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My Story Memory: Vince Hockey remembers seeing Lonnie Donegan for the first of several times




We used to put our autograph books in at the stage door. We went to collect them when my hero, Lonnie Donegan, was doing a week long stint. One of the comedians asked us if we had met Lonnie, we said no and he went to find out if he was available; he was, so we went to meet him. As you can imagine we were a bit tongue-tied but Lonnie was very gracious. We left elated and went to a pub down the road where a gentleman asked us if we knew Lonnie was on up the road and offered us two tickets, for free, for that nights show. We thanked him and went off to see the show. Lonnie played a Martin guitar and in 1986 I was appointed warranty repairer for Martin Guitars and a few years later was asked to go to Lonnie's house as his Martin guitar had been damaged. I spent an hour or so with him but I wasn't as tongue tied as in our first meeting. The comedian was Don Smoothy of Smoothy and Layton and I can't find mention of them at all. There's more if [you] need it. I saw Buddy Holly, Bill Haley, Lonnie Donegan and many great acts, musicals and opera. I now live quite close so it's easy to get to. We've eaten at the restaurant as well.
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