Back To The 80s Concert

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Before my two and a half week holiday in August, I noticed a flyer for a local concert, which was pinned onto the notice board in the staff canteen.

The concert was called ‘Back to the 80s’.

Back To The 80s

The event was being held in the grounds of a posh private school in Godalming called Charterhouse on Saturday 15th August. It was an outdoor concert, and you could bring a picnic. The logo on the poster looked like the one used on the Back to the Future movies. There were five classic artists from the 80’s that were playing at the concert, they were The Human League, ABC, Go West, Nick Heyward, and T’Pau. It was going to be finished off by a big firework display.

The flyer for the concert

I knew of The Human League from the 80’s really well, as their old songs are often being played on the radio. The other performers I didn’t remember or know of so well.

I was a child of the 80’s, so I thought it would be fun to go to the concert for nostalgic reasons, and for the first fun event for the start of my holiday.

My friend Ian who was over here from the States was interested in going after I told him about it too. Ian remembered all the old bands very well, as he is a little older than I am. Ian ordered some tickets for the both of us.

On the Saturday, I bought some beer, sandwiches and some sweets to take along for our picnic at the event.

I drove to Guildford to pick Ian up, and then I drove us to Godalming, to park in the grounds of the Charterhouse School.

It was a very nice, warm, and sunny day, we were very lucky with the weather that day.

Blue sky

We got there early at around 5.30pm, so we could find a good spot to sit near the stage.

I parked in the grounds, and then we walked towards the Charterhouse school.

We took along our food, drinks, and a blanket to sit on.

The school looked like Hogwarts out of the Harry Potter movies, it was big and gothic looking. I had my camera with me and took some pictures of the Charterhouse School buildings and grounds.

Charterhouse, or is it Hogwarts?

An old looking statue infront of the school

We collected our tickets from a couple of event staff who were sat at a desk near the entrance of the site for the concert.

As we walked behind the school we saw the stage and a number of people sat on the grass. All of them looked very civilised. Many of the crowd had brought along tables and chairs with them, together with lots of bottles of wine, champagne, and hampers of food. They were all dressed smartly. It was a different class of people from the last big outdoor music concert I had been to, which was Guilfest in 2007, you can read about it on my blog here.

Lots of people

The stage

Posh picnics

We found a good spot, and I laid the blanket out on to the ground for us to sit on. We cracked open some beers and started on the food, enjoying the sun whilst waiting for the concert to begin.

Me and Ian waiting for the event to start

The view of the stage from where we sat

We took some pictures, then Ian went off for a wander and he took my camera and his along with him.

Ian near the stage

Ian going for a wander

Ian found some stalls selling champagne, wine, and food.

Some of the many stalls

Plenty of alcohol on sale

Veuve Clicquot Champagne on sale

Some of the crowd were wearing 1980’s styled wigs, which looked funny.

80's Rock styled hair

Disco wigs

The sun was starting to set.

The sun going down

A couple of hours later the concert host went on stage to speak on the mic to the crowd, and he sounded very posh. Then a local radio DJ went up on stage to talk after him.

Not long after the first band went on stage, which was T’Pau led by female singer Carol Decker. T'Pau had hits in the 80's with songs like 'China In Your Hand'

T'Pau - China In Your Hand

T'Pau on stage

I started to take some more pictures, they came out really well. I also took some videos, which also came out well.

I started to film T'Pau, but a guy was standing in the way. My other videos of the concert are much better

Me taking some pictures

The band took their name from a Star Trek character called T’Pau who was a female Vulcan Priestess.

Carol Decker the band's lead singer

Carol Decker looked good for her age, she was dressed in black skintight leather trousers.

Whilst she was singing, more people arrived, some of the people who were previously sat down then stood up. A crowd was forming and moving towards the front of the stage.

We could no longer see anything whilst we were sat down on the ground. Ian suggested we pack up our picnic food and drinks into my bag and move towards the front of the crowd, so we could see the stage.

The crowd at the front of the stage

We quickly packed our things and moved towards the stage area.

There was quite a big crowd forming, so we were lucky to get near the front when we did.

Ian and myself amongst the crowd

I had a great position to take photographs and videos from where I was stood. I got some great shots of T’Pau and all the other bands that night.

T'Pau on stage behind us

T’Pau were a good band, I enjoyed seeing them.

The next performer was Nick Heyward, who used to be in a band called Haircut 100. He had hits in the 80s with songs like 'Love Plus One'.

Haircut 100 - Love Plus One

Nick Heyward sang and played his guitar really well. He had quite a few fans in the audience singing along with him.

Nick Heyward in action

Nick Heyward on stage

The band that played after Nick Heyward was called Go West. I didn’t recognise the band name, but I had heard some of their songs before. They had hits in the 80s like 'We Close Our Eyes'. The lead singer was Peter Cox. They were very good on stage too.

Go West - We Close Our Eyes

A classic Go West song

Another classic Go West song

Peter Cox

Go West

ABC were then on afterwards. Martin Fry the singer was dressed in a white suit. I enjoyed their music, and the girl playing bongo drums was fun to watch. They were my second favourite band of the night. One of their hits I remember from the 80s is 'The Look Of Love.'

ABC - The Look Of Love

ABC live on stage

Martin Fry in his white suit


A saxophone player from the band

The lady playing bongo drums

They saved the best band for last, which was The Human League. The stage was re-arranged for them, and a big white sheet was put up, which was back-lit. The technical people had problems setting up the speakers and sound system, so there was a delay before the band came on stage. When the music started playing and they did finally come on stage, a large cheer came from the crowd. It was a great atmosphere and amazing music. Philip Oakley the lead singer had a brilliant stage presence and voice, he walked up and down the stage a lot. The two female singers of the band Susan Ann Sulley and Joanne Catherall were good singers and dancers, they still looked hot for their age. They changed outfits a few times too. All of their songs were classics, which I remembered and knew some of the words. They played classic 80s hits like 'Dont You Want Me.'

Human League - Don't You Want Me

The Human League make a big enterance with my favourite song of theirs

Another big hit

The Human League comes on stage

Philip Oakley

Great music

After The Human League finished, the fireworks were let off. It was a great display with many fireworks.  There was a lot of smoke, it looked like a war was going off.

All the smoke after the fireworks had ended

When the fireworks had finished we walked back to the car.

It was very dark and there were hundreds of cars parked in the school grounds. Luckily, Ian remembered where I was parked, and I had a torch on me, which helped.

There was a great long queue of traffic of cars leaving Charterhouse. Some of the people waiting in their vehicles got impatient, and there was lots of hooting of horns going on. It took us about twenty minutes to get out of there.

It was a fantastic evening, I’d like to see more outdoor concerts at Charterhouse and other places. I ended up ordering both a DVD and CD collection of The Human League's music online. I've been playing their music a lot in my car whilst driving to work lately.

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