The Max Miller Appreciation Society's

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The Max Miller Appreciation Society was established in January 1999 in Brighton to celebrate its hero Max Miller, the Cheeky Chappie. It has over 250 members world-wide, thanks to the website and is proud to be supported by an array of esteemed celebrities.

PRESIDENT

ROY

HUDD
 

O.B.E.

VICE-PRESIDENT

WYN
CALVIN

M.B.E.

OSt-J

 

PATRON

MICHAEL
ASPEL


 

O.B.E.

PATRON

JOHN
 

FISHER

 

The Society was founded by Mick Toner and Christine Jones who are both Honorary members. Other honorary members are Frank & Darren Sargent (family members), Josephine Blake, Brian Dazley, John Henty, John Ripley, Robert Ross, David & Vanessa Sewell, Adam Trimingham and Peter Webster.

Statue

It was the ambition of the Society to see a statue of Max in the City of his birth. Peter Webster was commissioned to sculpture the statue, but much money was needed to finance it. Roy Hudd was instrumental initializing fund raising and contacted all his showbiz pals for donations. The Society itself raised money by a major variety show in the Theatre Royal and the publication of its Blue Book which sold over 2,500. A reprint followed in 2015 which is still selling well.

The bronze statue was unveiled on 1st. May 2005 by Sir Norman Wisdom, Roy Hudd, June Whitfield, George Melly, Mayor Pat Drake and Josephine Blake in New Road Brighton in front of a vast crowd. Afterwards a celebrity celebration lunch was held in the Corn Exchange. Among the celebrities attending were Sir Norman Wisdom, Roy Hudd, June Whitfield, George Melly, Jimmy Perry, Terry Garoghan, Sheila Mathews, Judy Cornwall, Joan Hinde, Wyn Calvin, Keith Simmonds, Lis Solkham, Dora Bryan, Geoffrey Hughes, John Bardon, Michael Leader, Debbie Flitcroft, Sir Peter Blake, John Fisher and many more.

Because of road works in New Road, the statue was moved to a new site in the Pavilion Gardens. A second unveiling took place on 12th August 2007. The statue was unveiled by Patron Ken Dodd OBE, Patron Michael Aspel OBE, Dennis Norden OBE and Dora Bryan OBE.

On Monday, 30th May 2011, Al Murray, the Pub Landlord, pushed the button to light up the statue. He entertained a large crowd with his memories of Max and by reciting Max’s When roses are red…

Plaques and Signs

Blue commemorative plaques have been erected on three of Max’s former homes.

  • 25, Burlington Street, Brighton unveiled by Cyril Fletcher for the British Music Hall Society

  • Ashcroft, Kingston Lane, Shoreham-by-Sea (2000) – unveiled by Bill Pertwee and Ken Dodd for the Max Miller Appreciation Society

  • 160 Marine Parade, Kemptown, Brighton. (2006) – unveiled by Roy Hudd and Michael Aspel for the Max Miller Appreciation Society.

A carved paving stone on the Walk of Fame in the Brighton Marina includes Max with over 100 paving stones of other celebrities with Brighton connections (1999).

The Memorial Tablet (1963) on a wall of the Downs Crematorium, Brighton. The Society arranged for it to be carefully restored.

The Max Miller Walk, also known as the Madeira Terraces, Brighton was officially acknowledged by the unveiling of a street sign in May 2012.

Exhibitions

The Society curated an exhibition of Max Miller’s memorabilia at the Brighton Museum. It was opened by Dora Bryan assisted by Carol Kaye on 13 May 2003. The exhibition ran for 18 months.

The Society has a permanent exhibition of Max Miller posters, photographs, etc. at Bardley’s Fish Restaurant in Baker Street, Brighton. It was launched in 7 June 2009 by Patron Michael Aspel OBE. In August 2009 Patron Ken Dodd OBE visited the exhibition.

Variety Shows

The Society has produced 10 variety shows, a policy to bring back good entertainment as in Max’s day.

Let’s Make It Stand Up for MaX  at the Theatre Royal (24 November 2003) starred George Melly with John Chilton’s Streetwarmers, Matt Lucas, Arthur Brown, Des Lynam, Terry Garoghan, Don Partridge, Clive Allen and Chris Green as Ida Barr.

Two show followed presented by the Brick Lane Music Hall (2007 & 2008). And subsequent productions starred Paul Daniels Komedia 2010), Steve Hewlett (2012 Komedia, 2013 Dome).

Convention Weekends

These take place on a weekend in November. Generally, it is a two-day affair, the first comprising a social meeting with a speaker or film show. Ever popular is Gerry Oxley’s film night. He assembles film clips of variety artists of yesteryears.

The annual dinner follows on the next evening in the presence of the Mayor and guest celebrities. This is a grand affair with top cabaret artistes. 2019 was really special with Brandyn Shaw & His ‘Radio’ Rhythm Makers and special guests President Roy Hudd, Patron John Fisher, BMHS chairman Adam Borzone and the Mayor of the City of Brighton & Hove Cllr. Alexandra Philips.

Outside events

 

The Society has been present at the Kemptown Carnival which is held in June. Honorary Member John Ripley as Max manages to attract a large crowd that loves to hear jokes particularly the blue ones and enjoys John’s singing. Photo shows Mark Walsh doing his George Formby impression.

The Cheeky Chappie ChariTEA Parties are held annually in the grounds of the Pavilion Café. Tea, sandwiches and cakes are supplied by David & Vanessa Sewell and all money raised through entrance fees, raffles and other attractions go directly to charities. Over £25,000 has been raised over the years by the ChariTEAs.

Meetings

Five times a year the Society organizes social meetings for its members. Well-known speakers entertain us with their stories or presentations. Past speakers have included actors David Lodge, Frank Williams, Pamela Cundell, Chris Ellison, John Mann, Carol Cleveland, Michael Aspel and many names behind the scenes.

In addition to these regular meeting, the Society organizes special do’s such as fish & Chip suppers, theatre visits and so forth. Some of its members are also supporters of the British Music Hall Society where there is a mutual connection.

The Max Miller Collection

The Society strives to collect memorabilia and has in its possession theatre and film posters, programmes, flyers, sheet music, magazines, recordings and is proud to own Max’s original 1940s suit, a dressing gown, also Bill Pertwee’s Max Miller suit which was worn in the Hi-Di-Hi stage show and a hat worn by Frank Skinner in a recent TV show with Max content.

If you have enjoyed this website, why not join THE MAX MILLER APPRECIATION SOCIETY. As a member you will receive the journal There'll Never Be Another issued quarterly packed with information, receive discounts on entry to the Society's tea parties, annual dinners and special events, make contact with other members and keep those memories of Max, music hall and variety alive
For an Membership Application Form in PDF, click on the button
                       

 

If you have memories of Max, questions or just wish to comment on this website, we would be delighted to hear from you, Just e-mail us, click on button: 

                     
Alternatively you may wish to write to the Membership Secretary: 
Jack Strutt, 
111 Brentwood Road, 
Brighton, 

BN1 7ET,

England

Sir Ken Dodd, OBE
 

Sir Ken Dodd OBE who passed away on 11 March 2018 at the age of 90 was a patron of the Max Miller Appreciation Society. He was more than generous with his time. He honoured the Society with three visits to its events. The first, when he unveiled the blue commemorative plaque on Max Miller’s former home Ashcroft in Shoreham-by-Sea (22 July, 2000); the second, when he unveiled the relocated Max Miller statue in New Road, Brighton (12 August, 2007) and the third, when he visited the Society’s exhibition in Bardsley’s Restaurant Brighton (3 August, 2009).  At each event he brought laughter, happiness and fun to us all. He took delight in talking to every one of us, signing autographs and having his photo taken. He would stay at the event until the very last person was left happy.                                       

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