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Nostalgia: Theatre hosted chart-toppers when bands toured small venues

PUBLISHED: 19:04 26 March 2020

Bay City Rollers fans queuing up outside the Gaumont in May 1975 Picture: ARCHANT

Bay City Rollers fans queuing up outside the Gaumont in May 1975 Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

Over the decades, the Ipswich Gaumont played host to some of the biggest worldwide music stars.

The crowd ready to see David Essex perform at the Gaumont in November 1974 Picture: ARCHANTThe crowd ready to see David Essex perform at the Gaumont in November 1974 Picture: ARCHANT

Today – now the Regent – it still thrives, presenting major national touring shows as part of a wide variety of top quality entertainment all year round.

Part of the crowd at the Gaumont in Ipswich watching the Bay City Rollers perform Picture: ARCHANTPart of the crowd at the Gaumont in Ipswich watching the Bay City Rollers perform Picture: ARCHANT

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But when times were different and the top bands and singers criss-crossed the country touring provincial theatres, the venue in St Helen’s Street was able to stage shows regulary featuring chart-topping artists from the UK and USA.

Ozzy Osbourne at the Ipswich Gaumont in 1995 Picture: ARCHANTOzzy Osbourne at the Ipswich Gaumont in 1995 Picture: ARCHANT

Nowadays bands focus on huge arenas and the old venues miss out.

The Beatles visit the Gaumont Theatre Ipswich in 1964 Picture: ARCHANTThe Beatles visit the Gaumont Theatre Ipswich in 1964 Picture: ARCHANT

But back in the 1960s the Gaumont (which at the time was also one of the town’s three cinemas) hosted the Beatles, and in the 70s and 80s the Bay City Rollers, Ian Dury and the Blockheads, Elvis Costello, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Gary Numan, the Boomtown Rats, The Clash, Damned, Stranglers, Thin Lizzy and Stiff Little Fingers, plus Tina Turner.

Thin Lizzy live at the Gaumont April 1975 Picture: ARCHANTThin Lizzy live at the Gaumont April 1975 Picture: ARCHANT

Did you see these acts? To share your memories, email judy.rimmer@archant.co.uk

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