Purple Hearts and Coronets

Dancehalls, Glitterballs and DJs - From the Pleasure Garden to the Discotheque - Bruce Lindsay

Bruce Lindsay [+-]
Music Journalist and Social Historian
Bruce Lindsay is a freelance music journalist and social history researcher. He is the author of Shellac and Swing: A Social History of the Gramophone in Britain (Fonthill Media, 2020) and Two Bold Singermen and the English Folk Revival: The Lives, Song Traditions and Legacies of Sam Larner and Harry Cox (Equinox Publishing, 2020).


These new entertainment venues soon drew the attention of the authorities and the mainstream press. Soon after it opened, The Discotheque was accused of being the centre of London’s trade in amphetamines and a haven for runaways and other undesirable types. Perceptions of The Discotheque were soon being applied by a ‘shocked’ press to any other venue that offered the nation’s youth a place to dance to the new style of music: discos had barely arrived on British streets before they were being seen by some as a debauched threat to the moral and physical well-being of Britain’s youth, just like the Pleasure Gardens and Penny Gaffes before them. The beginning of the British disco scene was the beginning of conflicting images of discos as desirable, stylish, fashionable, drug-sodden, dangerous and degenerate.

Notify A Colleague


Lindsay, Bruce. Purple Hearts and Coronets. Dancehalls, Glitterballs and DJs - From the Pleasure Garden to the Discotheque. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. Oct 2025. ISBN 9781000000000. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=44958. Date accessed: 22 Feb 2024 doi: 10.1558/equinox.44958. Oct 2025

Dublin Core Metadata