Okay I passed 60 some years ago but I am still hip to the beat with pop music and keep in touch with the hit parade. I admit that shed, garage and rap music is not my scene but each generation must embrace its own music tastes.

I love listening to music from the 1950s and 1960s and I guess most of us are locked into the songs we grow up with rather than the modern day. Over the decades I have attended concerts featuring old stars like Billy Fury, Marty Wilde, The Searchers and Herman's Hermits to mention a few. Okay grey hair may be the fashion at these events but the audiences revel in what I call real hits that have stood the test of time.

Tucked away in Borehamwood is a venue that once hosted memorable names from the pop world in that 1960s heyday when you needed to sell 60,000 records a day, not a week, to get to number one in the charts.

The Maxwell Community Centre still thrives almost unchanged serving a great variety of community activity over half a century later. Of course the facility has been updated but remains essentially a hub of the community. Alas it is under threat from its owner Hertfordshire County Council but surely one of the last such venues must survive not just for nostalgia but because it is still vibrant today.

The centre was opened at the beginning of the 1960s by I think Cliff Richard, who was starring in films such as Summer Holiday in the adjacent Elstree Studios.

In the mid 1960s it became a venue for many up and coming bands. Thanks to the efforts of local historian Simon Gee, many of those concerts are now coming to light and some of you may have even attended them. The list of artists includes The Byrds, Georgie Fame, Alan Price, The Yardbirds, The Foundations and Fleetwood Mac, to name a few. The Who appeared twice and on one occasion were supported by a young Elton John, who apparently has said he met John Entwistle at the gig.

Many years ago a frail and dying Peter Cushing offered to lay down in front of the bulldozers with me to protect Elstree Studios. That moved me greatly and I would do the same for Maxwell Centre if ever threatened by here today and gone tomorrow public servants who do not even live in our community.

Over the decades Elstree Studios has played host to many pop stars recording videos on their sound stages. I recall perhaps the two most famous being Queen with Bohemian Rhapsody and Paul McCartney with Mull Of Kintyre, but that is just the start. For a long time Paul rented stage five for rehearsals for his band Wings. The stage was built in the 1950s and was used as the home of the 1960s television series The Avengers and in the 1970s appeared as a bus garage in the television spin off films of On The Buses. It was demolished to make way for Tesco. I met Paul twice at Elstree. The first time was in the 1980s when he was starring in a film called Give My Regards To Broad Street. I have told this anecdote before so I will skip over it to the next occasion. That was on the giant silent stage six about 1988 or 1989 when he was rehearsing for a world tour with a live audience. Alas, that stage was also lost to Tesco. I recall he signed our petition to save the then threatened Elstree Studios but perhaps I should have kept that petition page rather than handing it to the council. I guess it would be worth a few bob on eBay today

The only pop star I recall declining to meet was around the same time. His name was Michael Jackson and he was making a private visit to the set of Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade. I was not a fan but perhaps it was a big mistake as I could have dined out or bored you with such an encounter. Ironically years later he was due to rehearse at Elstree Studios for his London concerts but sadly died before they happened.

I must be honest and say I actually do not listen to the charts today, nor have I met any of the big names of music of the present day. I doubt I would even recognise them. However, they represent what the public want to listen to and I applaud them. Whether they survive the test of time is for another generation to decide. Until next time I am off to listen again to Let's Twist Again and Hi Ho Silver Lining whilst I wish you all a happy and healthy week.