A very popular Brighton band

The Syd Dean band was very popular in Brighton throughout the 1940s and 1950s. Syd and his band were resident at the Regent Ballroom for many years and appeared at venues all around Brighton. Unfortunately we do not have details of the individuals and locations in these photographs. Let us know, by using the make a comment link, if you have any information about the people and locations shown in any of the images held in the Syd Dean Gallery below.

All the images are from the private collection of Trevor Chepstow

Editor’s note: We are not able to credit the individual photographers of these images but if you believe that you own the copyright to any of the images shown, please contact us so we can credit you accordingly. We do acknowledge the work of Mr Ernie Charman who prepared some of the images shown, while collaborating with Syd Dean on a proposed book which sadly was never published.

Comments about this page

  • My father, Frank Booth, was in the Syd Dean Orchestra as a pianist and then, I think, he formed his own band as he also played at the Regent. I am currently tracing his family tree so if anyone remembers him, please contact me elainef@animalfriends.co.uk. Many thanks Elaine

    By Elaine Fairfax (27/10/2007)
  • Re Elaine’s comment about her father, Frank Booth, in the mid 50s if you got to the Regent early, the small band would be playing. I would sit right behind Frank and watch his playing closely, and I learned some of his pianistic tricks, one of which I still use when playing semi-pro and amateur piano.

    By Tony Hill (21/10/2008)
  • Did Jill Day sing with the Syd Dean band?

    By Clark (06/01/2009)
  • I used to go dancing at the Regent back in 1962-1964. I remember dancing with a guy named Dave Brewer and I wonder if he might remember me, Colleen Dobson. I live in Vancouver, Canada now. I now know what is meant by “the good old days”. We used to love the dancing up the Regent, to the Sid Dean orchestra.

    By colleen (18/11/2009)
  • I remember being at the Regent as a teenager, all us guys would walk around the dance floor eying up the girls, having bets who could get the prettiest girl to dance!! We spotted one girl who was a knockout, the three mates of mine all asked for a dance and were all turned down, me being a little bit crafty, had noticed that each time she was asked, she turned to the slightly older girl with her and spoke in Italian to her. I realised that she was being chaperoned and had to be very careful, so I asked the older one for permission, and was granted a dance – hooray! I saw this girl a couple of times more and it turned out that she was the granddaughter of a local ice cream maker called Gizzi ,who had a shop at the bottom of Edward Street. Free ice cream for me!

    By duffy watkins (19/03/2011)
  • I remember you Colleen. My mum Winnie SMITH was great friends with your mum when you lived Southall Avenue.You have a sister Rita. Hope life is treating you well.

    By Jennifer Tonks (19/03/2011)
  • I remember it well Duffy.Great times we had there. Remember at the end of the evening the march of the mods? Very lucky it had a bouncy floor. Yes, us girls would walk around the outer edges to see if we fancied anyone. If we did it was the usual “my friend likes you” while mortified in case he did not share your enthusiasm. What times they were. A different, safer era. I remember a few girls and I getting a lift home, stopping for fish ‘n’ chips up Elm Grove, eating them on the racehill, washed down with coca cola, and all being dropped home safely. Happy days.

    By Jennifer Tonks (19/03/2011)
  • There was a chap, something to do with the greengrocers and fish and chip shop up left in St James Street.To my shame all these years later, I recall him taking me to the Regent, and abandoning him when I met up with an ex. If you’re out there sorry.

    By Jennifer Tonks (19/03/2011)
  • Having looked at google streets, I now can say the fish and chip shop was 73 High Street. Next door now is Brightons Women’s Centre.The Greengrocers was on the corner of High Street and St James Street. This is now a shop called ‘Silver’. Next to it is 38 St Mary Convenience store. Just up a bit was of course the wonderfull pie shop. Anyone for a beano pie? Ended an evening beautifully.

    By Jennifer Tonks (19/03/2011)
  • Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way of getting all of us old rememberers together, in one place. Bet there would be a hell of a lot of stories flying around. Pipe dreams, maybe.

    By Duffy Watkins (24/06/2011)
  • What great days at the Regent Ballroom and later at the Suite. Anyone out there who remembers me?

    By Victor Hoare (05/01/2013)
  • My father (Billy Dean) played along with Syd Dean, he was a session drummer and later, after doing many things, went on joining “the untamed band” frontman Lindsay Muir in “The Liza Band” who played regularly at the Reigate Manor in East Grinstead. If anyone remembers please share your memories as I was too young to watch my father ever play professionally.

    By Sacha Walker (03/03/2013)
  • Does anyone remember the bands before Syd Dean? My father, Cyril Cook (trumpet) and uncles Cyril (piano) and Arthur Brooker (saxophone) played at Sherrys and the Regent. I remember being at the Regent aged 3, dancing with my mother and watching my Dad and Uncle Cyril playing on stage. I would love to have a photo from those days if anyone could let me have a copy.

    By Averil Garritt (17/08/2014)
  • In 1948 I went to The Regent one Saturday evening. I had been there many times before and had wonderful dancing entertainment. On this visit I met a young lady who I fell in love with straight away, we were twenty  years old! We soon married and are still some sixty seven years later. THANK YOU REGENT!

    By John Booker (13/06/2016)

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