Room at the Top (Central Chambers, Market Square, Wigan)
What a wonderful venue with such potent memories. Later to become the guitar vocalist for Outrage, Rod Gerrard played here with Salford group Hells Angels after nicking my drummer [Brian Grant] and guitarist [Dave Nightingale]. I later got revenge when I nicked Rod Gerrard for Outrage and we played this same venue alongside the Wheels [from Belfast] who were a very hot band who I am told had a minor hit in America with Van Morrisons, Gloria. They used to roll up at the venue in an old Ford Consul containing band members and Vox foundation cabs as I remember.
The club was in a multistorey Victorian building facing Wigan bus station with , just one toilet, which would now be titled unisex. I think it comprised of three or four floors and you paid an entrance fee on the way up one set of stairs. Like most venues of that era I dont think they served alcohol.
It was run by an ex wrestler called Ken and his daughter who Rod and I both had the hots for, but one lesson I learned early is not to make passes at a wrestler's daughter [For obvious reasons] so nothing came of that.
The stage which was a low riser was at the rear of the building in a bay window and once the place was rockin the floor flexed that much that I had visions of the whole floor collapsing under the weight leaving the band floating in mid air on a protruding riser. Still have the same dreams 47 years later. I seem to remember either afternoon and evening gigs or evening and all nighters which were always fun. If my memories are inaccurate after all these years I am happy to have the facts corrected.
Another venue which evokes fond memories.
Geoff Parkinson - 25/6/12
I and a group of friends from Bolton used to go to the Room about 1967; sometimes we would go on to the Twisted Wheel from there. It was a fantastic place, they played things like; Phoenix City, Al Capone, Tightrope, Your love is like a see saw, Harlem Shuffle, Knock on wood, etc. They had a chill-out room where you could get-stoned for free by just breathing-in.
You had to [wade in the water] when you used the toilet; the lighting was fluorescent- so every bit of fluff on you glowed.
People I remember, Pauline Purden, Dave Walker, Karl Brooks and a lad from Wigan who used to cut keys on Wigan market. Markey was his nickname.
Everybody was speeding their socks-off. And the police used to hide and nick people for stealing milk bottles off doorsteps on the way to Wigan baths in the morning.
Fred Dickinson - 27/7/12
My friends and I would go up to the Room a few nights a week for a couple of years and the atmosphere was fantastic. We would have been 15/16 years old then and my greatest memory was of The Wheels playing. I can't recall all of the group, but I do remember the singer who was black, had a bald head and an earring in his left ear. My goodness, what a voice! Incredible. The song that had everybody glued to the spot one night though was when they played a slow tempo song - unusual for them - and the song was With God On Our Side. You could have heard a pin drop, and the roar of applause at the end was staggering. Wonderful days.
Mollie Matthews - 11/10/12
Reading the other comments brought so many brilliant memories back. I used to go here on a sunday afternoon mainly when there was always good music playing, it was owned by Ken ? and his daughter jackie was a friend of mine at the time, (cant remember their last name) she lived near me in Standish. I remember we were always careful what we wore as if we had a skimpy top on with a white bra underneath the lights in there used to highlight the bra!
Sue Cookson was Susan Round - 27/8/13