Medway scene

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Medway scene is a term denoting bands and related cultural activities in the Medway Towns, north Kent, England. Main towns involved (from West to East) are Strood, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, and Rainham.


Of Medway musicians, the best known is Billy Childish[1] (from Chatham) who formed punk band The Pop Rivets in the late 1970s, and later formed Thee Milkshakes, Thee Mighty Caesars, Thee Headcoats, The Buff Medways, The Musicians of the British Empire and The Chatham Singers, among others. His inspiration has led to many other bands forming who now have a worldwide cult following.[2] Other acclaimed bands have included The Prisoners, The Dentists, The Claim and Thee Headcoatees. The music often draws heavily on the tradition of garage/punk/rock'n roll/raw-blues-music from the 1950s and 1960s, hence references to the "Medway Delta".[3] Records have been released on Big Beat, Media Burn and other small indie labels, as well as Childish's own Hangman Records and Hangman's Daughter, and latterly Damaged Goods Records.[4]

In July 2014, there was an incident when Neil Young's show at the Rochester Castle Gardens was invaded by the Teletubbies and Young was forced to sing a duet on Heart Of Gold with Tinkie Winkie.

There has also been an accompanying, though not so well known, poetry scene, started by The Medway Poets in the late 1970s; Childish was a member of this group. There is also a crossover into art with the Stuckists art group.


This list is incomplete


  • Antmonkey
  • Allfather
  • All Flags Burn
  • All the Flesh
  • Alvin Purple
  • The Ambience
  • Andy Pandys
  • Archie Wah Wahs
  • Armitage Shanks[5]
  • The Accursed[6]
  • Audrey, Start The Revolution
  • Auntie Vegetable[7]


  • Bad Taxidermy
  • Balance Lost
  • The Baron Von Marlon
  • Bear vs Manero
  • Bela Lugosi Blues
  • Between the Eyes
  • Black Light Brigade[8]
  • Black Lion Courtiers
  • Blind Lemon Pie
  • Bluevoid
  • Bonsai Reservoir
  • Brahma Bums
  • The Bresslaws[9]
  • Brigadier Ambrose
  • The Bristols[10]
  • Broken Banjo
  • The Buff Medways




  • The Earls of Suave
  • The Effectives
  • Envy


  • Feed the Rhino
  • Five Days Time
  • Floreat
  • The Flowing
  • The Flying Isaacs
  • Fortune West
  • Frau Pouch
  • From Fags To Niggers


  • Galileo 7[17]
  • The Germans
  • Gin
  • G-Pid
  • Groovy Uncle
  • The Godless Reds





  • Len Bright Combo
  • The Len Price 3[19]
  • Let Our Enemies Beware
  • The Long Weekend
  • The Lovedays
  • The Love Family



  • Naked
  • Near Ruin
  • Needs Must
  • The New
  • Niltones
  • Nine Days to No One
  • Nutty Gig


  • The Offbeats
  • One Day Elliot
  • The Only Sun
  • On Margate Sands
  • The Objectors


  • Petburger
  • Petts
  • Phineas Fogg
  • Pity Party
  • Planet Mushroom
  • The Pop Rivets
  • Power in Motion
  • The Pressure
  • The Prime Movers
  • The Prisoners
  • The Product
  • Punching Swans
  • Pure Joy
  • Punyfish
  • Professional Biscuit Thief


  • Quad Riot


  • The Reg Varney Trio
  • Robert Underwater
  • Rocking Richard and Whistling Vic Templar[21]
  • The Round


  • Saracen
  • Saturday Sunset
  • Science Noodles
  • Second Sun
  • Sergeants' Mess
  • The Shagmonroes
  • The Singing Loins[22]
  • The Solarflares[23]
  • The Spangalitos
  • Sparrows
  • Thee Spartan Dreggs
  • Spyder Byte
  • Stabilisers
  • Stringer
  • The Stormkings
  • Story Books
  • The Strookas
  • Swinging Time
  • Sworn to Secrecy
  • The Syndromes


  • Tape Error
  • That Massive Bereavement
  • The Bluesmothers with Seven String Les
  • Theatre Royal
  • These Guilty Men
  • Timmy Tremolo & The Tremolons
  • Things That Blink
  • The Men With The Golden Gonads
  • Together, We Fight
  • Tollervey and the Terminators
  • The Tour
  • The Trainset
  • Take A Stand


  • Underground Heroes
  • Univited Guests
  • Unknown Impulse
  • UpCDownCLeftCRightCABC+Start



  • WhiteDevilWhiteDevil
  • The Wild
  • Wipeout


  • Ye Ascoynes D'Ascoynes


This list is incomplete'

See also[edit]

Selected discography[edit]

  • V/A - Medway Powerhouse, Vol One (LP) Hangman, 1987[24]
  • V/A - Medway Powerhouse, Vol Two (LP) Hangman, 1987
  • V/A - Medway Powerhouse, Vol Three (LP) Hangman, 1988
  • V/A - Medway Powerhouse, Vol Four (LP) Hangman, 1989[25]