The passing of Tom Petty took one local back to his memories from the 1970’s of The Ship, as it was before it closed as a pub. Steve Kemp was involved in running the Barn Bar at the Ship. It ran from 1969-1978 when the pub was sold to a new licensee. “We were really the only pub in the area that played music” said Steve “We mainly played albums tracks until about 1976 when the punk and new wave explosion happened.

We also had nights dedicated to a particular artist; a Joni Mitchell night, Ry Cooder, Carole King, Little Feat, Pink Floyd etc. That is probably why we attracted all the local musicians from the area and from London. It was on the whole a rock music pub playing music from that era”.

The Barn Bar disco ran 7 nights a week as well as Sunday lunchtimes. Local ’names’ were regulars in the bar: Tom Jones, 
members of Mungo Jerry, The Jam and The Faces all came by. DJ’s were Alan C, John D, Steve K and the late Jimmy Vick.

The public were all music nuts. At the end of every year they were invited to vote for their top 3 singles of all time and their top 3 albums of the year. The selections were then played in the bar on Boxing Day. The list from 1977 brings back memories of that great musical era. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers came in at no19. The top 20 albums of 1977 as follows:
1. Stick to Me – Graham Parker and the Rumour
2. Rumours – Fleetwood Mac
3. Love you Live – The Rolling Stones
4. Never Mind the B——–s – The Sex Pistols
5. My Aim is True – Elvis Costello
6. Seconds Out – Genesis
7. Heroes – David Bowie
8. Bad Reputation – Thin Lizzy
9. Even in the Quietest Moment- Supertramp
10. Going for The One – Yes
11 Rock and Roll – Jonathan Richman
12 Rattus Norvegicus – The Stranglers
13 Aja – Steely Dan
14 Exodus – Bob Marley
15 Street Survivors – Lynyrd Skynyrd
16 Marquee Moon – Television
17 Show Some Emotion – Joan Armatrading
18 Time Loves a Hero – Little Feat
19 Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers (same)
20 American Stars n Bars by Neil Young
The voting slip itself is a thing of history. Above you will see one showing votes for the ‘Fave Platters’ from 1977. ‘Stairway to Heaven’ still without doubt a stand out single, to this day and certainly for decades to come.

Some of our younger readers may be wondering what all this is about. Records? Albums? It is lovely to see a comeback for the humble record, along with scratches and those fabulous album covers. What an era. “It was great fun while it lasted” says Steve.
Were you there? Do you remember?