Naked Dancer

The following front page article appeared under the headline The Naked Dancer of Combe Down in The Bath Evening Chronicle on September 22, 1971.

(Coincidentally, Andrew happened to be touring in Bath at the time.)

Who was the naked blonde man who danced the maypole round a Belisha beacon in Combe Down at seven o’clock on Sunday morning?

The police, who took him to headquarters in the back of a patrol car, know his name. But they aren’t saying.

A local licensee, his wife and daughter ­ all watched the man’s antics a few yards from their public house. They are convinced they know who it was.

A young housewife says she, too, watched the early morning naked dance. And she too thought it was the same fellow.

But the man they named is adamant that it was all a case of mistaken identity. “Someone must have made a mistake,” he said. “They are confusing me with someone else.”

Ken Brunton, former consultant architect and now licensee of the Hadley Arms, says, “We were woken up by this terrific row of a man shouting things like “Read all about it”, and “Come out and join us” outside.”

“We went to the window outside and there was this stark naked man on the crossroads outside dancing around as happy as Larry. I recognised him straight away.”

Mr Brunton’s wife, Goldie, and his 18-year-old daughter, Anne, also saw the incident. Mrs Brunton telephoned the police but before they came the man went into a telephone box.

“He leaned back in the box and made an exaggerated show of dialling 999. The police arrived just afterwards and he was taken away.”

Housewife, Mrs Ann Ruddick, who lives in Bradford Road, went to her bedroom window when she heard shouting.

Mrs Ruddick, 26, said, “He was naked and dancing up the middle of the road.” One of her neighbours said, “I saw this chap tearing around the place with no clothes on. He danced the maypole around a Belisha beacon and then went out of sight.”

He did not recognise the man. A Bath spokesman confirmed that the incident had taken place and added, “A policeman went to Combe Down at 7.10 on Sunday morning. A man was taken to Bath police station and later left. No charges are being preferred.”