It finally happened. Sunday 31st March saw the last ever Searchers show at The Stables, Wavendon.
Wavendon is a very intimate venue that holds around 455 seats and is a great venue.
The only downside is the back stage area is just 4 dressing rooms and a green room which holds around 15 people. Ok for a normal gig, but when its a bands last ever show after nearly 60 years, it means its going to be very cramped.
There was all sorts of people back stage. Friends and family members from all 6 members (band, Phil & John S) as well agents from abroad and a few famous faces.
I also had family and friends in the audience (they had bought tickets) so I met them in the auditorium before the show. After the customary trip to the local Wetherspoons for food. There I met and had photos with people before disappearing at 7.30pm to get ready for an 8pm show.
This show sold out hours after going on sale and there were a few people in the cafe asking if anyone had a spare ticket they could buy.
The venue themselves asked us to do another show on 1st April, which was turned down and even asked us to do a matinee on the 31st. Again this was turned down due to us being in Weymouth the night before.
The band walked out as normal, but on this occasion we were greeted by a standing ovation. This caught us all out and Frank turned to me as Mike Read belted out as he always has done for 20 odd years and Frank was close to tears.
The show proceeded like every show I have been involved with in the last 9 years. there was the odd occasion where I had to stop reminding myself 'Thats the last time I'll play that song' Farmer John did get to me in the first half as I love that song.
The 2nd half was like any other show, but it was during Needles that it suddenly dawned on me.
I took my phone on stage for the 2nd half and managed to get a quick shot at the end of When you walk in the room and before the start of the hits medley.
At the end we had a hectic meet & greet with one very large queue. We then shot off to quickly change and then have some food at the 'party' after.
My party was cut short as I had to load the drums into Sams car. Its amazing how much equipment you accumulate over the years!
Once that was done it was time to say good bye (I don't like good byes, its always 'till next time') to everyone.
Sadly John McNally had shot away quietly, but I was able to say a proper good bye and thanks to Frank, Spencer, John Semark, Phil and Alan Field.
It was only when I got home at 12.30am and had to unload the car, did it finally sink in.