The Faces

lespearce1Les Pearce

Les Pearce arrived at the club in the mid-Seventies, employed by Tony Bullimore to act as doorman and club security. As such he was the first person you met on entering and most members remember Les for the cheery and, sometimes, ribald banter that ensued whilst paying up your entrance fee. He was also quick to wade in if any trouble was brewing and had several wily techniques of dividing opposing factions. These usually employed buying them a drink to allow time for them to cool down. Though I did see him on several occasions persuade trouble makers to join him downstairs for a chat where it was quieter only to swiftly eject them when they got near the door.

Over the next few years Les became interested in the music side of the club, chatting with the bands and often arranging re-bookings and negotiating fees. Les also took to booking in private parties and running several nights himself so when Harry Williams, the club’s bars manager left in the late Seventies, Tony Bullimore gave Les the job of the overall running of the venue.

Les thoroughly enjoyed his time as manager and one had the feeling that, in time, he would be in sole charge. With his son as a partner, in the latter years of the Granary Les was able to say that he owned the Granary. The photograph of Les on the roof came about when he was awarded a certificate of merit by the RSPCA for recovering a stranded duck. The rumours that he ate it afterwards are totally untrue.

Les died from cancer in 2003 and the articles in the local press reflected on how Les had made his mark on the city’s entertainment scene over the years. Tony Bullimore made a fine speech at the funeral and a gathering was held afterwards at the Gloucestershire County Cricket Ground which was packed with those who knew Les.

Tony Bullimore

Tony was a director of the Granary from the early Seventies through to the middle of the Eighties. Previously he had owned the Bamboo Club which was Bristol’s club for the Jamaican cummunity. Many world class soul and reggae acts appeared there and the club was greatly missed when it burned down. When Tony wrote his biography “Saved” in 2002, he didn’t mention his involvement with the Granary Club. The book was written to tell the tale of how his yacht, the Exide Challenger, capsized in the Southern Ocean whilst he was competing in the Vendee Globe single-handed non-stop around the world race and how he survived in the upturned craft. With just enough air to last for six days, his sheer determination plus a combination of a survival suit to protect against the extreme cold and chocolate to avoid starvation, kept him alive.

He said his first reaction to hearing his rescuers outside his boat was, “absolutely ecstatic, I thought it would never happen.” Arriving on board the naval rescue ship, HMAS Adelaide, he was said to be “babbling with excitement”. He also asked for a cup of tea. On his return to Britain, he was invited to an audience with the Queen. Tony Bullimore’s ordeal did not put him off sailing. He filmed a TV programme with comedian Lenny Henry in which they sailed from Kent to the Caribbean.



Ed Newsom

Affectionately known to all a ‘Super Ed’ he was a founder member of the Plastic Dog team and was the first in a long line of Granary rock DJs. He was in charge of the ‘Plastic Revolver Machine’ and had the most eclectic record collection. It was at Ed’s flat in Royal York Crescent that the infamous Mothers of Invention party took place. Ed also served his time as a musician being a bass player with the King Bees and as a roadie with East of Eden.



Al Read

A founder member of the Plastic Dog team Al took over the turntables when Ed left to move to London. Al was the club’s rock DJ until the early Eighties. He also worked for the BBC which gave the club the added bonus of local radio publicity as well as a steady influx of the latest rock singles and albums. After the demise of jazz at the Granary, Al started the Friday night rock discos, previously the disco had only been used to fill in between live bands or as the entertainment on private fubction nights. The Friday rock disco became a Granary institution and the records played as the finale were a headbangers delight. However after years of it Al never wants to hear ‘Bat Out of Hell’, ‘Stairway to Heaven’ or ‘Free Bird” again!



Glenn Daniel

Glenn first came to the Granary to see ‘The Runaways’ in 1976. He became Al’s partner in running the Friday discos and after Al left in 1982 Glenn took his place as the club’s rock DJ. The picture is of Glenn’s attempt to impersonate one of his rock heroes in ‘a miming to records’ act one disco night. Glenn left to roadie for No Quarter and Lionheart in 1986. Glenn died from a heart attack in 2007 at his home in South Wales. 



John Mason

Following the precedent set by the previous DJs, John spent some time acting as Glenn’s partner, covering when Glenn went off to be a rock roadie then taking over as the club’s permanent DJ when Glenn left.



Adrian Coleman

Adrian worked with both Glenn and John before taking over the role of permanent DJ. After the temporary closure of the club for refurbishment, Adrian took the club through to its final night in 1988. During those final years, the number of live bands diminished until virtually every night bar private promotions was a rock disco night so Adrian was probably the hardest working of all the Granary rock DJs.



Andy Fox 

Andy never held a permanent position as a Granary DJ but did play a big role in Bristol’s rock scene. At the Granary he stood in for Al on several occasions and ran a series of Mondaynight rock discos but it was as the rock DJ at Tiffany’s that  Andy was best known. He easily made the transition into radio and worked on several of the local commercial stations. His late night rock show on Star was a firm favourite with Bristol rock fans.



Ade The First

Adrian Copley was the club’s cellar man and barman in the late Seventies and early Eighties and as such was always on hand to act as DJ when needs arose. The fact that he knew his stuff as a rock DJ was a real bonus.