Remember When: 'Berkshire's last biker pub' faced closure

This week's Remember When features the end of the road for the BJ's pub in Maidenhead and Peter Andre paying a visit to Boulters Lock.

1977: A group of infants at St Luke’s School created a giant mural to give to their fathers, all of whom were firefighters at the local station.

The children were asked if they would like to make a special picture to hang on the station’s rest room wall.


1982: Track-suited campaigners carry placards and banners crowded into the public gallery of the Town Hall council chamber.

They were there to persuade planning sub-committee members that Maidenhead Netball League needs more courts.

A cheer went up from the netball players when the application for additional hard surface courts and floodlights in Kidwells Park was approved.


1987: Babs King celebrated 25 years’ service to the King George VI Club.

The mayor, Cllr Bill Cooley, presented her with a gold necklace at a special party.


1992: The Bounty pub’s annual raft race made a real splash as people turned out to see 10 teams build their vessel and tackle the watery course from the pub to Bourne End railway bridge and back.


1997: Residents of Hurley transformed their village into another world as the 50th annual fete was joined by visitors from another galaxy.

Star Wars characters including Luke Skywalker, R2D2, Chewbacca and Obi Wan Kenobi impressed the judges as they materialised out of the crowd as part of the children’s fancy dress competition.


1997: The battle for ‘Berkshire’s last bikers’ pub’ was lost.

‘The Big Red Machine’, otherwise known as BJ’s in Grenfell Road, was set to be bulldozed to make way for 39 new flats owned by Maidenhead and District Housing Association.

Barmaid Karen Fitzgerald said she would be ‘gutted’ to say goodbye to the venue, which was rumoured to have harboured a robber during stagecoach days.

She said: “It’s a brilliant pub for atmosphere. It’s definitely got a bit of history, if it is a gory one. And you couldn’t wish for better customers.”


1997: Weekend Show presenters Andi Peters and Emma Forbes were bowled over by the enthusiastic welcomes from Maidonians when they stopped off at Boulters Lock.

Maidenhead was the third stop for the action-packed eight-week show, which was broadcasting from different locations on the River Thames.

Among those messing around on the river aboard the show’s luxury boat were pop idols Peter Andre and Robbie Williams.

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