Thursday, 1 September 2011

Take It To The Limit

Have spent the last few days reading Neil Anderson's book "Take It To The Limit" a history of the Sheffield club; The Limit. After reading Tony Beesley's "Out Of Control", a book about two clubs in South Yorkshire - Doncaster Rotters and Rotherham Windmill it seemed to make sense getting this book.
I never went to either of the aforementioned clubs. I did spend a small portion of 1985 living in Sheffield in an area called Meersbrook but The Leadmill was the venue of choice and the watering holes of London Road (Red Lion)? Still, after collecting live tapes in the late 1970's/early 1980's I know that The Limit was a club of some renown and a history of the club would make interesting reading, and in parts I wasn't wrong.

The Limit was created by two entrepreneurs in 1978 - a Rock DJ and an ex-copper. They wanted to create a club with no dress code and therefore be an ideal place for the students and "outsiders" of Sheffield.
The book seems to present the club as some sort of oasis, but in the area there was Retford Porterhouse and Nottingham's Ad Lib Club (later The Garage) and preceding this... The Outlook in Doncaster and The Windmill in Rotherham and most importantly to me: AJ's in Lincoln - the Limit may have been unique to Sheffield but not necessarily to the area. Still, the story of how The Limit was built from The Buccaneer through to The Wapentake Bar and the characters involved is interesting. The book has great pictures from the club, some I haven't seen before - Punishment Of Luxury, Vice Versa, and a strange one of Clock DVA (!), and lists of bands that played...The Human League for 20p!! Good stuff. It quotes NMX too,I used to think it was a bloody miserable fanzine at the time and nothing printed here changes my mind.I much preferred the Leicester based "Y" at the time.
There is an interesting side story too, of the owners buying The Lyceum building, sinking their profits in to the venture and end up losing their "millions". Again, Sheffield Lyceum another venue I have never been to.

The book is a quick read but a worthy one and to all those who went to punk clubs in the late 1970's it will bring back memories.
I do find it interesting how Sheffield is now selling itself as a trail-blazing (musical) city in the late 1970's with videos, books and dedicated the time the city was no different (to me) from Lincoln or Nottingham. Great local bands with great venues to see them at.

Buy the book, £12.95 from or Sheffield Vision, it'll keep you entertained for a few days.  

1: Early Clock DVA promotional shot.
2: Book Cover.

1 comment:

  1. You commented on the Clockdva was from 1978 or 1979. Line up from left to right;
    Dave Hammond (guitar), Jud (bass), Simon Elliott-Kemp (synthesizer), Adi Newton (vocal).