Archive for Teddy Boys

Lee Samuels

Lee a Teddy Boy in 1976


“We were in gangs. Gang culture at the time was a rebirth of the Teddy Boys of the fifties and sixties…”

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“If you were part of a gang you had a tattoo. I was living right next door to a tattooist, so before I knew where I was every Saturday I was in the tattooist having a new tattoo.”


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Birnie Blunt

Birnie a Mod in the mid 1960s

“You may not think so… but you’re walking around in a uniform. You don’t know it, even your private clothes is a uniform”.

“The mods were gentlemen or thought they were… And you had the rockers who were ‘greasemonkies’… because they were all on motorbikes, and dirty and greasy and always taking their motorbikes apart. Whereas the mods had scooters.

  • They had two kinds of shoes, which were either what we call winkle pickers, which were very pointed, which you can still get nowadays, or ‘chisels’, which were pointed but chopped off.
  • And then clothes, the trousers would be very tight fitting, the jacket would be buttoned right up to here, about three or four buttons, all nice colours.
  • And the ones that normally rode the scooters, the Lambrettas, vespers, would have what they called a parka. It’s a coat and it has a hood. They were the original hoodie. They used to have fur round the edge.”

“It was an experience that was very good. Because I enjoyed that time. But yo
u were able to learn from it… you learn from these things and you’re able to move on, and that’s why at the age of twenty I was able to turn my back on it and walk away… I went into the Youth Service. I found that working with them was a lot better than working against them”.

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