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King's Heath's Ritz Ballroom and the Regan Circuit

King's Heath's Ritz Ballroom (or more accurately the Ritz Dance and Social Club) on York Road was one of 4 venues run by Ma and Pa Regan from the late 50's onto the early 70's. The others were the Plazas in Handsworth and Old Hill and the Brum Kavern (or Gary Owen Club) in Small Heath. The venues became known as the Regan circuit and quickly estabiished themselves as a stepping stone to fame and glory for up and coming local musicians such as The Move, The Spencer Davis Group and The Rockin' Berries. They also gave Birmingham debuts to The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Kinks and The Who among others.


BELOW: Midland Beat advert for the Regan venues


Acknowledging the Ritz Ballroom's pivotal role in Birmingham's musical heritage, the then Lord Mayor unveiled Birmingham Civic Society's first Musical Heritage Plate at a ceremony in July 2012 that resulted in York Road being closed to traffic for one of the first times!


The Regans also engaged a local group called The Modernaires or Mods for short to be the resident band at the Ritz. Here they are in the 1960's and re-united at the unveiling of the Musical Heritage Plate.



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