DALSTON SHOULD BE RESONATING some time this bank-hol weekend to a great tock-tock, a brmmm-brmmming, a hum-humming.
No need for alarm: it would not, one hopes, be a squad of pavement-mounting scooters with pillioned smartphone-snatchers but a platoon of Mods making their annual return to the London district where the lads above learnt how to become über-stylists and cool riders.
Precursors in some ways of the hipsters of the early Noughties, Mods were also, according to press and police, notorious in the Sixties for rumbling — OK, brawling — with the motorbiking Rockers who, straddling their big, powerful machines, looked down on the Mods, with their little Lambrettas and Vespas, as easy-peasy riders.
The cheery chappies in this picture, rather than seeking a ruck, were more concerned with the day’s pop songs and the latest threads, both for them and their machines, which eventually came to be festooned with an unfeasibly large number of lights.
The shock news is, however, that the Dalston Mods say they won’t be riding into the heart of hipsterdom for their reunion, despite their name. No, they’ve moved out to the home counties and further, as age has given them with a yearning for a different life. (And who can blame them, given the state of Dalston only a few decades ago? Think down-at-heel.)
The veterans will be polishing up their vintage scooters to reassemble in, of all places Hornchurch, Essex, tomorrow Friday, before departing for a long weekend in booked accommodation in fish ’n’ chips-scented Brighton, East Sussex.
This time no fighting is likely: they won’t be fooled again.
David Altheer 220819
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