Manor Lounge (Stockport)

manor lounge

The Manor Lounge Club was in Wellington Road South, Stockport, north east Cheshire and was opened in 1963 by local businessman Reg Pickstock (b. Reginald Pickstock, 1930).
The Manor Lounge was a subterranean club housed in the former café of the Wellington Picture House. It housed in excess of 1,000 people and surprisingly had no license to sell alcohol.
Pickstock not only managed, ran this club but also The Kingfisher, 25a Warren Street, Andrew Square, Stockport (from 1961), The Tabernacle, Middle Gate, Stockport (from 1966), Sgt. Peppers, Middle Gate, Stockport (from 1967) and Blazes, Stockport.
In 1965 Henry Clarke a local band manager and promoter joined the staff of The Manor Lounge. He was employed as a general 'Mr.-Fix-It' which today would be best described as Operations or Venue Manager.
Pickstock and Clarke preferred live music at The Manor, but they would also have 'disco nights' on evening's they did not have live music and regular D.J.s with a regular night spot were John Lewis and Jimmy Cohen (b. James Cohen).  
Clarke did not stay long and left in Late 1965.

Pickstock closed The Manor Lounge in 1966 and opened The Tabernacle (The Fab Tab) that was later called Sgt. Peppers (from 1967).

Information courtersy John H. Warburg  5 March 2022


Manor Lounge gigs - can you add to these?

  • 15/10/1964 The Beat Boys
  • 29/10/64 Four Pennies
  • 13/08/64 Gin House 
  • 03/04/66 Pinkertons Assorted Colours
  • 16/04/66 Lou Christie
  • 24/04/66 Wayne Fontana and Mindbenders
  • 28/04/66 Dave Dee, Dozy,Beaky,Mick and Tich
  • 08/05/66 Jimmy Cliff 

1965 Manor Lounge Group Competition

Yes it was an incredible day! There were SO many bands there, I am sure it would jog a lot of memories. It was 1965 I think, at the Manor Lounge. I think it was won by the "Red Admirals". It was organised by the Rhythm House, Stockport. The compere was Graham King (manager Rhythm House, and drummer himself).

We were first on, the line up was myself (drums) age 11, Steve Parkes (bass) age 13, Kev Bowden (vox continental) age 14, and Al Bancroft (guitar) age 14.

We split about 6 months later, and Kev joined the Ginhouse, he must have been only 15/16 then !!. 

I went on as a solo act (singer) as "Dane Young" (nicking the name from "Ricky and Dane Young" who became the Hollies !! My first solo gig was a huge working mens club in Manchester with Karl Denver, I was 15.

Robert Parkes - The Orphans - 5/3/09

I was lead guitarist in The Spots. We played in that paticular competition and we came either second or third. I remember it was a long day with fond memories. I will talk to Bill McGeehan who was rhythm guitarist and singer to see if he can recall any further information. Tony Meadows

Yes!! I remember you Tony, and the Spots. Did you have a van covered with spots (or am I getting altzheimers)? We were the kid group on first and I even remember our two allocated songs - "Walking the dog" and "Wipeout" with drum solo!

Happy days ! I was 11yrs old .

Robert Parkes - The Orphans - 28/5/09 


"I saw every band there from the Kinks, Small Faces, the Who and even Cream. When that closed, another place called the Tabernacle opened (opp Strawberry Studios) saw Jimi Hendrix there and many others. Also, the Sinking Ship was another good place."

Chris Statham - Axis

For 12/6 I got to listen to a night of Cream and a ten minute chat with Ginger Baker at the bar, how much would that cost now? The Manor was a class club.

Ken Fisher

I can remember seeing Wayne Fontana & The Mindbenders a number of times at the Manor Lounge Beat Club on Wellington Road South, Stockport in 64.

There were loads of good groups playing there, but Wayne Fontana was by far the best. Their stage show was brilliant music with a lot of humour. I bought all their singles and 2 LP's.

The last time I saw Wayne was when I was living in the Noth East in the 80's. He, and the New Mindbenders played the Sports Centre in Ashington, Northumberland. Now in 2008 I'm back in the North West.

I had an old age moment last year when, after buying tickets to see Wayne Fontana at Southport I mixed the date up and missed seeing him by a day. Um Um Um Um Um Um!

David Sumner

Please add to your list of acts who appeared at the Manor Lounge:

  • Tom Jones
  • The Kinks

What fab nights we had. Does anyone remember Sgt Peppers and The Kingfisher in Stockport?


The one and only time that I went to the Manor Lounge was to see Donovan. What a disaster!
There he was, poor guy, sat on a tall stool,trying to do an acoustic show,not even a microphone, to a crowd of screaming kids. For about fifteen minutes,he sat there, jaws moving, but no-one could hear a word, or even hear his guitar, then I think he just gave up and sidled off stage. I don't know if anyone noticed he'd gone.

Barry Sheekey

A class club. Used to go every Friday Night. I loved the Toggery Five. Bought my clothes from the Toggery in the precinct.
Every time I go home to Stockport. and stop at the traffic lights and gaze at the door, memories come flooding back.

Stuart Risdale - Torquay - 28/4/09

Many very happy memories of The Manor Lounge. One of my favourite venues and my 'local'. It realy should be remembered on a par with the Manchester Oasis and even the Liverpool Cavern.
It's where I met my 1st wife, who subsequently became our Fan Club Secretary. They booked some damn good acts including Donovan, Tom Jones, etc and Joan Baez came to see us there.

Graham Smith - The Toggery Five - 25/9/09

What great memories! I used to go most Thursdays, saw many great acts but best for me were The Who, The Pretty Things, and The Walker Brothers. Too many to mention. The Tab was just as good till it changed to a disco a la Sgt Peppers. Saw Andy Fairweather Low turn up in a limo after the rest of Amen Corner arrived in a clapped out van. Swift pint in The Blossoms or Wheatseaf as Manor didn`t have a drinks licence. Happy days.

Bill Dawson - 23/2/10

Saw so many big names, Manfred Mann, Kinks, Brian Poole and the Tremeloes,Donovan though he seemed out of place,The Walker Brothers I remember John Walker's jumper starting to unthread and he nearly choked had to be pulled to one side,I also remember Cathy Mcgowan coming for a dance competition, and the winners got to go on Ready Steady Go, also Tom Jones before he made it big, saw the Stylos there as well, loved them, shame they never made it big !!

Judith Sandiford - 10/3/10

The Toggery 5 was going down to London for the final of a televised beat competition "Ready Steady Win" on Assosiated Redifusion TV. This was in the summer of 1964. The Manor Lounge had a sister club in Stockport (can't remember the name) and if you wanted to go down to London to support the group you had to turn up at this club on the Sunday. I went and so went free along with two coach loads to support The Toggery 5.

As most know they came second in a done deal and won a new van. It was a fantastic time and the music was fantastic.

Another group that played regulary at the Lounge was "Them" I remember one time they arrived without their gear and used local group, "The Mersey Squares" gear. Went to the Cavern and Oasis but the Manor Lounge holds the most memories.

David Sumner - 4/4/10

Manor was the place to be !! Saw most of the artists previously mentioned but I'd like to add Lulu and the Luvvers, Peter and Gordon, (yuk) I'm sure Jimmy Savile compered one night and remember passing on the stairs, Them, with Van Morrison. 

We liked a few beers first in the Bowling Green on Charles Street, and we would draw straws for one of us to go in to the Manor and then come back to the pub with his pass out stamped on the back of his hand.

We then would all copy said passout in biro the best we could, knowing it was fairly dark on the door, and it never failed. probably 10 of us would get in for 2/6d or what ever it was.I'd like now to apologise to the owner.

I seem to remember going out with 10 shillings, having a few beers, getting into the club for nowt, and finishing the night off with fish and chips from oakes chippy around the corner,and still have change in my pocket! 

Dave Moore - now living in La Marina, San Fulgencio, Alicante - 23/5/10

I played at The Manor Lounge a number of times, mainly with a band from Hazel Grove call THE OUTRIDERS. We worked with Tom Jones & The Squires, The Moody Blues and I think Steam Packet ( LJB Rod & Jools + Brian Auger Trinity). It was a really good club - much better than what became PEPPERS.

The worst thing was the load, but in those days we didn't have 5k PAs and big Subs. Great days

David Giles - 18/8/10

Only went to the Manor a few times but saw Steampacket - Julie Driscoll,Brian Auger,Rod Stewart +. Remember Nutty Norman from Bredbury. Mostly went to the Wheel and Oasis as well as the Rowntrees clubs Talk of the the Town,Sound,Spring Gardens.
Does anyone remember the Majestic all nighter on Deansgate (I think) - next to a casino.

Best concert was Stax tour with Otis, Booker T, Arthur Conley, Eddie Floyd and Carla Thomas at the Palace. Also 'Little Stivie Wonder at Belle Vue. Fantastic days.

Tony 'Albert' Swettenham - 21/10/10

I remember the Manor Lounge very well. Distinctly remember my sister and I queuing up to see PJ Proby, who (in typical PJ Proby fashion) never turned up. My favourite band was "Them". Fantastic. 

I remember when the "Pretty Things" were playing there one night and one of Viv Andrews' drumsticks went flying out of his hand and into the crowd. 

My friend immediately picked it up and shoved it down the front of her blouse. Viv refused to carry on playing until he got his drumstick back (although he had a spare!) - what a sulk that was. He never got it back though. GREAT TIMES.

Joanie Thompson - 30/11/10

Memory of The Manor Lounge. 1965/6 Played, with Studio One, same bill with Dave Berry (Crying Game) My Vox AV30 amp blew up. Borrowed the Dave Berry group amp. Turned the special lights on and I recall I couldn't see the fret board. (just about made it.)

Alan Thom - 3/1/11

I worked in the cloakroom at the Manor Lounge and we had such wonderful times.

We met many guests. The most memorable were the Kinks and Long John Baldry - what a Lovely guy he was. I remember the Kinks had to come in through the Cinema there were that many screaming fans trying to get a piece of the Lovely Lads also. Dave Berry was great.

My brother also played there supporting Tom Jone with his group Dick Turpin and the Highway Men.

Many many great memories I will never forget at the grand young age of 69

Dorothy Hogan(Grice) - now living in Wales - 17/7/11

I was the drummer of the OUTRIDERS from Hazel Grove and a founder member of the band. We worked all over the country gig after gig whilst trying to hold down day jobs. Worked at the Manor Lounge and Kingfisher owned by Reg Pickstock, great character.

The heat, the sweat, the electric atmosphere of both Reg's clubs, I personally preferred the Kingfisher much better atmosphere and not quite as smelly as the ML.

Had some great times with the guys and of course all the gals. Reforming in 2012 for one last blast!! God help us.

Chris Hallworth - 5/8/11

I lived very near to the Manor Lounge and saw many great groups there with my friend Cath, quite a few who have already been mentioned.
I also remember seeing Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Titch and I think the Small Faces, amongst others.

I was there the night Donovan played - his biggest fan I think! A few of us were allowed into the dressing room - if you can call it that - and I got his autograph and then spent ages talking to his mate Gypsy Dave (Mills) while we waited for him to come on, then he let me stand at the side of the stage with him behind the barriers. I can remember it was a difficult night for Donovan because some idiots in the audience kept booing him from the start and shouting out that he wasn't as good as Dylan, who he never tried to be like if they actually listened to his music. I thought he was great though, and have just been down this June to see him play at the Royal Albert Hall doing a one off concert of his Sunshine Superman album - what a great night that was.

I didn't go in to the Manor to see PJ Proby for some reason, but my friend and I waited ages outside for hime to come out, which he eventually did and was rushed into a waiting car by some policemen.

The Manor Lounge was the first 'proper' club I went to, then a year or so later I joined the Oasis and would go to whichever had the group or act on I fancied seeing most! Happy, happy days.

Jen Barnes - 7/9/11

Donovan at the Manor Lounge wasn't good, but that was the fault of the club and the sound system. Donovan is/was a very underated artist.

We (the Toggery Five) once worked a venue (I think it was Basildon 'New Town'). We had a great night, great show, brought the house down. Afterwards we found some bikes under the stage which we raced around the dance floor after it was closed with a few of the locals. This kid who was racing too, came and chatted for a while explaining he was singer/guitar-vocalist with ambition to be like us.

A few years later we were playing Top Of The Pops in Manchester with Jimmy Saville and some other star entertainers, including Donovan. After the show Donovan approached me. 'Hi Graham, how you doing?'. 'How do you know my name, Donovan?'. 'Remember when we raced each other round the dance floor on the bikes at Basildon? Nice to see you again!' Wow! What a lovely guy. Now he was a superstar and we were still stuck in the mud but what a true gentleman!

GRAHAM (Toggery Five) - 23/1/12

Saw The Walker Brothers at the Manor Lounge - fantastic. Good memories of the Sinking Ship (saw Hendrix). A friend of my mum's laundered Tom Jones' shirts when he appeared at the Manor Lounge. Also so Elton John at Stockport College. He wore a yellow tail coat and stood on top of the piano to sing. We all sat or stood on the floor.

Janet McDonough - 6/4/12

Fantastic atmosphere Small Faces exceptional, saw Reg Presley dragged off stage by fans, great times.

David Garnett - 18/4/12

We used to go every week if you went on certain mid week days you got cheap tickets for weekend and then free tickets for the following week. Played right you could make 5 shillings last a whole month. Saw most of the bands and some years ago met up with Rob who was the drummer with Julie Driscoll and the Steam Packet who went on to play as backing drummer for many of the big names including Union Gap and Young Girl.

Val Gilstin (was Bower) - 28/4/12

I remember the Small faces gig. Must have been early om because Jimmy Winston was still on keyboards. Steve Marriott broke his guitar strap and finished the set (?) balancing it on one knee. The DJ on a friday evening was called John Lewis I think (?) Also saw the Action, Steampacket, Cream, Them and many others.

And if you lived on the south side of Manchester does anyone else remember Graham Bond appearing at Mirrlees Social Club, midweek in the summer of 65 ? I think it was something like Stockport blues club. Dick Heckstall Smith on sax and Baker and Bruce on bass and drums.
There was also the Bamboo Club in Hazel Grove. In 1967 I saw Ten Years After there on a Monday night. Also the savoy brown blues band and of course the Mike Cotton Sound were regulars. 

David Lindsey - 18/9/12

Remember seeing Brian Auger & the Trinity with Julie Driscoll also Graham Bond organisation with Dick Heckstall Smith particularly memorable. A great Liverpool group The Chants I remember too.

Peter Fone - 25/7/13

Janet, above, mentions seeing Elton John at Stockport College, this of course was before he was famous. I was DJ that night, much before Elton came on, and never having heard of him, I finished my spot, packed up and went. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, oh well never mind, but I still bore people with "I was on the same bill as Elton John".

Dave Moore - 4/8/13

I remember seeing dave dee & co also the troggs &the smallfaces,getting my hand stamped lounge or manor &going out to the blossoms or the wheatsheaf great times - 
still living in Stockport.

Steve Widdowson

I met lots of girls there but saw Bo Didley amongst many more exciting times,then we had to go to the tabernacle.

Mike Redmund





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