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The Melchett Road Collective


Nick lived in various places such as Richmond Hill Road, Selly Park and Handsworth Woods. Nick and Karl moved into the ‘Collective’ at Melchett Road in Edgbaston. Other people who lived there were Graham Allen and Frank Langham (older man of an Irish background) and Trevor who was Cultural Studies lecturer at Birmingham University. “There were no rules at the house, it was ‘very GLF’, everything was negotiated. There was a weekly meeting every Friday evening and everybody had to be in for this. There was a litre and half bottle of Frascati for the evening and nobody left until the agenda was finished. Everybody talked which included how the last meeting had gone, how they renegotiated things, who had done what and all other types of things.”

Nick describes the house “The house was off Carpenter Drive, it was a three storey modern house, two rooms on each floor, like a lighthouse in a great big block of other houses like it. It was a very middle class environment; there were architecture students from Norway opposite who were very well heeled; all the other houses had families. We were on the end of the road, we were quite distinctive and the neighbours could not help but know, we dressed in a quite flamboyant style.”

Nick remembers that his brother visited with his partner and Nick was wearing a sarong and this was something “I remember my brother came to see me with his partner at the time who was very wealthy, I was walking out to take the grass cuttings down the road and I remember he found it strange that I had a sarong on at the time, that stuck in my brother’s memory as that was the end of his relationship with her.”

Contributed by: Nick Stanley, 63

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