By Mark McConville
RARE images of the original Nazi skinheads have been re-released in a book by the photographer who followed their UK street invasions.
The intimate and unselfconscious images show the skinheads taking over Southend during a Bank Holiday Monday, with the large group dominating the main street and the beach – to the consternation of the locals.
One shot shots a skin perform a Nazi salute next to his mate who is wearing a swastika t-shirt while an elderly woman looks on.
Other images show a skinhead mooning the camera, a group enjoying themselves as one pretends to kick the other in the head and other skinheads making their way around London.
The photographs were published in amateur photographer Kim Rennie’s (57) book London Skinheads.
While his raucous photos were taken by him in the Summer of 1983, Kim chose to release the images to celebrate the fortieth anniversary of the 100 Club Punk Special on Oxford Street in London on September 20-21st 1976, which pushed the then new punk rock movement from the underground into the mainstream.
“Everyone in the pictures were part of the then London skinhead scene which was centered on the 100 Club in Oxford Street and the Blue Coat Boy (Angel Islington) music gig scene,” he said.
“They are my record of those days.
“There was often suspicion from the skinheads due to my having a ‘professional’ camera.
“Many of the skins would take photos at gigs, or on Bank Holiday Mondays at Southend, but used Instamatics.
“Having said that, in those days whenever you pointed a camera at a skin he was a natural showman.”
In September 1976, the 100 Club played host to the first international punk festival.
Like a who’s who to the punk movement, The Sex Pistols, The Clash, The Jam, the Buzzcocks and The Damned were among the bands to play at this event and this is where promoter Ron Watt’s and Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren collaborated.
The 100 Club remains open to this day despite a scare in 2010 when it was announced it would close due to continuing losses.
A campaign to keep the venue open was successful after support from musicians including Sir Paul McCartney.
A partnership with Converse was arrange which allowed the club to remain open.
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