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Hungry Years
Image reproduced with permission from Brighton History Centre
Hungry Years
Photo by Mike Snewin

Comments about this page

  • Pepa and John gone, the years gone, the memories haven’t. This place is a part of Brighton history and the many many folk who ‘lived’ there in the night. This wasn’t just a club; this was a community. Happy and sad times shared, and a hell of a lot of beer (well I did).

    By N/A (01/01/1900)
  • When they changed this place they took the ‘Rock’ out of Brighton!

    By N/A (01/01/1900)
  • 1975: started my life as a Hungry Yearser. I continued until it shut. Pepa, John, Paul, Christina are all missed. Would love to hear a HY Classic track album. Any suggestions?

    By Dave (27/07/2006)
  • A classic Hungry years soundtrack album? Nothing to it! Here are my suggestions: Freebird by Lynyrd Skynyrd, Rock & Roll by Led Zeppelin, More than A Feeling by Boston, Paranoid by Black Sabbath, Don’t Fear The Reaper by Blue Oyster Cult, and of course, Stairway To Heaven. How many other Brighton youths got their first proper snog dancing to that one, eh?

    By Alan Knight (14/08/2006)
  • Good evening and welcome to the Hungry Years! I said that more times than I care to remember – big part of my early life!

    By Stuart - HYDJ (27/08/2006)
  • A pal of Pauls…good times and fond memories.

    By Nigel (25/10/2006)
  • Hiya guys. Funny how life goes on and your heart still sinks when you think of how much the years are missed. I had so many great times here and made friends that I cant forget. Even if we lost contact would love to see them all again and have a real years night out. The best years of my life were here and it breaks my heart to see it gone…………..thanks to all who went and painted the portrait of my youth and for the years for the soundtrack to my life.

    By Ivan (09/11/2006)
  • What a place – it was home from home. I used to hang out with Josh, Nikki, Bill etc. Really miss all the DJs and other staff. I was there the night it closed, and afterwards sat outside on the bench crying. Have since moved away to Devon and got married but would love to get in touch with people – trying to plan a night at BR (HTH) around July 07 for my 30th. Hope to see EVERYONE there!

    By Steph (16/01/2007)
  • Can’t agree more with the previous statement: “When they changed this place they took the ‘Rock’ out of Brighton!”. Spot on.    Every time I drive past this, I smile and laugh at all the happy times I had with my lifetime mates in that building. Yet my heart also sinks at the thought of its passing.  Sadly missed.

    By Tim (28/01/2007)
  • I often pass this place, I used to go there in the late 1970s. I always remember Wilf; he came to a very sad end. He was a really nice man.

    By Julie (08/02/2007)
  • I met my wife Lisa here in 1977. We’re still married! I remember John and Pepa, also an old guy who was real friendly. I don’t remember his name, but he was a short silver haired guy and he loved chatting with us youngsters. I learned to play Asteroids there. I rode a 1952 BSA Golden Flash, and I remember all the motorcycles parked down the east side of the building. One day, when the old Beezer was out of commision, I rode a bicycle down there. When it was time to leave, I was waiting with Lisa at the bus stop, and someone stole that bike from me right in front of my eyes. He thought we were both waiting for the bus. Well, long story short, I beat the xxxx out of him.
    I also remember when Millwall F.C. beat (or got beaten by) Albion, and some of those people came down to the Hungry Years on a rampage. Lisa and I hid in the bus stop. Ah, those were the days.

    By Kevin Bushby (17/05/2007)
  • What has happened to our Old Brighton? God do I miss this place. Had some cracking times and met some cracking people. I still play air guitar better than a real one but now, if I shake me head, it hurts. I’d love to meet up again with Mick, Angie, Tracy, Rosie, Brian, Kev, and Ray. Better stop there, got a lump in me throat. The Years is dead. Long live the Years.

    By Kelvin Healey (07/01/2008)
  • I worked on the door between 1973 and 1975 and I can honestly say I don’t remember anybody else’s name who I worked with apart from Richard Holmes who ran the disco then. Happy days. My musical memory has to be “Reeling in the Years” by Steely Dan. I can also remember the pies we sold which enabled the place to have a late licence to which the cook would sometimes add extra “ingredients” which made a few people happy!

    By Rick (14/01/2008)
  • The Years – what a legend! My days from 1977-79 are amongst the best times of my life. I felt deemed AWOL unless ‘on parade’ there at least three times a week! I seldom saw any trouble, apart from Millwall’s tear-up there one Saturday. I remember the punk sections including a number by the Electric Chairs. My poor body the next day was more battered than a ton of fried cod! Remember our Sunday footy match at Preston Park? I still have the photos I took (I later joined the RAF as a photographer). I feel bereaved over the demise of what was arguably the best music venue in town, and I strongly fancy that if it was ever restored to its former glory, it would be bouncing every night. Happy days and very fond memories!

    By James Mitchell (16/01/2008)
  • I’m researching The Years as part of my degree (as a mature student!) and it’s brought back some great memories. We will never see its like again! Shame but its good to know that you were there in the day! I Miss everyone!

    By Maz (02/04/2008)
  • Great place, great times, great music and great people.  The 70’s and The Hungry Years will always be the best years of my life! Steely Dan are the best!

    By Dave Batchelor (23/05/2008)
  • I still miss the Years.  I met my wife Heather there back in 1996, we now have two children.  I still think about the amazing nights we all had in there and unfortunately I only experienced the place from 1994 – 1999.  I do still see John and Pepa walking around the town once in a while.

    By Glenn (25/05/2008)
  • I see Ivan’s got his comment in so I’d best do the same – veteran since 1979, worked the door on various occasions, the bar on others and even the DJ booth when Graeme wanted a drink/slash/dance with a girl. Got to know John and Pepa real well – and Paul of course (‘anyone for a road trip?’) – miss it like mad!   And I, like many others, met my wifey Laura there too, too many years ago to mention. So here’s to DJ Graeme (you love to hate him), Laura, Ive, Justin and Andy (Wiggy) (were they ever apart?), Julie, Na, Nikki and Wheat, Julie and Matt, Andy C and Terry, Marcus and Helen, Dave, Mark C & Lisa, Kain and Sally, Anton, Boots, Los, Mr Legget, Big Nick, Nick MC, oh and anybody else who has ever been there and experienced a true ‘family’ of friends.  What a place – never to see its like again……

    By Mark Black (24/06/2008)
  • I’ve been to Brighton in ’94 as one in a million of language students. I will never ever forget the place where I’ve made friends for life! We met a biker club from the Midlands and met up with them months later when they did a tour through Germany. I will never forget the people in our street, when 32 Harleys came driving down to my house! Since then I return to Brighton at least once a year, but it will never be the same again without the real HY. All the best from Germany.

    By Michael (11/07/2008)
  • I spent nearly every Friday and Saturday there from 1976-80. The DJ was Stewart Sheppard, also remember Colin and Chris Mitchell, Kevin Lewis, Wizzer ‘Baldy’ Bob, big Ron, Kev Stone and Shaun Bingham, Des Corlett and Chunky John, black Kev, the late Bill Barnes and loads of others. The silver haired gentleman was Colin who would always stand you a pint. The carpet was filthy and soaked in beer but the atmosphere was always great. This pie and mash used to end up getting chucked everywhere…soundtrack of my life!

    By Martin Owens (31/07/2008)
  • What about us girls, same period… Sue, Jane, Jackie and Gill?

    By Sue (10/11/2008)
  • It’s about time, we the rockers/bikers of Brighton brought this place back to life.  It was the best rock club ever. So lets do it.  Mail me, if you interested … Lets show John and Pepa they ran the best nightclub in Brighton for many years.

    By Worzel (16/12/2008)
  • Well, reeling in the years. Meet my wife Teresa here, played plastic with Lloyd. Remember the Mash potato and pea fights, eat the pies use the plastic forks to flick the peas…. Fond days. Still have a bit of the plaster stored at home (Teresa pulled it off the wall). Prime years 1972 to 1980. Van expeditions to reading festival. Free Bird, Hush, Paranoid, Supertramp, Ozark Mountain Daredevils. Do you remember…. Skinny dipping under the pier (he he).

    By Ian Elliott (28/01/2009)
  • Blimey! It brings it all back, reading these comments. If the truth be told, I don’t think it ever went away. Best nights of my life were spent there, so thanks John, Pepa and family. (Even though Pepa barred me a couple of times. My God that woman had a memory for faces).

    By Gary Green (18/02/2009)
  • Re: Mark Black
    Not the same karate kid who went a bit OTT at a Christmas ‘staff’ party?

    By Gary Green (11/05/2009)
  • Reading the above comments takes me back 35 years. Now married with kids and living in Devon but the early ’70s seem like only yesterday. For a couple of years I probably spent most evenings at the Years (the years when I was supposed to be studying for my A Levels which is probably why I failed them) with Nigel Thomas, Steve Andrews, Ian Beattie, Chris Docherty, Mick Adams, Gary Nunn, Peter Sindon, the Montegue Brothers (Bob, Scott and Steve). Nigel formed a band – actually a succession of bands – Fox, Freeway and Isabella with Ian Winton, Steve Farley and Nick Ripley and they performed at the Years (as well as other venues both suitable and not) on a regular basis. I recall Stuart the DJ who lived near me in Coldean. Music was usually pretty good (the usual heavies such as Sabbath, Hendrix, Purple etc) though I recall one DJ had an obsession about Paul McCartney’s Band on the Run and played it at any opportunity. I well remember the pies, mash and peas – and the plastic forks. Girls I recall included Kathy Apps, Liz Youthed (went out with Nigel and me, now lives in Canada) and Karen Taylor. So many memories – staggering home in the early hours, throwing up in the side street round the corner from the front entrance after too many beers, mouthing off at someone and nearly getting a kicking…! I last set foot in the Years around 1978 and I often wondered what it would be like to go back, but it wouldn’t have been the same, so I resisted the temptation – I prefer to recall it the way it was. “Throwing away the time…”

    By John Wilkin (19/05/2009)
  • I spent time at the beginning of the seventies every week upstairs watching the Harry Strutters Hot Rhythm Orchestra. This local band also played at the King & Queen, Escape and Bathing Machine.

    By Arthur Johnson (19/05/2009)
  • “Throwing away the time…”? Of course I meant “Stowing away the time” – maybe my subconscience is trying to tell me something. After I sent the above comment I remembered that the Top Rank Suite tried to set up a regular “heavy rock” evening on Wednesdays in the summer of 1976, in competition with the Years. Of course it didn’t last – the atmosphere was completely wrong and the staff looked constantly horrified at the “long haired, denim-clad” customers playing air-guitar! However, an excellent venue was the Crypt bar at Sussex University – but I’d better not stray too far “off topic”.

    By John Wilkin (20/05/2009)
  • I came from London to live in Brighton for 3 years and when I found The Hungry Years I became part of the furniture… 1989 to 1992. Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays 10pm -2am I have a nice Photo of my friends there standing at the bar, Ruth, Kevin, Dave, Big Dave (I’ll have a half), and Adrian (call me Noddy!). I also remember Sam, Louise and her friend Louise, Rachel, Sharron (with a big black bike), Paula, Jane and many more. If I win the Lotto… The Hungry Years will run again playing all the classic metal from 70s and 80s. Thanks for the site, nice memories.

    By Paul Bown (16/06/2009)
  • Spent loads of great nights down the years and seeing ac/dc at wembley took me back to my youth…..must be getting old, never thought I would be sentimental but thinking about headbanging away with james, glen, later richie, shout going out to you ivan – loved your comment – happy days and nights in the all night caf after…………george

    By Georgina Collins (05/07/2009)
  • My band in the 1980s was named Hungry Years. Would like to get back to jam or put some of the music up to remind folks what it was like in the good old days. Brings back old memories that pub

    By Don (08/07/2009)
  • Spent a lot of time here in 1986-89. My mate Nigel and I used to get picked out in the crowd waiting to get in by the owners, and would get to bypass the hoards. I think it was because we were polite, no trouble and spent loads on pop! It is the only time I have felt like a VIP. My favourite venue for a damn good evening.

    By Paul Bartlett (09/08/2009)
  • Re my first message on the 09/07/2009. I found an old tape of my band Hungry Years (named after the pub) when I was clearing out a drawer. It’s been there for 26 years. It was recorded on an old tape deck live in the early 80’s. It was a bit distorted but not too bad so I uploaded it to youtube if anyone wants to listen.

    By Don (15/08/2009)
  • Yes, I miss the Hungry Years, very much so. I was there in the late 70s to early 80s. If we can’t go back, then at least we can all teach the young what real music was all about. Plastic glasses and good music, but don’t sit by the speakers if you want to chat up a girl. WHAT DID YOU SAY?

    By Mark Edwards (20/10/2009)
  • I bought a small bike in 1981 and got into heavy metal and went to the Hungry Years to hang around with the ‘bigger’ bikers. I remember it closing for a while when they did the place up and added new lights. I played Space Invaders in between playing air guitar to Rainbow & Saxon. I am embarrassed to say I deserted the place for Coasters in 1982 when that opened, but fondly remember my year of Saturday nights at the Hungry Years.

    By Simon (28/11/2009)
  • I have such fond memories of The Hungry Years. It was a huge part of my teenage years. I made many good friends, and I’m pleased to say I’m still in contact with most of them.

    By Tracey (13/01/2010)
  • Just heard that John and Pepa are organising a 10 year reunion on 3 July. Apparently details to be posted on HY w/site next month! Rock On! Can’t wait.

    By Greig (06/02/2010)
  • Yes I can confirm that there is to be a 10 year reunion on the 3rd of July, the Hungry Years website is now taking shape and all the old pictures have been transfered from the old site and are now available to have a look at. See if you can spot yourself. Further detail to be announced by the end of March.

    By Graham (17/02/2010)
  • Sussex Police Detectives are working on Operation Anagram which is gathering any information on convicted murderer Peter TOBIN, whilst he lived in Brighton in the 60s, 70s and the 80s. Police are appealing for anyone who may have any contact with him, no matter how small, to make contact on 0845 60 70 999 and quote Operation Anagram and leave your details so that detectives can speak to you. Tobin was known to visit the Hungry Years in the mid 80’s and live in many locations in Brighton and Hove including living at a hotel on the seafront near Kemptown. Police would particularly like to speak with anyone who was part of the Rising Sun Bikers Club. Tobin went by many different names so please check out the following websites to see photographs of him throughout his years.

    By DC Armstrong (02/03/2010)
  • I was there several times in 1979, when I was there on holiday. I’m Dutch and I really likes the hungry years. Thanks for the great holiday.

    By Petra pvdvb (05/03/2010)
  • My brother Adrian Ross used to work on the door here many many years ago.  Shame they closed it down.

    By Lyssa Ross (21/03/2010)
  • I spent my youth down the ‘Years’ in the 70s and early 80s. It was the best time of my life. Some great times and never any trouble (until Millwall turned up). The summer of ’76 was amazing. As soon as the place closed, everybody would run for the sea and dive in fully clothed. The place did close down in the 80s and reopened as a non Rock pub but all the usual people turned up and the poor DJ was booed off and Stuart had to return with his Rock anthems. I had a lot of mates to ‘headbang’ with including Phil ‘Whizzer’ Wells, Paul ‘Sivver’ South, Big Ronny Pollard, Dave Aldis, Steve ‘Basher’ Bastable, John and Mark Harris, Pete Pullen, Steve Hawkes, Baldy Bob Anderson etc. Some tracks will always remind me of the ‘Years’ including the slowies like ‘Year of the Cat’ by Al Stewart and ‘If you leave me now’ by Chicago, which was a great way of pulling. We organised a Football match between boys and girls down Preston Park and I still have the team photos. We started a football team from the ‘Years’ called “Paraletic Athletic” and played over 100 matches. Great days!!!. The only Rock I’ve had since was down the Portland Pub - but even that has closed down. I still have the memories though.

    By chris mitchell (12/05/2010)
  • Pictures of some of your memories on The Years website, Chris.

    By Dave B (16/05/2010)
  • Wow, I loved the Hungry Years. I went there with my boyfriend Carl (now ex husband) from about 1976. Every Wednesday and Saturday we’d go there and meet up with Simon, Jemma and Steve for great nights of dancing and fun. I have such good memories of the nights we spent down there. Bring it back.

    By Debbie Bowden (previously Gilbody) (18/06/2010)
  • Paul and Anna, remember the time we hung fish to your mum and dad’s bar towels?

    By Bry and Gez (19/06/2010)
  • We spent all our teen lives down the years. Got married at St Mary’s Church, Lower Rock Gardens, invited Pepper and John, and friends from Hungry Years to our wedding in the early 1980s. We’re still together today and still rocking. Anybody we know from those great days still out there?

    By Bry and Gez (19/06/2010)
  • God I loved that place! It was about 1973 or 74. Me Alan, Tony and Ray (all from the Ruislip area) used to go tenting at weekends in Brighton. We met some German ( Koln) girls and I fell in love with Angie…but she never loved me back…oil of patchouli, light and bitter, the Rolling Stones (not live unfortunately)…God I loved that place!

    By Phil Groves (05/09/2010)
  • The Years was a great place to hang out as a teenager, I went every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday from 1977 to 1979! Stuart and Lloyd were the DJs and in those days I spent more time dancing than drinking to such bands as Rainbow,(Rainbow Rising) Led Zep (Led Zep 2), Queen (Tie your Mother Down), Boston etc etc!! Probably explains why I have neck problems now from all the head banging!

    By Janet Maguire (Harland) (24/01/2011)
  • A big hello to John Wilkin (20/5/09). Great to see our names mentioned, you fine man! Do you remember slapping a fish cake on your knee in a Greek Restaurant in 1973 then legging it at warp speed up West St? Nige, Chris, Pete Sinden and Garry Nunn and I are all still in touch; I’ve got all the photos from the 1970s intact and will be publishing my memoirs soon. And – I’m working as a community participation worker in Coldean of all places! Get in touch, John!

    By steve andrews (21/02/2011)
  • Hi Steve – pleased to see a comment from you. My email is It would be good to hear from you.

    By John Wilkin (16/05/2011)
  • Wow, what wonderful memories, drinking Harp beer and eating a Cornish Pasty at midnight, listening to Hawkwind with some very important friends that I hope to see in June this year, the 10th at the King and Queen. I´m coming over. Would love to meet anyone from that time Best Wishes

    By Bob Montague (24/05/2011)
  • The years brings back so many happy memories. Great music and friends. Just reading all the comments brings it all back. Met my wife here in the early eighties. It’s true what they say, you do not know how good something was till it’s gone.

    By Russell Clark (14/09/2011)
  • Did the years in the early 80s with Andy poo; had some cracking times and we still talk about it now.At 47 years of age I still listen to the same music but I use it for running as it makes me go a lot faster, and I still play air guitar whilst running! Head banger forever, thanks to the HUNGRY YEARS. Great memories.

    By TURKEY TREVOR DAY (04/10/2011)
  • Aaaaah, the ol’ Watery Beers! I’ve lost count of the times I stood, sat or slumped there – invariably cussing out the tunes. Or the crowd. Or the drink. It was, however, the undoubted epicentre of my social life in Brighton from ’83 (as a very underage drinker) til ’94 (although by this time my visits had become way less frequent and I’d moved away) and I’ve got some great memories of terrific times there: Bringing the latest/importedest /hottest/coolest/ (in our minds) Rock and Metal vinyl (ask yer mum and dad, younger readers) with like-minded obsessives and requesting that Paul play it (invariably, and graciously, he would accede. As long it was before the 10 o’clock ‘kick-off’. Bless him.); crafty hash pipes in the khazis; zero-tolerance of band-flyers (I still feel a bit guilty about one of our number being ejected for handing out while the rest of us scarpered to the bar!); some lovely wimmin and the er… quite ‘staggering’ number of friends who I either made there or would meet there (many of whom I’m still in touch with). Probably made one or two enemies as well, mind, but there you go. What I think really made the place – apart from the greatest Artex job in the history of decorating – was a sense of inclusivity: dress code and attitude free. Friends who were by no means Rockers enjoyed a night out down there. Certainly, a little part of ‘old’ Brighton died when the place closed down. Never mind the cathedrals: a city’s not a city without a regular, dedicated rock club/venue. God bless the HY and all who sailed in her. It’s got me wondering now about the Air Balloon at Portsmouth and Boogies at Southampton…

    By Nat (31/10/2011)
  • I frequented the Years in the early to mid 90s. Used to drive down from East Grinstead with a few mates. Never a friendlier place have I had the pleasure to see since. Brilliant music and atmosphere. I would love to see it return to it’s former glory.

    By Rob (27/01/2012)
  • My mother worked in the Hungry Years in the ’50s but it was known by another name. Can anyone remember its name? 

    By kathleen catt (28/01/2012)
  • Just uploaded another song from my old band Hungry Years named after the pub. If anyone wants to hear it here’s the link

    By Don (11/02/2012)
  • I started going down ‘The Years’ in 1985 and spent so so many wonderful nights headbanging, laughing, drinking and generally having a blast with all my friends. I even met my future wife (Sarah) there in March 1989. I have just finished a ‘Hungry Years’ playlist on my ipod with 117 classic Hungry Years tracks. I couldn’t make it to the last night ‘coz me and Sarah were off travelling to the states for 5 months, our last night there was the weekend before the last night… I still can’t believe it’s closed. A few places have tried to take over – ‘The Greenhouse Effect’, Hove Town Hall –  but ‘The Hungry Years will always be the greatest rock club of them all. They were some of the best nights of my life!

    By Rob (20/02/2012)
  • Kathleen Catt – I think it was called the Arlington.

    By John Wilkin (11/04/2012)
  • @Rob – I was also a HY regular in the mid 80’s, probably air guitared right next to you 🙂 Please post a link to that play-list, brilliant idea! Michael

    By Michael (28/12/2012)
  • you know you are getting old when the ‘Years counts as history! I can remember them playing U2 New Years Day a lot, and Boston’s More Than a Feeling, plus Venus by Shocking Blue in addition to those tracks mentioned above. Hedgie was a fixture (Dave Balzas). The walls were blood red gloss, and it cost about £1.70 to get in in 1986/7 I think. I think a pint of snakebite and black was about the same price.

    By Nickie Preston (28/12/2012)
  • What an amusing and amorphous mixture of reminiscences. I worked behind the bar and on the door when the HY was the Arlington. I worked [sometimes] on the door and behind the bar when it became the HY, known rather grandly as The Hungry Years Gathering Place, initially a tax loss for a couple of London entrepreneurs. They had Vince’s Plum in town. Managed by Mark, the son of a barrister and the ex potman. I got the franchise for the club, and started to put on bands – Visitor2035 and quite a few others. I nearly got The Scorpions, but although they liked the idea, it did not work out, that’s rock and roll. I built the DJ’s ‘corner’ myself, and also the speakers, containing Tannoy 12″ bass, as I recall. The mixer was built for me by a friend and we used a pair of Quad amps with Technics decks. It sounded good! [at the time]. I left to live in Norway and Spain. When I returned [skint] I was asked to work on the door, which I did until 1980 when I took a pub in St. James St. I was best friends with Adrian Ross, who I will never forget. He was a great athlete and the most genuine guy I ever encountered ! I was on the door with him when Millwall turned up and it was not very pretty. They came equipped with hammers and axes and a compressed air speargun, which they fired thro’ the door. The hole was there for years. [Years !!!!!]. We had to eventually hide out in the staff loo as we were outnumbered 30 /02. Not good odds! The local constabulary wanted to blame us because one of the ‘football supporters’ was injured. What a shame! He even had the cheek to come back for his jacket the next day. I spent more than ten years working at The Years, mostly for the Christoforou family, and I do not regret it for one minute. I even tried to buy the place when they were leaving, but was outbid. They are a super family, and I gather that Paul has a very successful hotel on Cyprus. I could say much more, but that’s it ! Be Cool. Peter BRYAN.

    By Peter BRYAN (11/03/2013)
  • Great to read everyone’s memories about the Years. I started going there about 1977 as a regular and then on and off until about 1990. Hi to Ivan, Pete etc etc. I always remember Georgia’s 18th birthday drink when she had to DJ afterwards – we gave her a few too many drinks – oops! There was pool, space-invaders, asteroids, Pepa, John, Paul, sticky floor, brilliant music, getting in for free, chocolate cake, trips to the Hard Rock café after closing and many more. If I ever win the lottery my dream is to reopen a Hungry Years!

    By Mary (12/04/2013)
  • Surprised and sad that nobody has mentioned the Panama Red promotion days at The Hungry Years. From Ducks Deluxe to Chilli Willi, through Daddy Longlegs and Bees Make Honey, the 1973-5 Panama Red promotions saw pretty well every pub rock band except The Hot Rods and Dr Feelgood play, including many of the people who later became stalwarts of Stiff Records. Ace (of ‘How Long’ fame) got their record contract because of a gig there. A missing piece of history (though not for long perhaps). Feel free to mail me at if you have any memories or memorabilia of those gigs – I’m working on a web site dedicated to just that.

    By Dirigibledave (28/05/2013)
  • Hello, I was one of the barmen working upstairs. I was there 1978 or 79. I want to say that was my best time being in Brighton. I will never forget the memories I had in there. I remember all those wonderful customers-rockers there. I still have and listen to all records of all we were listening to there. I was very lucky to be there and meet all those people in Hungry Years.

    By Spiros (04/06/2013)
  • Hey Martin, I can’t believe it again. I found you on the Bhasvic site and now this! far out!! “Kevin Lewis, Kev Stone and Shaun Bingham” I remember these names and can definitely put a face to Kev Stone. The Hungry Years – geeeez- It was my home too from the first time I sneaked out of the boarding school toilet window and joined some day boys from school, that was it, I was hooked. Where do you start, I had highs (LOL) and lows there. Music was the best ever, my favs were all the above but did anyone remember the last song we always had? As I remember the choice was usually small: Lazy Sunday Afternoon, Itchycoo Park, Hi Ho Silver Lining, Freebird. Either a real head banging end or a real freaky dance end or a great hold hands in a ring kiks in the air end. I remember the many chapters on visit, Devils Henchmen, German Nomads, Road Rats, All England HA, and the local guys the Sussex Hogs, and others. Then the scooter wars down the road outside the Years when they flooded out of the cinema after Quadraphoenia, wow, bikes and scooters out the front of the Years, leathers and mod parkas, that was a fun night. I also remember that night the Millwall supporters came by, …. hmm… that was a bad night, we went upstairs, saw chairs and beer glasses floating through the air, a guy with a gun was threatening a barman, (apparently he was asking what team he supported – I know which I would have told him) and another MW fan ran past us with a spear gun. We got out of there really quick. They made a real mess of the place. But it carried on as Millwall came down to Brighton a lot. Donna, Tracy, Kaz, and half my year, so many great memories. Mostly of sneaking out of the Boarding House toilet window to get there then up the pipe again to get back. When I left school I worked on the Palace Pier for three months before going to London to live, and that was the best summer extended I had ever had. I have to stop…. the “years” are gone and it won’t come back. Loved the place, the music, the life, the HY world. *Sigh’s*

    By Alec Ellis (30/07/2013)
  • Unbelievable, just looking at this page and listening to the radio and Reeling In The Years by Steely Dan came on, sent a shiver down my spine, so many happy memories of this place, and sadly missed.

    By Ian Saxby (12/10/2013)
  • I am amazed at all the people that remember the debacle with Millwall F.C. – bearing in mind that they obviously were not there at the time. The gunman threatening the bar staff is a figment of someones’s over fertile imagination. The speargun was fired through the door and did not appear inside the club. I can clearly picture who was there on the night in question, trying to hold the doors closed. One is sadly deceased, one lives on Crete and the other was me! The Cretan was taken to hospital with a head wound. My colleague was ‘ glassed ‘ in the neck but fortunately not deeply, and the two of us were forced to beat a hasty retreat, because of sheer numerical force. On one immortal occasion at the Mardis Gras club, I was forced to listen to a narration of the entire incident, in the first person, by some one who was not present at the event. Most annoying!

    By Peter Bryan (26/05/2014)
  • I was there in 1973/74. Today i play stratocasters and Fender/Marshall amps.

    By Jo (31/05/2014)
  • I remember parking my bike outside the years back in the early 80’s, meeting up with my mates, having a laugh. Good old days from long ago. Had long hair then and still have long now.Now live in the Highlands of Scotland, running my own successful business, hundreds of miles from Brighton.

    By Tom Didcott (21/06/2014)
  • Met my wife here – still together after all these years. Great memories from 1975-1980.

    By Alan Keir (14/08/2014)
  • I’m sorry, once Peppa took over the place rapidly went down hill due to Stuart ‘I’m so bored’ Shepherd playing the same records, in the same order every night. What an egotist him and LLoyd were. Before he took over as DJ the place was great. Saw Ange there! But after 1975 it fell apart. It became a poseurs paradise with crappy beer. A silly door policy and tough guy bouncers (who ran away when Millwall came in) I certainly don’t look at the place with rose coloured glasses. It was a dirty mess of a club and gave me an eternal loathing of ‘free bird’. Still that’s my opinion.

    By Chris (03/10/2014)
  • Great to see all the comments and many recognised names. As with everyone else I had great times at the Years. Shame about the negative view of Chris – just want to say I knew Stuart Shepherd quite well and it’s probably down to him (along with Pete Bryan) that the Hungry Years continued after Richard Holmes left in the days before John and Pepa arrived. Anyway, it did carry on for many successful years and brought great times for so many people. Keep the comments coming.

    By Mick (17/11/2014)
  • I would like to say that the comment left by Chris is incredibly unfair and uninformed. It was never our door policy to be ‘tough’ or aggressive as he implies. The door staff were almost all customers of the establishment and, as such, tended to have friends who were regulars upstairs. We attempted to be reasonable and friendly whilst endeavoring to maintain a safe and enjoyable environment for the clientele. I cannot remember a single example of bullying or over zealousness on the part of the door staff.
    As to the door staff ‘who ran away’ when Millwall came in, I would like to put Chris right on that point. Some of the supporters, and I use the word loosely, had been upstairs earlier in the evening. I had not been working there very long, and we did not operate a closed door policy at that time. One of these so-called football supporters glassed my friend in the neck, and only good luck saved him from serious injury. In the ensuing fracas, the aggressor came off much the worst, as my friend was an international athlete and very capable. Effectively, we threw out the hooligans, and thought no more of it. Unfortunately, they came back later in force, at least 20 of them, armed with stolen hammers and a hand axe. As there was only two of us and a Greek friend who tried to help, it simply was not possible to defend the situation in the normal way. The lights were turned off which, looking back, was probably a mistake. These events led the way for us to install proper doors to the upstairs, making it possible to be selective about who came in and thus pre-empting any further unfortunate events. I can assure Chris that no one ran away, and in fact I was interviewed by the police when they turned up because of an injury to a ‘supporter’. It would be much better for Chris to have a more positive view of life, and relate historical events with greater accuracy.
    Have a nice day Chris.

    By Peter Bryan (08/12/2014)
  • I practically lived at HYs in the mid 70s. I worked on the Palace Pier every weekend and all summer and we’d all hang out at HY after work. I recall the skinny dips in the summer of 76. Dave Hoad, Shaun Bingham, Alec Ellis, Martin Owens, Kev Stone and many other classmates from BHASVIC. I I took many lovely girls from EF/NIS/SIS foreign language schools there from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and Finland. I had a huge light fall on a girl from Helsinki and me one night when we were up to no good in some corner.  Such great tunes – no one so far has mentioned ‘The Rocker’ by Thin Lizzy or the closer of ‘Jig-a-Jig’ by East of Eden. Other bands were Free, Bad Company, Argent, Wishbone Ash, Floyd, Zeppeling, early Queen, Deep Purple, Doobies, Steely Dan, Allman Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd and so on. I feel inspired to do a HY playlist on Youtube. I left UK not long afterwards, but still visit every few years and smile when I drive past.

    By Bob Hayward (29/11/2015)
  • Can’t believe I didn’t know about this page until now! Everything people have written is so true. Spent so much time down there from ’77-’79 – it was like my second home! Continued going less frequently in the early ’80s. I went out with several of the bouncers – Mark Corcoran (still see him today!), Russell Hawkins and Adrian Ross remained a very dear friend of mine until he died. The Years really did become the soundtrack to my life – already said by someone but a great phrase! Ian Saxby – I remember you! Where are you now?! 

    By Jane Hodd (Heater) (28/02/2016)
  • Hello Bob Heywood, do you remember me from the pier working for Keith on the archery and the Ghost Train? What a great time the ’70s were at the Hungry Years and the music will last forever.

    By Dave Batchelor (22/03/2016)
  • I first went to the years in 1974 I was 16 but looked older. I was addicted to the music, and for next 20 years went at least twice a week if not more. I’m still going strong at 58 and still ride bikes. I’m a grandad now but still miss the place. I’m still friends with Big Pete who used to be the bouncer, he still rides bikes too. My fave track tor a dance was KASHMIR by Zeppelin. 

    By Jerry Zaft (02/04/2016)
  • The ’70s down the Years were very special. It was loud, sometimes a mess, full of drunk music freaks and, wonderful. First went in ’74 and last went on closing day 2010 (?). Loads of people I still remember, many still great friends. The above mentioned Kev Stone, Rob Hayward, Stuart, Lloyd and Paul Healey. Also Bob Piper, Pete Welsh, Keith Johns, Steve Lockwood, Brian & John Watson, Rob Gyl, Helen Lemm, Rick Holmes, Mike Weatherley (MP!), Kaz, Tracy, Ian Cuthbert (mad Scot from Edinburgh), Mental Mick, Jane Macdougall, Dave Finnis, Ian Elliot, Sally Mills, a plethora of Germans… (one who dragged me off to Munich in ’79), Animal, Andy Maidlow etc. etc…. oh, and I was there too!

    By Ian Mills (14/06/2016)
  • Hello, I’m a researcher from TV production company Twofour. We’re making a TV documentary on ……..

    Editor’s note:
    Sorry but we do not allow requests for information on third parties.

    By Beth Teverson (05/07/2016)
  • I remember first going to the Years as a 16 year old in 1976 and it really was the start of of my lifelong love of rock and motorbikes. That summer of 76, every weekend at the Years listening to great music like Lynyrd Skynyrd, Boston, Blue Oyster Cult, Montrose, Steely Dan, Led Zeppelin etc etc. Discovering (lots of) girls, the sheer excitement of being young. Everything people have said is true, the Years was a really important part of my life and the 70s was my favourite era. Went there until the early 80s and remember riding my various bikes there and somehow getting home the worse for wear. Or if I was banned or had broken limbs trying to get to the station and get the last train home!
    New Years Eve was great and I remember lots of faces but not so many names. Fran Doherty, Isobel Black a French girl called Beatrice, Suzy Taylor, Katrina Elliott, a guy who was a runner who was the spitting image of Bruce Springsteen! A few drinks in the Basketmakers first and then to the Years for a boozy sweaty night of air guitar! Great times and sadly missed.

    By Steve Cork (09/09/2016)
  • I just came across this page and went to the years in the 70s. I used to hang around with the bikers from the Clarence, Portslade. What a wicked time and all the memories are brilliant -  shame it shut down. I made loads of good friends and enjoyed the music and having fun,  shame we have to get older and more sensible.  Sarah, better known as Kitten.

    By Sarah (07/05/2017)
  • I’ve just found this page! I spent so much time at ” The Years” head banging and playing the air guitar from 77 onwards. Miss it even now when I come down to visit my friends! Nostalgia!

    By Bridget (29/10/2017)
  • I first went there in 83, It was great and also the first night out were I’ felt comfortable. I just couldnt get into the whole Coasters and Sherries  things etc. 

    When I first went upstairs and saw everyone playing their air guitars it blew me away. My kinda place I said to myself. I loved the music and the atmosphere.  I too became a regular every Wednesday and Saturday nights.

    I used to annoy the DJ by always asking for Queen songs. I guess I wasn’t a true heavy metal dude, but I still had good time and still love Queen.

    My friends were Phil Baker, Tim Miles, and Ian Batchelor (Brian May lookalike and mad Kiss fan), like Freddie sadly no longer with us.

    By Peter Benholm (05/11/2017)
  • Hungry Years facebbok group at:

    By Kevin Cooke (22/02/2018)
  • Great memories of Friday/Saturday nights there in the late seventies with school mates from Varndean Grammar/Sixth Form College. Few pints in the Golden Fleece (where I worked) or maybe King and Queen before a night of head banging at the Years. Even better memories of EF/SIS Scandinavian girls there! 

    By Jim Agar (26/02/2018)
  • I was a regular at the Years from 76 / 79 had so many great nights there, sadly lost touch with everyone when I left Brighton, did re- visit a few times late 80s but was a different crowd. John and pepa were legends. Thanks for all the happy memories.

    By Nick Flint (06/03/2021)
  • I met my wife to be on a night at the Hungry Years. We were gathering at a pub called Closeau’s in Tunbridge Wells before driving down to Brighton as we did more Saturdays than not. She tagged along as she was into rock and at the end of the night I got her phone number written on the back of a packet of Silk Cut. We went out for a while but drifted apart. I met her again in 2008 and fell in love all over again. Married for 11 years now. The years were there for us and how exciting it was to be young in the eighties…

    By Dave Brooks (10/11/2021)

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