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The story started in 1971, when two college friends, Martin Mills and Nick Austin, began running a mobile discotheque. Initially called Giant Elf, they joined forces with another mobile disco called Beggar’s Banquet and, through a series of mishaps, inherited the name. In 1973, Beggar’s Banquet became their very own record exchange in Earl’s Court, but they continued promoting events on the side, including some adventurous gigs such as Tangerine Dream at the Royal Albert Hall. Without bank loans – not even an overdraft, just a habit of operating within their means and reinvesting profits into small businesses – Mills and Austin opened a total of five more record shops over the subsequent decade, in Fulham, Ealing High Street, Richmond, Putney and Kingston.


30 Mar 2024 at 04:36
I have a picture of me from late March/early April 1980 taken outside a Beggars Banquet shop in London. Genesis’ Duke album is prominently on display in the shop window. I can’t identify which BB shop it is. It doesn’t match any of the pictures I’ve found online and I can’t find a list of BB shop addresses, otherwise I'd look on Google Street view. I will submit the photo if you tell me how.
20 Jun 2024 at 01:22
I would really like to find a picture of the Putney store. This is where I bought most of my music in the 1990s so the nostalgia is big. I still have several of the "BB" plastic bags.