Southport 1978

Southport, 8th October 1978

Southport Theatre

Southport is recognised as one of the most successful Conference and holiday destinations in the North West. It is an ideal destination for a short break, with a wide range of accommodation available from large imposing hotels to small personally run and friendly guesthouses. There is world class golf at a variety of courses inclusing the famous Royal Birkdale course.

All sorts of evenets take place throughout the year in the area and the theatrre is the largest venbue on merseyside.

Population 90,000

"Southport English Rose"
Miss Southport 1978 Hazel Williams

I believe the Southport boot originates from a NorthWestern member on here who I have known of, on and off, for many years (it's prob come out via SIE). However, no-one owns the copyright to any of Slade's recordings, live, studio, or taped in the supermarket whilst shopping. Which forum had it first is slightly academic - it doesn't become the property of the forum that puts it out first!!

Southport Theatre was most noteable for being the gig where the front of the stage that covered the orchestra pit was seemingly made out of cardboard. The stewards were kept busy keeping the crowd off all evening. Even the PA was set up a long way back.

Towards the end of the show, a bunch of local skinheads decided they wanted to get closer & there was little the bouncers could do. The stage started to noticeably sag under the weight (and possibly even break) in a couple of places and the bouncers had very little choice but to clear the stage of people completely, including the band. I ran out of camera film sometime before the end of the show, unfortunately...

Game over and out we went into the freezing October air.

Southport Theatre had a very flimsy stage.The front (false) section of it covered an orchestra pit. You can see the join in this small photo....
It was ok for the band to walk on it, but not safe to put gear on. Hence the PA system was back in line with the band. A large crowd of local skins decided to do a mass stage invasion - to add to the trouble they had been causing all day - and down they went. Show over.

Ian, I don't agree that the stage broke or the skinheads fell down; my recollection is simply that the show ended abruptly because of the potential risk to all on stage.

Some skinheads from Liverpool managed to get onto the stage (I actually knew one of them!) and one advised people to "get their 'air cut". I distinctly remember Nod letting the geezer to the mike after the latter had indicated he wanted to say something to the audience. The impression I got was Nod wasn't gonna argue with the bloke. The security, if  I remember correctly, consisted of about 3 or 4 gents in dinner suits. Useless!

The stage didn't collapse but that's what Noddy warned about - that and the fact that you'd fuckin' kill yerself if you fell through it. Have to say I don't think there was any malice in what the invaders did - just high jinks.

I'm fairly sure that a couple of people either went through to the pit - or that at least the stage started to crack BUT... I would bow to the memory of anyone else who was there, who is definitely certain that it was otherwise. I was at the front on Jim's side and saw stuff happen..... but it was in 1978!!!

If you listen to Noddy you can hear him warn people about the stage but I'm fairly certain nothing untoward ever actually happened. I just remember feeling disappointed the concert had come to a rather strange end. As I was walking out of the concert I had a chat with a guy who felt the same as I - he didn't mention any problem with the stage, either.

What a shame I ran out of film before the end.... !!

The gig was in the Southport Theatre and Floral Hall complex. (the one situated on the prom.)
Slade played in the Theatre which is bigger than the Floral Hall. The theatre is quite a big venue but when Slade played in '78 it was less than half full.

At the end of the gig the stage didn't exactly cave in. There was a couple of boards which made up the stage approx. 2' 6'' x 1' wide sagging forming a 'V' of about 6'' deep in the middle. This was to the right of where nod stands in the middle of the stage.

My memory of events is pretty good. I got the audio tape only a week or so after the show, listening to it brought it all back again and secured the memory. I was slightly p*ssed off at the time when the gig was cut short.


I would possibly remove some of my comments about the stage definitely going through, as there is so much varied opinion on this. I'm sure I saw someone's leg go through, at which point all the bouncers started arriving on-stage.

The Download Link is here: Download.

My thanks to Chris 'The Historian' Selby for his relentless research. It is said, in certain circles, that Walsall Archives have a seat reserved specifically for him and that Wolverhampton archives consult him when searching the Express & Star

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