When Snowflake was a hot Hartlepool hit at the height of summer

Snowflake were, left to right, Allan Jacques, his wife Pat, Lloyd Smith and his wife Gwenda.

Snowflake were, left to right, Allan Jacques, his wife Pat, Lloyd Smith and his wife Gwenda.

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It was the summer of 1968 when we first featured a new group which had its own claim to fame.

At the height of a hot Hartlepool summer, Snowflake arrived on the music scene.

How we reported Snowflake in 1968.

How we reported Snowflake in 1968.

The band was, unusually at the time, made up of two man-and-wife teams and their big hope was not to claim fame and fortune - but to entertain.

They had gone down well at their early shows and were keen for more. We caught up with them in June 1968 and now we’re wondering what happened to Snowflake.

They were Lloyd Smith, 22, and wife Gwenda, 18, and Allan Jacques, 21, and his wife Pat, 20. The quartet made their debut that year in a function which was organised by the boiler shop at the South Durham Steel and Iron Company.

Between the band and the boiler shop, they put together a show at the Rift House Social Club and entertained guests with a selection of songs written and composed by the group’s leader and lead guitarist Lloyd Smith.

This week’s weather may make the group’s name seem inappropriate (they call themselves Snowflake) but if enthusiasm counts for anything, then I predict a big future for them

Northern Daily Mail reporter, 1968

The Northern Daily Mail reporter at the time said: “If enthusiasm counts for anything, then I predict a big future for them.”

Who remembers the band? Lloyd worked as an electrician at ICI and Allan was a fitter’s mate.

In 1968, the group was concentrating on songs with a folk influence and our reporter said: “It is refreshing these days to learn that they have not set their sights firmly and irrevocably on a purely financial target (although, of course, they do hope that national success might come their way in the future.”

Lloyd’s talents seemed to extend in all directions. As well as being a musician, he also had a talent as a painter with either brush or pencil. His parents lived in Burbank Street in Hartlepool.

Certainly in 1968, their plans were going well - until illness struck.

At the time of their interview with the Mail, all performances were on hold as all of the band had been struck down by influenza.

Our reporter said at the time: “These Hartlepool youngsters will soon be back on the musical trail.”

Can you remember Snowflake? Did you see any of their shows and can you tell us more about them.

These were the days of Pete Brady, the David Symonds Show and Pete Murray on Radio 1.

Of Friday Night Is Music Night with Irene Sandford and John Barrow, the Now And Then musical mixture with Alan Dell, and Jazz At Night with John Dunn.

But Hartlepool had its own developing music scene and we’re hoping you can tell us more about it.

Get in touch and fill in the blanks.

Contact Chris Cordner by calling (0191) 5017473 or email chris.cordner@jpress.co.uk