Ultravox second UK Tour
16 June -14 July 1977
On 18 June 1977, an article in Sounds announced a series of ‘club’ dates as follows, as a prelude to a full British tour in the autumn:
June 16: Marquee, London
June 17: Civic Hall, St Albans
June 18: Tiffany’s, Newcastle-under-Lyme
June 24: Penthouse, Scarborough
June 28: Tiffany’s, Shrewsbury
June 30: Marquee, London
July 01: Leeds Polytechnic
July 02: Civic Hall, Wolverhampton
July 03: Castaways, Plymouth
July 04: Top Of The World, Stafford
July 14: London Marquee
A week later on 25 June 1977, the same dates appeared in NME with two amendments. The first two dates are missing, and the show at Tiffany’s in Newcastle-under-Lyme was “Tonight, Thursday” instead of 18 June, which was the previous Saturday.
There are separate adverts in both papers for the shows at the Marquee on 16 June (the venue’s archive confirms this) and at St Albans City Hall (not Civic Hall) on 17 June. Support band Clemen Pull could not remember the date, but confirmed they did support Ultravox! at City Hall around this time.
Thus the archive has been amended to show a gig at Tiffany’s in Newcastle-under-Lyme on Thursday 23 June, 1977. While the itinerary and geography might not prove anything one way or the other, it does seem more logical to go with the latter of these two dates.
The show in Plymouth on 3rd July confounds the logic: Wolverhampton (July 2) and Stafford (July 4) are only 25 miles apart, yet Ultravox! travelled a 450-mile round trip to Plymouth in between
There are two other dates on this map that have been added to the archive as ‘confirmed’ gigs thanks to articles in local and national papers, music archivists and another venue memoir. Tony Beesley’s book “Out Of Control” tells the story of the punk scene at two of Yorkshire’s most famous period venues, The Outlook in Doncaster and The Windmill in nearby Rotherham. Follow-up correspondence with him has confirmed the various dates Ultravox! played at those venues, including one supported by Bethnal on 19 May 1977. This doesn’t fit in with any listed or advertised ‘tour’ and may seem anomalous, until you consider that Ultravox! also played at Rebecca’s in Birmingham three days later, confirmed by the guys at the Birmingham Music Archive. The Outlook gig was also reviewed in Sounds on 4 June 1977, so that further confirms it was not part of this club date tour…
Minding The Gaps
So what of the three days between 24 and 28 June in Scarborough and Shrewsbury?
With nothing booked or listed, maybe it is simply that nothing happened. But one could speculate that the ‘unknown’ gigs at in Goole and Ashby-de-la-Zouch fit nicely…?
What is more likely though is that the booking at Tiffany’s in Shrewsbury confirms that the band did not play the ‘unknown’ rugby club date on this mini-tour which further points to it being on the earlier round in April.
I have also been following up correspondence with two sources that either saw or supported Ultravox! around this time at unlisted venues, but are we unable to confirm dates. Both Langley College, Reading and Hitchin College could fit with this second round of gigs, given that Ultravox! played at least another two (above) that are not listed in adverts, but neither can be specifically accounted for at the moment.
Perhaps you can help?
Ticket stubs, diaries, personal anecdotes etc are very welcome and everything will be acknowledged and followed up.
Thanks for reading