Dancehall in County Arcade

Bunkers, shelters and other buildings
Post Reply
oldleedsman
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri 06 Jul, 2007 7:57 am

Post by oldleedsman »

In the mid-70s there used to be an underground shopping precinct underneath County Arcade on the Headrow side- you entered it via one of the shops by the middle section of the arcade. I seem to remember it being a nightclub/dance venue before that. Can anyone tell me more?

User avatar
chameleon
Site Admin
Posts: 5462
Joined: Thu 29 Mar, 2007 6:16 pm

Post by chameleon »

Are you sure it was the County Arcade? Being my 'era' as it were, I'm sure I would remember that, but it doesn't ring any bells at all. There was of course the Mecca in the County arcade bu tby that time it had been changed into an indoor mini-market - with prices rather lower than the present day incumbents!

oldleedsman
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri 06 Jul, 2007 7:57 am

Post by oldleedsman »

The Mecca - that rings a bell, so that must be it. Wasn't there a downstairs bit? What I remember was certainly dark and dingy.

oldleedsman
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri 06 Jul, 2007 7:57 am

Post by oldleedsman »

Found a photo at you-know-where.
Attachments
__TFMF_xxovbq55gycllhq44u3sox45_19200fbe-f7ca-4ab5-a4c9-941adadafebd_0_main.jpg
__TFMF_xxovbq55gycllhq44u3sox45_19200fbe-f7ca-4ab5-a4c9-941adadafebd_0_main.jpg (114.67 KiB) Viewed 4531 times

LS1
Posts: 2177
Joined: Mon 23 Jul, 2007 8:30 am

Post by LS1 »

Does anyone know why it was called the Mecca Locarno. Mecca I assume to be Mecca in Saudi Arabia and Locarno is somewhere in Switzerland I think there was a Locarno treaty in 1925 guaranteeing the new European borders post WWI.Seems strange that they should be named after these places, and although there are Mecca Bingo places outside Leeds it still intreagues me....Would be grateful if anyone could tell me the answer!

oldleedsman
Posts: 185
Joined: Fri 06 Jul, 2007 7:57 am

Post by oldleedsman »

LS1 wrote: Does anyone know why it was called the Mecca Locarno. Mecca I assume to be Mecca in Saudi Arabia and Locarno is somewhere in Switzerland I think there was a Locarno treaty in 1925 guaranteeing the new European borders post WWI.Seems strange that they should be named after these places, and although there are Mecca Bingo places outside Leeds it still intreagues me....Would be grateful if anyone could tell me the answer! There must have been lots of them all over the country: look at this link which includes the above photo.http://www.meccadancing.com/photogallery/photos.htm

Chrism
Posts: 1828
Joined: Sun 20 Jan, 2008 8:26 am

Post by Chrism »

I think Mecca were a ballroom company way back. I have no idea on the word Locarno. I remember the shops underneath the Mecca, and it was dark down there. They used to have a DJ on saturday afternoons. So it was full of teens in there, I was one of them.
Sit thissen dahn an' tell us abaht it.

User avatar
liits
Posts: 1153
Joined: Sun 25 Mar, 2007 11:24 am
Location: North London
Contact:

Post by liits »

[From the dictionary of Common Phrases] The name Mecca, pertaining to dancehalls, cinemas and theatres derives from the name of the Islamic holy city of Mecca to which al Islamists must journey one in their lifetime. Thus, the phrase “a Mecca for…” means a place to which everybody will go.I guess that this is where the company got the name from.The “shopping centre in the Mecca came about after a fire in the dancehall put paid to any further dancing. I don’t remember it lasting long, probably because the stuff on sale was, well, tat.

Trojan
Posts: 1990
Joined: Sat 22 Dec, 2007 3:54 pm

Post by Trojan »

We never called it the "Locarno" always "Mecca" there was one in the Merrion Centre, one at Bradford, and one at Wakey - I think they my all have been called "Mecca Locarno"I seem to remember that there was a bar area upstairs but not licenced - it had big squashy seats. Speaking of dance halls - we used to go to the Astoria on Rounday Road as well - we had a couple of works do's there.
Industria Omnia Vincit

Ollie
Posts: 45
Joined: Wed 20 Feb, 2008 9:47 pm

Post by Ollie »

Trojan wrote: We never called it the "Locarno" always "Mecca" I seem to remember that there was a bar area upstairs but not licenced - it had big squashy seats. Remember when Jimmy Saville started of as the resident DJ...then years later I used to drink in the bar upstairs in the Mecca (County Arcade)...you had to join and you got a laminated card with your pic on it (one of those railway booth pics)...no card no entry...on some Sat nights you use to get the Leeds United players Jackie Charlton, Billy Bremner, Gary Sprake and a few others in there, the birds where round them like flies...they could put the booze away, the players that is... not the birds
Ex Merchant Seaman, jumped ship in NZ in 1970...ex pat Leeds Lad. Born/lived lower end Camp Road, then up to York Road in the early sixties.

Post Reply