Scarborough in a Changing World (1973)

On my last visit of the season to Grace Road I picked up a couple of old Cricketers (not cricketers) in the Friends of Grace Road shop – from December 1973 and the Spring Annual from 1975 (a relic from the days when cricket had seasons that co-incided with those of the natural world). 

Given a full set of Cricketers one could compile a wonderful alternative history of the game, by pushing the marginalia to the forefront – the things that must have seemed quite normal at the time, but have been turned by time and tide  into something rich and strange.

There is enough in these two issues alone to keep me going for quite a while (“Oh good!” – the Readership), but, as a taster, I was pleased to see some confirmation of my belief that the Doors had replaced the usual band at the 1964 Scarborough Festival and that this incident had inspired the song “Summer’s Almost Gone” (I outlined my theory here).

Gerald Pawle, from an article entitled “Scarborough in a Changing World”

“Not long ago, too, there was even a monstrous experiment on the North Marine Road ground itself, the Town Band being temporarily replaced by a gentleman performing on an electric organ!  Now, the Town Band may have had its detractors.  Its repertoire had not noticeably changed, to my knowledge, during the past forty years.  Many of the bandsmen did not seem to have changed, either, but their rendering of selections from Rose Marie and The Desert Song had an old world charm, the tempo according beautifully with the more studious innings of R.E.S. Wyatt, while their version of the Eton Boating Song had a tremulous quality which greatly moved all who heard this Festival anthem struggle to its noble conclusion.” 

The “gentleman performing on an electric organ” was, quite clearly, Ray Manzarek.


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