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The Sombrero coffee bar

West Street in the early 1960s
Reproduced with the kind permission of the Regency Society

Does anyone remember a coffee bar at the top of West Street called the Sombrero? I used to go with my friends on Saturday afternoons, not being allowed out at night in the early 60s as naive early teenagers. We preferred it to the Montpelier Rooms where the patrons were older and quite a lot of drug use happening.

My first marriage proposal

The Sombrero had a day club in the basement and to all intents and purposes, you wouldn’t know it was daytime. Lots of disco lights, smoky atmosphere, great music, no alchol but hordes of international exchange students to dance and flirt with!! I turned down my first marriage proposal at the age of 14, a lovely Spanish boy called Felipe who wanted to whisk me off to his father’s horse stud in Andalusia!! OK, I know it was a wind-up, but I fell for it at the time! It’s a shame there are none of those places for the kids to go these days.

Comments about this page

  • Never went into The Sombrero but the photo does show HORNE’S shop on the corner of West Street and North Street where we used to buy all our uniforms and school ties etc in the fifties.

    By Tim Sargeant (04/07/2019)

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