The PaLace and the Punks 

‘Fabulous new book about the history, and the rise and fall of the ‘Grey Topper’ music venue in Jacksdale, a pit village in Nottinghamshire. Includes loads of U.K. Subs content, from quotes by Charlie, Nicky and Pete Davies about gigs in 1979, to an account of organizing a Subs gig in 2007. Highly recommended. Great stuff Tony.’

Official UK Subs web pages

It was as likely as finding a diamond in your dustbin. There it was in the heart of a scruffy, coal-scarred mining village whose narrow, terraced streets had no-nonsense names like Edward and Albert. Inside an old converted cinema, beneath a nicotine-stained ceiling, a local entrepreneur named Alf Hyslop opened a music venue called the Grey Topper. Somehow this nondescript, unvarnished venue managed to become part of music history. Tony Hill's book is a must-read for any muso who boogied, rocked or pogo-ed at anytime from '69 to '81.' See the full review here 

Nottingham Evening Post 

A very good and interesting perspective of those times.’

Andy Scott, Sweet  

You can see the sweat dripping off the ceiling, sense the globule of spit skimming past your cheek, feel the poke in the eye of a spiky mohican or hear the rattling of bondage  straps on pogoing punks. Tony Hill's book paints such a vivid picture of the Grey Topper that you're in there, sharing the hopes of the bands on the threshold of stardom or the despair of those on their way down. A compelling read.' See the full feature and review here 

Derbyshire Times 

Endlessly gobsmacking...piss yourself music books? Buy this.’ Download the pdf version of Nottingham's brilliant culture magazine featuring the review here

Left Lion magazine  

Highly recommended, very entertaining.’

Pete Davies, drummer UK Subs 


'A great little piece of highly personal, social history of which we should see more. I would recommend it very highly to anyone with a passing interest in the history of the late '70's UK punk scene.' Full review here

Aural Sculptors - The Stranglers Live:


The book contains original interviews with and the memories of – The Members (‘Sound of the Suburbs’), Andy Scott and Steve Priest of glam kings Sweet, Chris Fenwick manager of Dr Feelgood (who played their first gig outside of London at the Topper when called The Pig Boy Charlie Band as featured in Sex Pistol film maker Julien Temple's Oil City Confidential), Jet Black who talks about The Stranglers as an unsigned band in 1976 (using his ice cream van as a tour bus) punk and the Pistols, Roddy Radiation of The Specials, the UK Subs, Depeche Mode’s Alan Wilder, Eddie from punk originals The Vibrators describing being there at one of the most famous moments in rock history – the Sex Pistols debut gig at St Martins college of art in 1975! The legendary punk rock festival at the 100 Club and the Topper of course. Plus loads more first hand Topper tales.

There’s also a Grey Topper A-Z, listing all the bands that appeared at the Grey Topper, the dates, info about groups/singers and what happened to them.

‘This is an absolutely essential purchase for any true fan of the U.K. Subs’ 

Brilliant features on the book on U.K. Subs and official Stranglers websites 

 Now on Amazom,  Waterstones, W.H. Smiths and all major book sites

 News - The Palace and the Punks is now available as an Amazon Kindle

 ebook (also viewable on your PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, BlackBerry and and

 Android-based devices some mobiles via free Kindle apps)

 Only £1.53! 

The Palace and the Punks on the blog of Depeche Mode's Alan Wilder with an extract from the book

Interview with Tony about The Palace and the Punks in Hound Dawg magazine

New! Grey Topper Facebook group.

Pictures and Tour Posters

Latest News!


*Background picture of Strife on stage at the Grey Topper by Colin Rowe






Tony Hill is the author of the acclaimed book


Four Four Two

Total Football

Available as an Ebook (Amazon Kindle and other formats) from spring 2011