Here’s one of the deleted scenes from the A Curious Life DVD https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9gv00MlsIF8
You can now stream or download A Curious Life here from our distrify site if you’re not an iTunes user.
10 things I learnt touring with the Levellers
1] Men smell
The stench of feet, fart and other funk is really rather overpowering when you’re living on a bus together for two weeks. The cacophony is pretty horrendous too; a symphony of snoring, wailing walruses throughout the night doesn’t make for the best night’s sleep ever. And you might think touring is glamorous but I can assure you that getting out of bed and off the bus at 7 in the morning in the freezing cold to look for a toilet is not a glamorous experience at all.
2] The unconditional love of Levellers fans is a truly touching thing.
They are a loyal bunch those fans and they certainly know what they like. Every night I would mind the stall for Stephen Boakes whilst he played didgeridoo on stage and every night fans would whizz by on the way to the toilet or the bar but they would always stop for a brief chat and always as if they had known you for a lifetime. It really did make you feel a part of something bigger than the normal band/fan relationship. And they are such a friendly bunch [the notable exception being the woman who came up to me at Leeds whilst I was minding the stall for Stephen who juggled her not inconsiderable breasts in my face then stopped and announced “Oh you won’t be interested in these at all will you?” then flounced off, visibly aggrieved.]
3] The internet gives me a headache.
Having been kicked out of the venue [because understandably everyone wants to go home] and standing outside the beautiful Buxton Opera House at 1 in the morning in the freezing cold with my laptop balanced on my arm staring at a blue line on the screen that has been creeping ever so slowly towards “your upload is done” for what seems like forever is excruciating and frustrating and maddening. Especially as everyone else is in the pub over the road having a grand old time. Fuck you, internets.
4] Stephen Boakes should have his own film.
Okay, he does have a lengthy extra scene on the DVD but Stephen is an absolute pleasure to be on tour with and, don’t tell him this but he undoubtedly IS as eccentric as Jeremy. Those two together are a joy to behold. He does really deserve his own film. Stephen had brought this book on tour with him that he had rescued from a house clearance somewhere which was a guide to various battles around the country [a subject I admittedly have little, if no interest in whatsoever] and every day he would diligently and determinedly search for the nearest conflict to where we were in the country despite my discouraging noises and complete lack of enthusiasm. File under “Complete character”.
5] We have been to some wonderful venues
Buxton Opera House, London Union Chapel, Liverpool Philharmonic, Bexhill De La Warr Pavilion, Leeds Town Hall and Bath Forum were amongst some of the most beautiful venues I have ever been in. I was blown away night after night by some of the amazing architecture throughout this tour; what a wonderful antidote it was to that slog around those soulless branded mid-sized venues that seem to be omnipresent nowadays. Even if the gig was crap [which it never was as it happens!] the venue was usually a pleasure to behold. Special mention for Liverpool Anglican Cathedral as well when I sneaked off one night to watch the wonderful Tune-Yards!
6] Costa is shit
Their coffee is weak, flavourless shit, their service is shit, their croissants are shit and their internet is shit. Safe to say I have blown that endorsement deal with Costa but I bet it would have been a shit endorsement deal as well.
7] The sound of laughter is a wonderful thing
Listening to the audience laughing at the film, sometimes at moments where you had deliberately played for the laugh and occasionally when you hadn’t, was a completely lovely and rewarding experience. I don’t want to sound all luvvy about this but the buzz of treading the boards as well, even if it’s only to do the Q&A with Jeremy after the film and engage the audience and to hear them roar with laughter and even applaud makes any previous problems from the day seem a lifetime away. A true tonic.
8] At last I suspect we’ve done something good
Admittedly this film was a struggle at times; there were times of self-doubt and times where other people’s doubt brought the whole project into jeopardy but we persevered and judging by the audience’s warm response and their glowing comments afterwards it does genuinely feel that we have created something that throws a light on this amazing band that is revealing, fascinating and funny. And appreciated. Thankfully. Phew!
9] I could edit that film forever
Having sat through the film quite a few times now I am always thinking about bits I would’ve put in that were left out and things I would’ve done differently and things I wished I’d filmed. That’s inevitable I suppose. You’ve just got to move on though. At least we have the DVD with all those deleted/extra scenes to supplement it. [Yes, I’m pushing the DVD quite a lot aren’t I?]
10] This band will go on forever.
They say it in the film and I believe them. They’ll end up like the Chieftains, being wheeled on stage, gingerly taking up their positions and then still managing to rock out like a bunch of motherfucking teenagers once the music kicks in. I really believe that. It took me about three days to recover from this tour. I was a broken man. They ploughed on regardless. I have nothing but admiration for what they do. And how they do it. I’ll miss them and all their smelly, eccentric, drunken, roguish, lovable charm, I really will…
A Curious Tour
I’m absolutely wrapped up in doing the time-coding on these German subtitles for the DVD release of A Curious Life. It’s driving me mad. It’s all encompassing. I am seeing lines and lines of German text in my dreams streaming down in front of me like something from that film with Tom Cruise from a while ago, you know that one where he’s some kind of cop in the future but then he’s accused of murder or something. Anyway the work is not that difficult; it’s just laborious. It’s taking up every one of my waking moments so when I find out that the Levellers have been rehearsing diligently and are completely prepared for this Curious Tour we are about to embark on I start to feel a tad under-prepared. The idea of the tour is that we screen the film then I get up afterwards and do a Q&A with the audience then that’s followed by an acoustic performance by the band. We first did this “format” at the World Premiere of the film at East End Film Festival and it was an absolute success. It maybe was also the moment when we realised that we actually had a film that people loved and this was confirmed at the Brighton screening last November where, despite one of the poorest performances I have ever witnessed by the band, the total and unconditional love in the room saw them triumphantly through.
So here we are at the first show of the tour, Salisbury City Hall and we are working out what’s going to happen. We’ve got a large enough screen but it’s right at the back of the stage; it’s not perfect by any means but we are still learning as we go along; this is a new venture for us all.
Usually in these scenarios where you do a Q&A with the director of the film there’s a host or compere to lead you gently by the hand through this; they shower you with compliments, ask searching and incisive questions, coax out of you some hidden gem of information or hilarious anecdote that makes the experience an enjoyable one for all concerned. John Robb is an expert at this as proven by his cameo performance at the East End Premiere. Unfortunately though John’s not on tour with us to take on that role so I stumble on stage all alone before the screening to introduce the film. I make it up as I go along, probably making some reference to Stephen Boakes’s comment about “25 years of subsidised dysfunctionality” and let everyone know that I’ll be back at the end of the film to do a one man Q&A.
I return after the film to witness half the audience streaming out of the venue to get a drink and visit the toilet. I bravely, if not a tad nervously, launch into my Q&A and to be brutally honest, it’s a painful experience. A few fairly random questions followed by the obligatory “When’s the DVD out?” enquiry and rounded off by the rather bizarre query “Who was the actor who played Jeremy’s dad?” Dumbfounded and deflated I thank the audience and amble off returning to the dressing room crestfallen. I bump into Jon preparing for the show “Are you off to do your Q&A?” he asks brightly. “I’ve just done it.” I reply, limply. He looks astonished. I look sheepish.
To his absolute credit after the show Jon dives into the problem of the Q&A headfirst and pragmatically determines to make the thing work otherwise it’s not even worth me being there. He makes me feel a whole lot better about the whole affair and we resolve to make this thing work in Pontardawe.
The next day in Pontardawe it’s raining. Well obviously it is; we are in Wales after all. The venue is beautiful. Much smaller than last night, full of character and with proper screening facilities. We “screencheck” the film and it’s all good. We work out with Jac and Ian, the Levellers’ front of house people how we will co-ordinate the introduction and the Q&A. And we introduce our secret weapon: Jeremy.
After half a bottle of spiced rum I am much more confident with the introduction and I announce that Jeremy will be joining me after the screening for the Q&A. He gets an ovation when introduced to the stage after the film.
Hardly anyone leaves the room and the questions come thick and fast. Me and Jeremy bounce off each other and the audience love it. Of course we get asked when the DVD is out but we also embrace a fan-led campaign to get Jeremy’s mum and dad on Gogglebox!
We eventually leave the stage as we’ve run out of time and everyone’s happy. The Levellers play a blinding set and the night ends up in chaos at the local Pink Geranium pub. Result!
We keep to that formula at the much larger and sold out Malvern Theatre and again it works a treat, the highlight being a woman asking whether she could stroke Jeremy’s hair. He obliges manfully. It’s another successful Q&A, though it must be said that at least 90% of the questions are aimed directly at Jeremy and might not necessarily be even about the film. No matter though; we are engaging the audience and they’re loving it.
The next day, after an early wake up call and flight to Dublin we have a completely different experience. The film was to be screened in the Irish Film Institute, a venue I had last been to in about 2000 to screen a subsequently shelved film about Chumbawamba called “Well Done. Now Sod Off”. I nostalgically mentioned this in my brief introduction and then awaited Jeremy’s arrival for the Q&A as he’d flown on a later flight and ironically was stuck in traffic because of a political demonstration against increased water taxes in Ireland. With minutes to spare Jeremy arrives just as the credits are rolling and we have the pleasure of having Sunniva from the Irish Film Institute to lead the Q&A. She’s an archivist herself so the conversation, for me at least, is far more interesting and much more about the process of making the film than finding out what Jeremy’s favourite Levellers song is [for the record, on this day it was “Barrel Of The Gun” though the previous day it had been “England My Home”; he’s a fickle man I tell you].
We chat for quite some time, Jeremy expands on the “sending a turd in the post” tale and then patiently poses for photographs. Job done. I can relax and enjoy the mind-melding nonsense of “Inherent Vice” before we make our way to St Patricks Cathedral for the Levellers performance there. As an atheist it pains me to say what a wonderful setting it was for the band to play and despite a few sound problems within the cathedral it’s another amazing show.
By the time we get to Canterbury the following day though we are all a bit tired. Nobody goes to bed early in Dublin and anyway, the bar in the hotel has music blaring till about 3 in the morning. A flight and a minibus ride later we’re enjoying the beauty of Canterbury and another beautiful room in which to perform. There are a few problems with the screening but I think we get away with it and the Q&A is 100% questions for Jeremy, mostly about who is and who should be playing at Beautiful Days this year! Jeremy is a star, as usual and I can only stand back and marvel at his wonderful handling of a clearly devoted audience but Tour Manger Phil wants to pull us off as we are running over time so off we go to a rousing reception and yet another triumphant show.
We start on this Curious Tour again on the 24th February and I was pleased to be invited back to do those shows. It took us a few days to actually work out what we were doing but we’ll certainly be prepared for this next lot. All those dates can be found here:
So I’ve spent the last two years [at least!] creating this film, producing my very own baby after a very hard labour that I am finally, massively, ridiculously proud of. It’s been a struggle though; a battle, a painful, painful process riven with strife and doubt and fear. I’ve basically been through the whole creative maelstrom, step by step, that goes something like this:
1. This is awesome
2. This is tricky
3. This is shit
4. I am shit
5. This might be ok
6. This is awesome
Well, to be honest, maybe I only got to number 5 but you know, I feel as though I’ve finally cracked it. Finally all that toil and sweat and tears and sleepless nights has gotten me somewhere. To my goal. I’m living the dream. I’m high on adrenaline and relief and joy. I’ve done it. Solved the conundrum. Completed the jigsaw. Defeated the demons. I’ve finished my film!
Except I haven’t. Because this isn’t the end. No. This is just the beginning…
It’s Sunday 15th June and on a small stage in the basement of the Red Gallery in East London the Levellers are soundchecking. I’m already relieved: the band are here, there is a stage and they look happy. Given the lead-up to getting the band to agree to do this acoustic performance and the gentle wrangling and negotiating with band, crew and festival alike this is a total result! I’d entered the film into a number of film festivals and had been waiting for a “yes”; after a few knockbacks, which however polite or encouraging they are; still hurt, the wonderful East End Film Festival were very keen to screen it; they loved the film and would love to get the band to perform as well. It would be an event. I’m overjoyed and incredibly nervous at the same time. I’m trying to be blasé about the whole thing but really I’m delighted this is happening and just hope, hope, hope that everything goes to plan.
The screening is a sellout well in advance and it’s apparent that there’s a lot of Levellers fans here; definitely not a “documentary” crowd as such, and so the atmosphere is electric and expectant. The musician and writer John Robb introduces the film and admits that he has yet to see it but is confident that it will be great. And then we’re off. Squeaky bum time.
Eighty minutes later and the film has gone down really well; it’s fascinating for me watching it with a large crowd, noticing what gets a big laugh, what gets missed and what bits fall flat. I’m sat with my friend Lorraine who openly admits to not knowing the first thing about the Levellers. I have to apologise for laughing at my own film a few times but she loves it nevertheless. This makes me very happy, knowing that someone can come to the film cold and be totally engaged; we must have done something right! And apart from the wonderful audience reaction I was relieved and happy to hear and see the band themselves totally enjoying it. All those disparaging comments, the bad press and the jokes and the teasing and the one liners are embraced wholeheartedly; proof to me that this band are an amazing bunch of ne’erdowells.
We get an amazing response at the end of film, and that combined with the rush for the toilets means that most people miss the final conversation between Jeremy and Boakesy about the band’s 25 years of subsidized dysfunctionality. I don’t mind though; this response is well worth missing it for.
The Q&A that follows with John Robb flies by; I only wish we’d had time to take questions from the floor but we have to finish quickly as the Levellers acoustic performance is about to begin. Someone on twitter said they blasted the roof off the place [good going as we were in the basement] and I think they were about right. I use the word “triumph” more in jest than in seriousness but yeah, I was pretty [legally] high on the journey home back to Brighton afterwards where me and Steve [one of the exec producers from the Levellers’ office] gabble constantly about future plans and running through the evening’s events until that neverending late night train journey to Brighton inevitably sucks the life out of us and we eventually come down back to earth. What a great evening; hopefully there are going to be many more. See you at the next screening hopefully!
Sometimes things just don’t turn out the way you thought they would.
I had always wanted this film to be a combination of revealing insight into how the band function and how they’ve managed to stay together for so long without killing each other or ending up in court and a human story where we get to see and understand something of the band members’ personal lives and their characters.
Obviously Jeremy features very heavily as the leading character and we have lots of footage to understand him and love him as an individual as well as enjoy him presenting various ideas about the band.
Other band members feature less, or in some cases, a lot less due sometimes to their own willingness and desire to be involved and sometimes down to me deciding what is working and what is relevant. Occasionally an interview would go better or worse than planned and I would reassess how important or valuable that particular scene was for the film. Occasionally interviewees would be interesting and revealing off camera but as soon as the camera was switched on become a bit too guarded or self-aware or just clam up completely. Sometimes this was my fault for not pressing the right buttons, asking the right questions or trying too hard to get the interviewee to say what I wanted for the sake of my film. Other times, the interviewee just wasn’t open enough, candid enough or interesting enough. And sometimes it was just no-one’s fault; it just didn’t work it.
When I first started working with the band [and I’ve already previously mentioned this in an earlier blog] Simon scared the living daylights out of me with his scathing, first night midnight rant on the sleeper bus. He’s going to be a handful I thought. And yet what transpired was that Simon became for me at least, this loveable renegade, the loose canon, as Jeremy describes him, a man of extremes but also a charming rogue who I found to be open and honest as well as a bit bonkers at times.
Simon has a scene in the film which has caused a split amongst people who have seen it. After the death of both his mother and his long term partner Jude, Simon moves onto a houseboat. Those who know the Levellers well, will immediately recognise the significance of this because of the Simon-penned song “The Boatman” on “Levelling The Land”. He admits himself that he is finally living his dream despite the very tragic circumstances that have brought him here. I like the scene; to me it was one of the few really human moments in the film where we forget that he’s Simon from the Levellers and that here is a man struggling to readjust to a new way of life following two massive losses in his life. We see a side to him we haven’t previously seen and I buy it; I find it powerful and revealing. I also think it has a positivity and acceptance which might even be helpful and comforting for some.
But is this scene more important than learning that the Levellers never cracked America? Is listening to Simon describe his day to day routine more relevant than finding out why Stephen Boakes brushes his teeth before he goes on stage? Who knows? It’s all subjective anyway isn’t it? It’s a strange process when you’re deciding what to include and what to leave out of your film; it raises so many questions about what is the truth, whose story is this, how do I as a director, influence and manipulate the viewer, and can anyone truly make a completely objective documentary?
I believe I have created a film about the Levellers that tries its’ damnest to be honest, revealing, warm and entertaining. Not everyone will be happy with the whole thing; that’s inevitable but given the circumstances I do believe that what we have made is a touching, poignant, sometimes hilarious film which is as heartwarming as it is rocking and as Jeremy so rightly states a wonderful ”journey through 25 years of subsidised dysfunctionalism”.
I hope you enjoy it.
A few blogs ago I was on about that documentary about New York Dolls bassist Arthur “Killer” Kane called New York Doll. As part of the music documentary-by-numbers process there were a selection of celebrity talking heads telling us how amazing/influential/iconic/seminal the New York Dolls were.
Sadly, for me at least, one of those heads was Bob Geldof. To cut to the chase; I hate Bob Geldof. Not completely irrationally but, you know, close enough. I had the misfortune to meet him once (we were both playing at a very small festival in Middlesbrough so you get an idea of how prestigious it was). He was one of the most boorish, arrogant, obnoxious men I have had the displeasure to be backstage with. So when he turned up in that otherwise lovely documentary telling me stuff about the Dolls that was already apparent anyway as well as blahhing about some schmaltzy backslapping rubbish about going to see them my back was immediately up. It marred the film for me. Why was it necessary to have him there? Did it lend gravitas? Kudos? Give us some level of insider knowledge? No, not really. It was Bob Geldof talking about Bob Geldof. It just meant that the film publicity can say it features some exclusive interview footage with a twat talking bollocks.
Loads of music documentaries get celebrity musos in to usually state the obvious. Yes, this band were/are great, yes they influenced my own career massively, yes they changed music forever and so on and so on, blah, blah, blah.
Look at this list of musos featured in music docs:
I’ve nothing against Henry Rollins but appearing in 23 music docs? That’s a lot of head talking! There was a time when Paul Morley appeared in so many arts documentaries that I began to wonder how he actually found time to do anything else in his life. And after a while it inevitably becomes more about the celebrity talking rather than the subject.
Anyway, when I was making this film about the Levellers I had to make a decision about whether I went down that particular path. I thought I would give it a go. First up was Frank Turner who I interviewed backstage at Beautiful Days. Frank really wanted to do the interview because he was such a massive Levellers fan and they had influenced him massively and he could play the first two Levellers albums from start to finish. He was a lovely bloke. Down to earth, candid, engaging and funny. We only talked for about half an hour and I thought we’d got some good stuff.
The next day at the same festival I asked another “celebrity” for an interview. I explained to him what the film was about. His first question was “How long do you want?” “Ten minutes?” I replied. “Five, go and get your camera” he curtly replied. At that point, hungover as I was I thought should I just say “Look, I’m not even that bothered if you’re in the film and to be honest talking to me like that, well, you can go and fuck yourself you arrogant twat”.
But I didn’t. Some level of professionalism kicked in as I bit my tongue and went to get my camera and subsequently did a short interview with him which was a largely pointless exercise and just left me feeling dirty and depressed. I gave up on the “celebrity talking head” idea after that and re-thought the method of telling the Levellers’ story via different channels.
Comparing that experience to the warmth and humour and openness of Brian and Sheila Cunningham left me in no doubt who I would rather see up on a screen. Their passion and insight into their son spoke volumes to me and gave us an angle into the development and significance of the band which is far more enlightening than a few off-pat answers from a tired and spoilt pop star. They felt so much more “human”. And genuine. And they gave me biscuits.
As for Frank Turner, well I’m sure he’ll turn up on those ever-expanding DVD extras.
When I was in the band Chumbawamba the process of writing songs for a new album was a pragmatic, democratic process. We would talk for hours about what we wanted the album to say as a whole, we would explore themes, ideas, moods, sounds, influences whilst discussing the current political climate, in fact we were probably debating what was “trending” but nobody used such a wanky term back then. We would come up with musical and lyrical ideas, attempt to turn them into beautifully constructed songs, collate enough of them and when we felt we had explored our given concept for that particular album enough we would call it a day and get on with the job of putting the whole thing together as a piece, a work of creative art,a collective statement that we were proud of and happy with but which also we hoped, would touch the listener on a variety of levels. We hoped it would communicate something emotionally, musically, politically and maybe inspire or move someone or just give someone an enormous amount of pleasure. Not much to ask.
But then there were the b-sides.
We would always end up with a few songs that didn’t quite fit in, that didn’t quite convey a message well enough, that weren’t as well constructed, were poorly executed, too twee, too obvious or just not that memorable. And we would sit in a meeting and eventually someone in the band would sound the death kneel “we could use it as a b-side maybe?’
And that was it; songs rarely recovered from being labeled as such, seldom did they spring back to life and end up being track one side one openers or live favourites. They were functional, not-as good-as-the rest fillers and they’d invariably end up on some obscure benefit album, given away for free to some unsuspecting worthy cause only re-surfacing when it was time for the obligatory Chumbawamba “b-side and oddities” compilation album. You get the picture.
Anyway, I was reminded of that process whilst finally, finally putting this film to bed last week with our online editor, the very wonderful and talented Dave Austin. We were prepping the film for the final online and after masses of tinkering on my half and masses of tidying up on his we sat down to watch the film for one last time. It was at that point that we both had to grudgingly admit that one particular scene, as funny and informative as it was just didn’t work where it was. I’d become particularly attached to this scene; one where Jeremy and I go on a tour of York Minster, so we tried it somewhere else. It still didn’t work. There was a knowing silence in the room. Dave didn’t need to say anything and so with the brutality of a Channel 4 Executive Producer cutting a positive portrayal of one of the residents of Benefit Street I broke the silence and uttered the words “Take it out” So out it went and straight into the deleted scenes timeline, a timeline which is becoming a very, very busy timeline by now.
What I’ve realised in all of this though is that these two processes are not the same. Some of the deleted scenes we have, which will no doubt appear as DVD extras one day, are cracking little scenes full of humour and pathos and revealing anecdotes but if they don’t help tell the story you want to tell, or merely reiterate an earlier scene or detract from the main narrative or make the film drag then you’ve just got to be brutal. So a hilarious scene with didgeridoo player Boakesy brushing his teeth before a gig has also gone. Terry John and Phil Nelson telling us about the wild parties at the Metway in the 90s; gone. Mark performing solo in a wonderful little record store in Lewes; gone. The list goes on and despite these scenes being delightful and amusing they failed the “overall narrative” test.
Don’t worry though; one day you’ll be able to see them all and maybe you’ll think “Why wasn’t that in the film?!” or maybe not. Either way, I’m sad that some of those scenes aren’t in the film but know that it’s for the best. You’ll just have to wait for the DVD release later in the year to see if you agree…
So one day in December 2012 me and the uber-talented Canadian FCP editor-cum-cameraman Jim Scott set off to Crawley to film with Jeremy’s mum and dad, Brian and Sheila Cunningham. I was hoping that they could give us some back story into how Jeremy ended up doing what he did in his life and maybe we would learn something about his upbringing, his education and his early exploits.
In the words of Marti de Berghi, director of the greatest music documentary of all time, Spinal Tap, “we got more; much more”. From the moment we arrived at their secluded cul de sac when Sheila answered the front door it was apparent that they were “up” for the interview. Chaos immediately ensued. Me and Jim were shell-shocked.
Before we could even focus our Canons, check sound levels or even put our bags down Brian and Sheila launched into a detailed account of the first time they had ever seen the Levellers live (it was at Brighton Urban Free Festival if you’re interested). It was a fantastic anecdote which immediately sent us pell mell into a guided tour of the bathroom which was full of Jeremy’s artwork, and the hall (gold discs) and to bear witness to the one centimetre diameter spot of black ink on the settee in the living room (where Jeremy spilt some ink whilst illustrating a poster for the band’s Albert Hall show).
The rapport between the two of them was amazing to witness. It literally was a case of lighting the blue touch paper and standing back – well back, because Brian, an ex-boxer, found it impossible to stay sat down. He bobbed and weaved his way through the interview, occasionally leaving the room and returning with some golden nugget from Jeremy’s childhood. Jeremy had made the wise decision to leave the house whilst we talked to his mum and dad as he was well aware of their propensity for embellishment and/or mis-remembering various events. Not wanting to spend his whole time pedantically correcting them he took the dog for a walk instead. Wise, I thought, very wise.
Brian and Sheila were on fire; they were in fact like an old married couple finishing each other’s sentences, correcting each other mid-flow, rolling eyes and laughing at each other’s inability to totally recall a tale. Their stories were priceless, their candidness revealing, their unconditional love touching.
Some will love Brian and Sheila in the film and inevitably some won’t but to me they are stars, absolute stars and they have brought an aspect to the film that I could only have dreamt of. When Brian, stood up and head out of shot, proclaims that Jeremy’s friends hugged him saying “You saved our lives more than once Mr Cunningham!” my heart melts whilst guffawing loudly every time. Who’d have thought that this loveable, irascible old man was responsible for keeping the Levellers alive when they were squatting in Brighton.
We salute you Brian and Sheila Cunningham!