Kew Boathouse club

The Boathouse, Kew

Kew Boathouse clubAccording to Don Craine of The Downliners Sect fame (who played there as the original Downliners in 1962 and as The Downliners Sect in 1963), the Boathouse, Kew was run by the Jones brothers and was considered to be one of the best southwest/west London gigs, along with Hounslow Baths, the Capital R Feltham, and Southall Community Centre.

Below I’ve started to collate a gig list of bands that played there from the early to late 1960s. I would welcome any additions in the comments below.

I’ve sourced the gigs from a number of newspapers – the Hounslow, Brentford and Chiswick Post, the Richmond & Twickenham Times and the Thames Valley Times. Brian Mansell provided the Frankie Reid gig and Mick Capewell’s Marmalade Skies website was also incredibly useful.

11 June 1962 – Frankie Reid & The Casuals

5 July 1967 – Dave Martin Group

23 February 1968 – Katch 22
15 March 1968 – Time & Motion
29 March 1968 – Astronauts
30 June 1968 – John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers
12 July 1968 – Episode Six
19 July 1968 – Appearance
26 July 1968 – Coloured Raisins
16 August 1968 – Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds
13 September 1968 – Jimmy James & The Vagabonds
27 September 1968 –Skatalites
11 October 1968 – The Move
20 October 1968 – Fleetwood Mac
25 October 1968 – Pink Floyd
8 November 1968 – The Pretty Things
22 November 1968 – Coloured Raisins
13 December 1968 – Trifle
27 December 1968 – Jon James Swamp

Thank you to Gray Newell for sending in the photos.

Alan Box of the Locomotion at the Kew Boathouse
Alan Box of the Locomotion at the Kew Boathouse


24 thoughts on “The Boathouse, Kew”

  1. Few more dates from Melody Maker:

    15 September 1968 – The Foundations
    22 September 1968 – Cliff Bennett & His Band
    29 September 1968 – The Coloured Raisins

  2. West London band, The Dave Martin Group, which became the Magic Roundabout around August 1967 played this venue a lot.

    Original bass player Roger Flavell has very kindly passed on some data sheets from his fellow band mates.

    The following are when The Dave Martin Group performed:

    24 January 1967
    31 January 1967

    8-9 February 1967
    13-16 February 1967
    20-23 February 1967
    27-28 February 1967

    1-2 March 1967
    6-9 March 1967
    13-16 March 1967
    21-23 March 1967
    27-30 March 1967

    3-6 April 1967

    19 May 1967
    12-15 June 1967
    19-22 June 1967
    26-29 June 1967

    3-6 July 1967 (5 July is listed above in the main entry)

    At this point, The Dave Martin Group became The Magic Roundabout. The following are listed as The Magic Roundabout

    4-7 December 1967

    1-4 January 1968

    12-15 February 1968

    25-28 March 1968

    29-30 April 1968
    1-2 May 1968

    24-27 June 1968

    1. Good Morning.
      I am trying to locate a manager of one of the bands that played at the boat house in 1967. He is a family member that we have lost contact with his name is James Stuart Cook. He was known as Jamie. I don’t know the name of the band he was associated with.

      1. Hi Paul.
        Am looking for a family member who was part of a band or he help out with a band that played at the boat house in 1967. His name was( Jamie)James stuart Cook.) I don’t know what the band was called.

        Thanks Mimi.

  3. Roger Flavell (see above) very kindly passed on some missing Magic Roundabout gigs at this venue from one of the band members:

    29 July 1968
    30 July 1968
    31 July 1968
    1 August 1968

  4. I used to go there at weekend, but before your dates, very early 60’s, was a great place at weekends, I remember they had a blind piano player there, who used to sing, must be lots of people who remember him…also there was a fairground next to the bridge,,,,,,,Just saying…..

  5. Paul Lucas, bass player and singer with The Tridents (who featured Jeff Beck from about late August 1964-March 1965), provided these gigs at Kew Boathouse

    30 November 1963

    18 April 1964

    10 October 1964 (Jeff Beck a member now)

  6. Lindsay Bex, who played drums in the Tridents before Jeff Beck joined, provided this gig that they played and are missing from Paul Lucas ones above:

    14 February 1964

  7. Hi Nick
    For your records, I remember also seeing the Cream (I think they were calling themselves that band name then) perform at the Boathouse in 1968 but do not remember the actual date when they played there. Another time I saw Rick Mayal on more than one occasion in 1968. I went to this venue fairly often at this time. On every occasion there were very few people attending the gigs – leading me to believe the sessions were not advertised very well and/or the bands used this venue for practice sessions. It seems amazing that famous bands were so accessible then. It is a shame that so many music venues no longer exist and that pub licences were introduced, so bands stopped playing in pubs because of extra costs the landlords had to pay – all that talent, skill and enjoyment missed on a night out.

    1. On the night Pink Floyd played there…October 68 …l was told by a couple of mates that there was seven people in the audience…the group and the ‘roadies’ outnumbered the audience…Regards,…Len Bradey.

  8. Does anyone remember seeing Slade playing this venue? I also saw Frankie Miller. But this would have been back in 1970s

  9. I am really interested in Music in West London in the 1960’s and 1970’s I grew up in Kew but was unfortunately too young to enjoy the Boathouse (but was a regular visitor to the fair next door) I saw most of my live music at The Hammersmith Odeon and The Red Cow in Hammersmith and The Nashville in Kesington. Can anyone help/confirm if Slade did actually play The Boathouse? and when I was very young I was told Jimi Hendrix played there but I’m not sure if this was just a local legend or the truth? Thanks!

  10. After posting my last comment I have done a bit of searching on the Net and come across these dates for The Boathouse including answering my own question about Slade!

    29.12.1971 – Slade
    05.01.1972 – Status Quo
    09.02.1972 – Slade
    26.03.1972 – Status Quo
    19.10.1972 – The Pink Fairies

    I really wish I had been just a year older I would have gone to see Slade and Quo (I saw Quo many times at Hammersmith up until 1975 and again when they reformed ‘The Frantic Four’ a few years ago)

  11. According to Thames Valley Times, the following played in late 67

    24 November 1967 – Washington DCs and The Motives

    8 December 1967 – The Humminbirds

    31 December 1967 – The Arrows

  12. My dad was a partner in this in the 50s and early 60s I think it was called westmoore and partners heard all sorts of stories,fighting with the local market boys the owner getting the hump with screaming lord sutch for dancing on the piano, I heard from an uncle at dads funeral that they had had the Beatles booked just as they were getting famous and they had told them to do one because they wanted 80 instead of the original 30 pounds ,I never heard this from dad so it could be an urban myth
    When we were kids our garage loft had a huge pile of posters and rolls of 6/- admission tickets that we played with all I have now is one poster for the galtimore club and one roll of tickets

  13. I was a member of Milton’s Fingers who played the Biathouse a lot in the second half of the 60’s . I remember two fans called Sue and Jenny and the main man, king of the mods was a guy called Pete, great times,
    Milton Mclachlan

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