‘Miss Winter Wonderland’ 1980s…

But first…
Dulltown, UK: Today’s instruction is to place a colourful tea cosy on your head, wear the heaviest boots that you have, draw on a black moustache using burnt cork, and stamp up and down the escalators of your nearest shopping centre singing Rule Britannia! as loudly as you can.

EPSON scanner imageYes, back in the 1980s here in Dulltown there used to be a place called The Silhouette Club. It was a nightclub. It was on two floors; the upper one having: a bar with a very good jukebox; a hatch in the wall where you could buy after-midnight snacks, mainly trays of chips with tomato ketchup as I recall; a room with heavily patterned flock wallpaper, a sticky worn carpet, low tables, comfortable chairs, and a very large television which was always set with the colour control full on and the volume at maximum; there was also a smaller back room with just enough space for a medium-sized pool table.
Down in the basement there was the low-ceilinged dark thudding sweaty disco room, a small bar, the toilets, and a murky room where unusual and interesting people would go sit in the dark and smoke a lot of cigarettes.
The ‘Sil’ was a great place – it attracted Dulltown’s ‘alternative’ folk of all ages and classes: the LGBT community well before they embraced that acronym, painters, sculptors, actors and theatre people, goths, ne’er-do-wells, punks, ‘new romantics’, bikers, under-age drinkers, leather enthusiasts, hippies, and even blokes in smart suits, and women in bright dresses, who desperately needed somewhere to go for a spot of exciting late night drinking.
The club was tatty, loud, cheap, and always interesting; the music was very good, the air was filled with the smell of hairspray, aftershave, alcohol, and smoke, and the clientele were generally bright-eyed, jolly, and friendly and they all seemed to mix well – this was a home for Dulltown’s outcasts.
Every six months or so they would do a special Saturday night with a themed drag contest featuring spectacularly dressed participants ‘on stage’ miming to a suitable backing track and then being subjected to interview by the outrageously naughty MC – the photograph above was taken at such an event, I think this was the Miss Winter Wonderland contestI recall that the previous one in the summer was called the Miss Beach Bag contest.
I remember saying to someone back then, ‘This is the golden age of the Silhouette – we’ll really miss this when it’s gone…’
Of course, they told me I was talking nonsense…

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
This entry was posted in archeology, cool, Dulltown, existentialism, fashion, history, Hull.UK., humour, information, instruction, people, photography, smiling, style, surrealism and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to ‘Miss Winter Wonderland’ 1980s…

  1. Dana Doran says:

    Maybe we all have our Golden Age? The early 70’s I think! On drinking late into the night, after closing up the fern bar on Polk Street in San Francisco at 2 am, we would wander to China Town for a bite, where for a small fee the liquor laws were ignored and Scotch was served in tea pots!

  2. All the best places go away, don’t they? Its so sad.

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