Locarno Boy wants to hear from you.

Welcome to Locarno Boy – where we are as dedicated to the reality of life in the nightclubs of today – as we are of those in days gone by.

Locarno Boy aims to record the truth about life in the nightclub industry; to link up with as many people who “were there at the time” as possible and to create an accurate record.

The Locarno’s were the flagship dancehalls of Mecca Ltd – where Managers were trained in every aspect of ballroom/nightclub management from how to defuse conflict and manage security staff to overseeing dinner dances, stage presentation and much, much more. The key to it all being their own personality and style to find different ways each week to make their club even more interesting.

Sir Alex Ferguson met his wife at Glasgow Locarno. Julie Walters danced at Birmingham Locarno, security was maintained at Bristol Locarno by Darth Vader (David Prowse) and I’m told Edinburgh Locarno by James Bond (Sean Connery). The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Kinks, Led Zeppelin, Jethro Tull, Cream. Sex Pistols, Bay City Rollers etc. etc – all appeared at Mecca venues.

The BBC televised “Come Dancing” from Mecca venues, while the Miss World competition showed Mecca flagship premises such as Hammersmith Palais, The Empire Leicester Square, and The Lyceum ballroom.

Locarno Boy also aims to meet head-on to the challenges of the nightclub world of today, on such matters as the impact of the inexperienced managers. Those who lack training, initiative and vision. Security staff that hide behind the inadequacies of the SIA, and legislative bodies with absolutely no idea of the differences between the management of nightclubs and the management of bars.

Personal stories are flowing in from around the UK, plus reviews of some of the fabulous “must visit” nightclubs.Yes – they do exist and they don`t have to offer ridiculously cheap drinks prices to survive.

We’re looking for your comments and stories – you may want to tell us why you enjoyed a particular night club – or hated it – if you are little hesitant we can edit for you and give you pseudonym .


  1. Well what happy memories are recalled when reading the stories and remembering many of the names mentioned here. In my case from the former Baileys (can’t remember what it was called after that) to The Adulte Ballroom Burslem (not EMI/THF/1st Leisure) to R&J’s Hanley, R&J’s Blackburn, R&J’s Derby, The Empire Lecister Square, R&J’s Doncaster, The Garter Manchester, Peppermint Place Blackburn (again), R&J’s/Froggies Oldham. It was an amazing few years working with Dick Childs, David Dilks, Graham Parker, Graham Peel, Sid Stewart, Tony Spragg, Mike Payne, Bill Gilligan, Matthew Clements, Andy McIvor, Brendan McLoughlan…… and so many more. Wherever you are out there get in touch (you will fond me on Linked In). Isn’t it time that we had a reunion (or has there been one and I’ve missed it)?

  2. I worked at numerous mecca ballroom with mike Allen collection. And at Newcastle under Lyme tony ravel band. I think the manager there was ernie shaw.that would be about 1975/77

  3. O.M.G.!!! so many memories,,Blackburn Cav. was my favorite,,,if i wrote a book they would say it was fiction,,,!!! lol

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