It was a very hot and sultry afternoon when more than 100 Friends gathered in the restaurant at the Langham Hotel in Royal Parade.  Originally, this was to have been an afternoon of reminiscences from Paul Davis and his wife Jacquie of their life together in show business but after Paul tragically lost his battle with cancer last month Edward – wearing his latest hat as Secretary of the British Music Hall Society – stepped up to the plate with his insight into the world of the Music Hall and Variety.

Edward Thomas

Edward’s confident style and encyclopaedic knowledge of the theatre, soon had his audience tapping and laughing away as he guided them through the music from Charles Jolly’s Laughing Policeman to the transition to ‘variety’ – with particular emphasis on the 1957 Royal Variety Performance and the late Eastbourne resident Malcolm Vaughan whose widow, Gaye, is still a ‘Friend’.

A captivated audience

Edward’s many fascinating anecdotal stories, accompanied by musical interludes, kept his audience totally engaged until it was time for tea.

What's for teaHere, the hotel again excelled itself with an offering of several varieties of sandwich and delicious cake – all washed down with a plentiful supply of tea and coffee.

A most enjoyable afternoon was had by all.  The raffle held raised £148 for the Friends’ coffers.