Lifting the lid on 1980s Coventry

by Neil Anderson in Coventry, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 29th September 2018 we successfully raised £180 with 9 supporters in 28 days

We want to publish a book on 1980s Coventry - an era of creativity and music set against a backdrop of protest and industrial decline.

by Neil Anderson in Coventry, England, United Kingdom

The project:

We’re publishing a book that celebrates a unique period in Coventry’s music and leisure time history as we count down to the city being City of Culture in 2021.

The 1980s was a decade that shaped entire lives and nurtured acts that went on to conquer the world.


It might have a been a time of industrial decline, the height of the Cold War and mass unemployment but Coventry’s unstoppable creativity actually cranked up a few gears!


2 Tone was the driving force in the first part of the 1980s with the Special’s ‘Ghost Town’ – a gloomy outlook if ever there was one - spending three weeks at number one in 1981.

The likes of Hazel O’Conner, King and The Primitives also enjoyed commercial success and added to the success of the city’s 2 Tone movement.


And who could forget the euphoria of Coventry winning the FA Cup in May 1987 – something that united the city like never before?

The 'Dirty Stop Out’s Guide to 1980s Coventry' book is set to celebrate the era like never before.

It will remember the numerous venues, the musicians, the fans, the punters and bring the era back to life like never before. 

The author:

Celebrated Coventry kid and historian Ruth Cherrington is heading up the project and it follows in the wake of her local best seller – the 'Dirty Stop Out’s Guide to 1970s Coventry' which was released to critical acclaim in autumn 2017. 


Ruth loves writing about her home-town’s great, but often unsung history and characters. She’s on a mission to celebrate the people who contributed not just to the city’s night (and day!) life but to music and culture across the country - the world in fact!

The 'Dirty Stop Out’s Guide to 1980s Coventry' will contain new interviews with those at the cutting edge of music creativity, the fans and the venue owners together with never seen before photos, rare memorabilia and more.

Our track record:

Dirty Stop Outs Ltd is a company passionate about celebrating the country’s rich and unique, nightlife culture.

We create experiences that take people on a journey – back to a time when music, fashion and dancefloors were the most important thing in their life.

Our books can take months – even years – to come to fruition. That's because they're only ever published when we believe we've created something that's truly representational of a period or scene.

We're truly blessed in the fact people love our books. In fact our first title - the 'Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1970s Sheffield' - had that much love it even persuaded a couple to get re-married after 26 years apart!

We've also been fantastically received by the media:


The launch:

We're planning to launch the book in autumn this year. The first copies will be available to buy through this crowdfunder campaign.

We'll be selling through, Amazon and retail outlets like Waterstones and HMV.

Why are we crowdfunding?

Our books are packed with hundreds of interviews, photos, visuals and more. The process of gathering this information is a massive piece of work. The very nature of our books means it can be anything up to two years before they start bringing any return on the investment.

And the research is only the start of it. The books then need proof reading, designing, laying out and printing.

It’s only at that point that they finally get into the shops. And even when they finally start selling - it can take up to three months to get paid by retailers.

So crowdfunding is a potential game changer for us. It allows us to encourage supporters to purchase our products – and help us fund the first print run – before they’re published. We can sell editions that you'll never find in the shops.

In addition, it seems the perfect way to encourage people to have more of a stake in what we do and help us to grow a community of like minded retro party people that should probably know better.

Any profit is being ploughed straight back into the company as we recruit writers in new cities, develop new products and more.

We're thankful for every pledge - no matter how big or small - and every social media share. It truly means the world to us.

Our figure of £1,200 will allow us to design and print the first run of the Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1980s Coventry book and create a legacy to a truly inspirational period. If we're lucky enough to exceed that amount we'll be investing in other aspects of the business - a key area will be researching new products


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£15 or more

4 of 100 claimed

Individually numbered, signed copy of book

We are making 100 individually numbered, signed copies of the brand new 'Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1980s Coventry' available. Packed full of rare photos and interviews - this is set to be a collector's item in future years. Includes complimentary postage within the UK.

£15 or more

Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1970s Coventry - signed

We have just 50 signed copies of last year's 'Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1970s Coventry' available - these are the final few from the first print run. Packed full of rare photos and interviews - these are set to be a collector's item in future years. Includes complimentary postage within the UK.

£20 or more

1 of 100 claimed

Exclusive FA Cup win edition of the book

No one can ever forget the city-wide jubilation when Coventry City brought the FA Cup home. We're producing 100 copies of the 'Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1980s Coventry' with an exclusive cover to celebrate the historic day. Includes complimentary postage within the UK. Each book is signed by the author and numbered.

£20 or more

5 of 100 claimed

Exclusive 'Ghost Town' edition of the book

We're producing 100 copies of the 'Dirty Stop Out's Guide to 1980s Coventry' with an exclusive cover to celebrate The Specials' soundtrack that became an anthem for a generation. This was the Coventry band's last single, spent three weeks at number one and showed just how far the city's 2 Tone sound had become. Includes complimentary postage within the UK. Each book is signed by the author and individually numbered.

Got an idea like this?

Our crowd has raised over £70 million for bright ideas and good causes.