishly furnished than I remember but the “prison” window is very familiar.

      3501913536?profile=RESIZE_710xEven more opulent view of the arches, undated, billed as The Valmont Club.  In my mind the walls were limewash and mildew brickwork, running with condensation. 

      I believe my wife, four years older than me and a scenester mod, was a member (I was signed in as a guest by a mate). She was also regular at The Cromwellian and the Bag O Nails back in the day.  When I met her she had an evening job as barmaid at The Markham in the Kings Road (now a Santander Bank) just opposite the Chelsea Drugstore and a little way down from the then delapidated Peasantry, which of course has a fascinating history all of it’s own - see Wikipedia if you’re interested. Pretty sure it features in the 1965 Oliver Reed movie The Party’s Over. 

      Sorry Soho, zero recollections of scooter shops, just a tad too young to do anything other than drool over the armadas of machines making their way up and down the High Road in Chiswick. Would mainly have been the Devonshire Road mods on their way to and from The Boathouse at Kew and the Riki-Tick in Hounslow. 

    • Blimey, £22,000!!!

    • Charge it to my account!

       

    • Done!  You have been. Hahaha 

  • Old skool mod at the Brighton ride out yesterday - no helmet. Took lots of “snaps” that turned our sh1t - this was one of the best  

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  • 3419557031?profile=RESIZE_930x

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