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Created July 2010

Saturday 13 July 1974
Hatfield And The North
with Byzantium, Isotope, and Keith Christmas
Eastcourt Meadows
Gillingham, UK

The Move, Fleetwood Mac, Duster Bennett, the Freddie Mac Show, Chris Farlowe and the Thunderbirds, Wynder K Frog, Geno Washington and the Ram Jam Band, Family, Cliff Bennett, John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Joe Cocker and the Grease Band, Jasper Stubbs, The Passion Forest, The Breakthrough, Skip Bifferty.

DJ John Peel

    One that the weather gods did NOT smile upon, it rained heavily for much of the weekend and the exercise was not repeated. A pity as the Chateau looks impressive and its pretty country around that area.

Hi there.... I was there!!!, a 22 year old, right at the front, and soaking wet....
My memories.....
I can remember ending up on the stage that was a mud bank, standing behind John Mayall as he played piano, when it was pouring with rain...
Being well impressed with Duster Bennett
and being right below Chris Farlowe, virtually at his feet being sprayed with his spit....
and almost being hit by Roger Chapman's mic' stand, during Family's stunning set, when it crashed off the stage....
Wasn't Joe Cocker there??? I seem to remember him...
I will have to start trying to get my poor old addled brain working on more memories...
but I used to go to many festivals and gigs in those days...

Dave Balcombe

As a local guy living in Redditch about 8 miles from the Château Impney I used to go with a bunch of workmates on Friday nights to the all-nighters which looking back was a bit weird because we were into Rock,Psychedelic and Blues music but to meet the girls we had to go to the soul and dance music nights,we stood no chance really, hair too long and the wrong clothes- we wore jeans not smart trousers.As apprentices at the time aged 18yrs we had to work Saturday overtime so that meant going to work straight after a night at the Château (how did we do it).

I can remember one Friday/Saturday morning as we were leaving the Châteaux I saw a poster in the entrance as we left advertising the Bluesology Festival on the wall (just remembered that the all-nighters were in the basement,great place) and if my memory is correct it was for that same weekend that meant we could not go on the Saturday (straight to work at 8.30am to 12.30pm) but ok for Sunday.

Now the memory gets a little faded but a seem to remember arriving and it was raining and walking thro loads of sheep s**t, the stage was in two sections the main to the left and a little one to the right but may be wrong,the band that was on at the time was Geno Washington and his Ram Jam Band playing soul and dance music(strange to have that mix of bands, rock and soul music.....hey that's a track by Country Joe and the Fish.

The Move played but cannot remember what but can remember that they had some old TV sets on the small stage to the right that they later smashed up.

Next the Band that totally blew me away came on Family from the start they were awesome (it was the first time we had seen them live) I remember Roger Chapman swinging the mike stand around and also swirling round his head the microphone and he let out the lead till it was touching the sides of the tent,he would also throw it out into the crowd and pull it back at the last moment before it hit someone.I think also he hit one of the overhead lights with the mike stand and it came down.The most vivid recollection I have of the whole event was when Charlie Whitney started See Through Windows I remember he went to the back of the stage in front of his speaker and got his guitar to feedback he then walked about the stage in a circle changing the pitch as he moved, at the time never seen anything like it,been a big fan ever since and still go to see him today what a voice.Well that's my memory of the event but if I get the wife to hit me on the head with a plank I might remember more (or less) !.

PS Just heard that the Châteaux is up for sale for £17.5 million, where is my wallet !!

Ian Hill (Redditch)

Gosh I remember that one - first festival I ever went to!
A friend and I went on the second day, it took us quite a while to get there on the Midland Red bus from Birmingham and it was a bit of a walk from the main road to the festival site which was in front of the Chateau. It was even worse walking back when we left as it was pouring with rain by then (typical British Bank holiday?!).

Fleetwood Mac were the headline band that day – the originals with Peter Green etc. when they used to play all that 12 bar blues stuff. Danny Kirwan had just joined as an extra guitarist, I think it was his first gig with them. I remember thinking how young he looked (and I was only a teenager myself then). They were brilliant and went down a storm despite everyone having to stand in the rain – we were soaked – worth it though.

Breakthru’ (the proper spelling of their name) were on as well and always put on a good show. We knew them a bit so were probably biased ;-D

The Move were on in the afternoon, they played well but were not so popular with the crowd as they were considered more of a pop band.

I saw all the bands featured ‘back in the day’ at various venues in Birmingham so it’s not too easy to remember now if it was at that festival or not.

Really enjoyed the day though – I think I still have the flyer for it back at my parents house – just trying to remember how much it cost for the ticket to get in - probably less that 20/- in old money (£1)


I went to this with a band called Rebellion who played late on the first night. They had a great guitarist from Worcester named Phil Goddard. Also there was a Karate demonstration which was quite weird. Danny Kirwin of Fleetwood Mc played as one of his very early gigs with a very short hair cut and also a Watkins guitar and Vox amp. Family were outstanding and so was Mick Taylor with John Mayall. On the first night a lot of people went to the Wharf Hotel nearby to listen an unknown band call Jethro Tull. The Move refused to play because the stage was wet and therefore may have been dangerous, but went on eventually. The Chateau was not only a beautiful place but musically it was a major event for soul nights and Sunday afternoons for most mods. As was Frank Freemans in Droitwich.

Keep the faith,


Hi....they say about my generation that “ if you were there you can’t remember it”.........well , maybe. Here’s a thing though....on your website there is no mention of Joe Cocker and the Grease Band.....I swear I saw them at the festival.......and I am certain I was there!!!


( we've now added Cocker to the bill:Ed )

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