The Hartbeats at the Maison de Dance in Stockton, with the master of ceremonies the late and great Jack Marwood. With Jack are George Hart Senior, Roly Thompson, John Rogan and George Hart. John Hart is in the background at the drum kit. Jack Marwood was, of course, leader of Jack Marwood & his Orchestra. He was a great musician and liked by all the groups who worked for him. Underneath the stage at the Maison de Dance, we are told, was a cellar trap door with a passage leading to the old Empire building on the site of the old Stockton Castle.
A very rare photograph of The Hartbeats taken by Marg Dickinson at Easington Welfare Hall on April 30th, 1962 and used with thanks. It shows John Hart on drums, Roly Thompson on rhythm guitar, George Hart on lead, Brian Gibson on vocals with John Rogan on bass.
George Hart with a Fender Stratocaster in 1960 and, on the right, with a Telecaster taken in Tunisia sometime during the early 1970's.
John Hart on drums and, on the right, a photograph which dates back to 1963 and was taken after The Hartbeats won a band competition. Geoffrey Alder who is playing the white Stratocaster says, "I remember one of the other bands was The Haft'a Darkks. Two of the band members were brothers called Alec and Brian Weegram I believe?" Other Haft'a Darkks members included Pete Maunder on rhythm guitar and Billy Collier on lead. The photograph shows Geoffrey Alder with a white Fender Stratocaster, Roly Thompson with the Gibson guitar, Peter Trundley on Gibson bass, Harry Bilton – the lead vocalist and holding the trophies - and John Hart on drums. Geoffrey Alder replaced George Hart as lead guitarist and John Hart is George's brother. Peter Trundley took over on bass guitar after John Rogan left the band to join Adam Faith and The Roulettes.
The Hartbeats outside the Catcote Hotel - Geoff, Peter, Harry, John and Roly.
The Hartbeats at Hartlepool Community Centre in 1963.
The Hartbeats in John Hart's front room in 1963. The LP they are looking at is "Joe Brown -Live" which was recorded at the Globe Theatre, in Stockton during 1962/63.
The Hartbeats perform at a local dance.
This photograph, from 1965, shows John Hart, George Hart and Derek Allen at the back with Roly Thompson and Ken Officer in the front.
Two photographs of John and George Hart at the Causeway, in Hartlepool, October 2006. Photograph © Stan Laundon.
George and brother John enjoying a drink at a Blues Club Night in The Causeway, Hartlepool in October, 2006.
George Hart, who was the founder member and lead guitarist of the 60's Hartlepool band The Hartbeats, passed way during the early hours of May 27th, 2008 after suffering from cancer. He was 64. He started his musical career at the age of ten when he studied keyboards. At 15 he opted to play guitar and, along with his brother John, founded The Hartbeats. In later years he also played with The Plainsmen, The Reaction Show Group, Two of Hearts, The Harts Showgroup and The Hart Family who won the ITV television show "New Faces" in 1974.
This page is dedicated to the memory of George Hart.
A personal tribute to George Hart by Stan Laundon.
It is always sad when a friend or colleague dies. It was a privilege for me to have known George since the 1960's. He was the founder of The Hartbeats - without any doubt, in my eyes, the best group that Hartlepool had ever seen. George was extra special. He was a guitarist we all wanted to be like. He was a true gentleman. It was a pleasure to have known him and an even greater pleasure to share a stage with him as I did a few times since 2004. George may you rest in peace and show them all how it's done up there with the Angel Band.
A Musical Tribute:
Former Reaction and Toffees band member, Barry McGurk has set up a music site that will surely interest our Bands' members. His site includes "Recordings from Yesteryear" - several made with musicians from Hartlepool in the 60's, particularly George Hart, with whom Barry wrote songs. Included are recordings from the Hartbeats and the Hart Family. There are also the earliest recordings made by Prefab Sprout in Barry's house in the late 70's who went on the have international critical acclaim and commercial success in the 1980's. Once on Barry's home page you can access details of the the old recordings by clicking "Recordings from Yesteryear." To hear them open the drop down menu at the top and click on the track you want to listen to. Barry says if anyone has any comments, or corrections to the text, he can be emailed through his site.
All photographs on this page are copyright to their respective owners and must not be used, or copied, in anyway without prior written permission. All credit is given wherever possible.
The John Rogan article is courtesy of the Northern Daily Mail.
This website is not responsible for the content of external internet sites
Copyright © Stan Laundon.com
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