Working Men's Clubs, Public Halls and the most glamorous venues of them all.
Our wrestling heroes could be seen appearing at the Royal Albert Hall one night and Willenhall Baths the next.
Professional wrestling was staged in just about every town in the United Kingdom...
RADCLIFFE Civic Hall
RAMSGATE Coronation Ballroom
RAWTENSTALL Astoria Ballroom
READING The Hexagon
READING Town Hall
REDCAR Skating Rink
REDRUTH Drill Hall
RENFREW Normandy Hotel
RETFORD Majestic Cinema
RETFORD Town Hall
RHYL Gaiety Theatre
RHYL Town Hall
Eddie Rose: "Rhyl Town Hall (Orig Bandito Williams the promoter) was another favourite venue for good atmosphere and appreciative fans."
ROCHDALE Athletic Grounds
ROCHDALE College, St Mary's Gate
ROCHDALE Champness Hall
ROMFORD Football Ground
ROMFORD Brooklands Stadium
Tom Hawes: The recent fine weather takes me back to 1961 when Premier Promotions boss Frank Price put on wrestling at Brooklands, the home of Romford football club. The ring was set up in front of the old wooden stand.The wrestling only ran for a short time, as it got dark earlier the local council put a stop to the shows because of inadequate lighting in the stands.
Frank Price said he'd been getting crowds of 750 people turning up and seemed happy with that.
The wrestling I saw was as good as any I've seen at bigger venues, the wrestlers included, British & European heavyweight champ Shirley Crabtree, Eddie Capelli, who surprisingly lost to Norman Thomas but Eddie won the return match and last but not least World champ George Kidd who beat Ken Shaw.
One evening Roy "Bull" Davis was scheduled to wrestle Prince Kumali but unfortunately the wrestling was cancelled due to rain. In a newspaper the next day was the following . " THE FINAL DAMPER". Wrestler "Bull Davies" travelled over 300 miles from Cornwall to compete in an open air show at Romford, Essex, last night, only to find it had been rained off.
It was a risky business putting on open air events, I don't know if insurance was available for cancelations due to the weather, if a wrestler turned up surely he got paid. Then there's advertising, the cost of printing tickets and the fees of agents who sold them."
Tom Hawes: Frank price had a brief spell in 1961 of promoting wrestling in Romford at the Brooklands stadium but after that Romford was devoid of wrestling until September 1970 when Dale Martin began a series of promotions at the Odeon cinema.
In the early 1960's popular music promoters used the Odeon for their one night stand package tours, The Beatles, Rolling Stones and the Animals were acts that performed there. But no wrestling promotions. Also in the early 1960's there were wrestling promotions in nearby, Dagenham, Ilford and Barking, by 1970 there were none.
Maybe Dale Martin were inspired by the success of Paul Lincoln and his successful promotions at Granada theatres, but Dale Martin didn't enjoy such success at Romford. They only put on seven promotions the last one was in June 1971.
Local wrestler Alan Sergeant was on four of those bills, one of those bouts was for the Southern Area welterweight title against defending champion, Mick Mcmanus.
Sergeant of course lost. There were some big names on the bills, Pat Roach drew with Kendo Nagasaki ,Jackie Pallo, Steve Logan , Ian Campbell, Tibor Szakacs, Les Kellet, The Hells Angels and Alan Colbeck wrestled at the Odeon. The one thing that clearly showed that wrestling popularity had declined was the absence of any wrestlers visiting from overseas. When wresting was at its peak wrestlers came from Europe and the rest of the world to wrestle for joint promotions.
That last Romford promotion was also the end of going to watch wrestling regularly for me.
ROSS ON WYE Roxy
ROSS ON WYE Top Spot Ballroom
ROTHERHAM Clifton Hall
George Johnson: "I live in Rotherham and started watching wrestling in the 1960's at Rotherham baths.In those days it was on every week. I watched it until the 1980's. I particularly enjoyed it when Brian Dixon introduced the ladies. My favorite was Mitzi Mueller who I saw on 5 occasions though sadley not on television."
Alan Brooke: "The first time I saw Jack Pye he was fighting Jose Arroyo at Rotherham Baths 22 Feb 1962. I think Pye was disqualified (there’s a surprise) and Arroyo was given the fight. I was only young at the time but had been looking forward to seeing the legend Pye although he must have been in his late 50s then".
RUGBY Benn Memorial Hall
RUGBY Co-Op Hall
RUGBY Granada Cinema
RUNCORN Baths Hall
RUSHDEN Drill Hall
RUSHDEN Windmill Club
RYDE, ISLE OF WIGHT Commodore
RYDE, ISLE OF WIGHT Esplanade Pavilion
RYDE, ISLE OF WIGHT Town Hall
RYTON, TYNE & WEAR Social Club