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Bachelors Show
First of all we would like to wish everyone a HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020, can you believe its 20 years since the millennium. In 2019 we had been doing a series of farewell shows and people have been asking is it really the end of THE BACHELORS with John Stokes or THE BACHELORS SHOW as we are sometimes billed? Well the answer is, John, Dave and I have after 25 years together realized that the traveling is getting too much for us and whilst the shows have been going really well we feel we can no longer make ourselves available without knowing the traveling involved. For example we have just turned down a farewell tour of Australia and while we thank Richard Browne for his offer we have had to decline it. Having said that we will still consider offers of cruises and some local dates so don’t hesitate to contact us with a suitable offer.
Since our web site will be kept only as a record of our 25 years together I would like to thank the people who helped those years the success they were and I know that what I am writing will echo the thoughts of John Stokes, Dave Pearson and of course the late great Kevin Neil.

When John and Kevin first asked me to join up with them I thought it was for one little tour, I could never have imagined what it would lead to and how it would take up nearly a quarter of a century of our lives.
There are so many people we have to thank for the faith they showed in us that it’s hard to know where to begin but top of the list has to be the late Duggie Chapman and Beryl Jonston for among other things all those seasons at The North Pier Theatre, Blackpool, one of them lasting 24 weeks, can you believe that? Then we had Geoff Jones who took us to Australia seven times, the first time only on the recommendation of comedian Noel Talbot who saw us perform in Wales. If we could call a country our second home, it would be Australia. We will always treasure our memories of our time there and the people who we will always regard as friends.  The seven appearances on National Television were very memorable, namely THE BERT NEWTON SHOW, GOOD MORNING AUSTRALIA and THE CAROL ANN SHOW. Plus we will always be grateful to ARTHUR LANG who had so much faith in us that he released a trilogy of our albums on his label and had them in every store in the country, selling extremely well.

Bachelors ShowThen we had the Cruises, too numerous to mention but not the people who booked us. Thank you Dave Arnold for P&O all those fantastic ships, Christine Butler for Page & Moy, great times on the Ocean Majesty, Gerry Flynn for those lovely Irish holidays on land and sea and lastly Chris Gidney for our most recent ones with Cruise & Maritime.

Our gratitude goes out to the staff and management of all those lovely theatres all over the country we had the pleasure of appearing in and the agents and promoters who booked us. Brian Goddard, Brian Walker, a lovely man who just recently passed away , Derek Grant, Peggy Jones, Andy Eastwood, Mark Andrews, Jeff Kemp and of course Vincent Hayes the proprietor of “Brick Lane Music Hall” which was like our second home. The list is endless.

Another list that would be endless is the number of excellent musicians we had the pleasure of working with and If I attempted to name them I would surely leave someone out, so we would just like to say thank you one and all.

In our time together we made eight albums and a big thank you all the people who bought them. Renaissance, Outstanding in their own field, The Irish Collection, A Taste of The Bachelors, Our Favourite Number Ones, Making Memories, The Bachelors Show and our latest one My Heart will go on.  John’s favourite is “Renaissance”, Dave’s is “The Bachelors Show” and mine is” My Heart will go on”. John, Dave and I went through all our CD’s and picked out tracks that we were most proud of and put them on one CD. I think it is a fitting farewell album

The last people we would like to thank are you the fans or perhaps a more appropriate word would be friends, because over the years that’s what you became.

So to all the people who took the time to attend our shows on the cruise ships, Australia, the Far East, your local theatre or the working men’s club round the corner we say thank you
John and I will have been together 25 years, actually longer than his time with the original line up and if anyone would care to look back through the web site our achievements are well documented thanks to Laurence Payne who has taken my thoughts and made a sensible presentation out of them.

As they say “Never say never “so don’t be surprised if we get together for the occasional cruise or a show for a local charity because you can’t keep a good band down.


0161 681 9444

Hi Everyone

The date is now the 15th of November 2020 so I would like to take you back to the beginning of the year when I said that we would still be available for cruises and a few individual venues as opposed to exhausting tours.

Well who could have foreseen Coved 19 and its devastating effect on all of our lives. Bad enough that some of us lost our loved ones but the sorrow was compounded by the fact that a lot of family and friends could not even attend their funerals.

This year has taken a heavy toll on show business personalities some of which were known to us personally and will be sorely missed.

EDDIE LARGE, BOBBY BALL, DERREK QUINN, (The Dreamers), WAYNE FONTANA and just today DES OCONNOR, to name but a few.

On the other hand I am Happy to say John, Dave and I are fine (touch wood) and hopefully you are all finding ways to get through this awful time and maybe with the help of these new vaccine discoveries we can look forward to a great 2021

On a personal note I myself have used the lock ins to write a book. It’s called “KEY TO YESTERDAY” and can be purchased direct from Amazon or if you would like a signed copy just email me at and I will put one in the post.

So from JOHN STOKES, DAVE PEARSON and myself JONATHAN YOUNG please look after yourselves and above all STAY SAFE.

Book cover



I started to write this book as I was flying to New York to watch the Republic of Ireland in the world cup in 1994. I had written the teams song “Thank you Jack” as a tribute to their then manager the late Jack Charlton, I had a sister Ann who lived there so I wasn’t going to let the fact that I was from Northern Ireland stop me. I had written plenty of songs so I thought how hard can it be to write a book?

Having worked on cruise ships I was lucky enough to meet Authors who had come to do lectures and all their advice was the same.


Hence my main Character Sean Clarke is a Singer/Actor who was born in Belfast and who now lives in Manchester, just like me.

There the similarity ends and my imagination takes over. He is a person who tells himself that he has made mistakes but he has done his best, still like the rest of us if we had done our best we wouldn’t have made so many mistakes and Sean made plenty. It’s a story of how extraordinary experiences can intertwine into ordinary lives and believe it or not to say anymore would spoil the story which, I hope you are about to read.

I had more or less written the story with Sean telling it to the reader but I still didn’t feel there was enough to make a novel so I took it to my friend and neighbor next door Dennis Houghton.
Unlike me Dennis had already written two or three books so I was not surprised with what he came back with. He had added a few more characters plus a few sub plots and together we finished the book in 2005.
After hearing nothing concrete from publishers I did some rewrites and had a new version by 2008 but still nothing favorable from publishers so back it went on the shelf.

Then came the Corona virus and the lockdown of 2020 which is when I really went to work on the book listening to suggestions from friends and developing the characters to make them more believable and real. I would especially like to thank my wife Margaret for her patience during the 26 years it took to finish this book. Lastly I would like to thank my granddaughter Megan Clarke who did most of the editing and proof reading not to mention designing the cover of “Key to yesterday” the book I hope you are going to buy.

Jonathan Young.

Quote. “I thought it was an intriguing story with some engaging characters”
(ANNA DAVIS. Script Executive at I.T.V.)

Here are some of the quotes from people who have read this book, starting with HANNAH KATE from the radio programme “Bookshelf”. To hear the review in its entirety go to the North Manchester FM website and look up Hannah Kate and the date of the show which was 06/03/2021

“The first thing you notice about this novel is the absence of a blur on the cover telling you what it’s all about. This is a deliberate, even bold attempt by the Authors to ensure that the reader begins their book with NO misconceptions. Key to yesterday does require patience from the reader as Sean slowly unfolds his story. Every tale leads to the next one until the dramatic set piece which I absolutely will not spoil.”

What I really enjoyed about the North Manchester setting is that it isn’t a book that’s ringing its hands about North Manchester’s problems. In fact it doesn’t mention a single word about the negative stereotypes of our bit of the city that we hear all the time. I actually can’t recall another book that does that. The Authors show Manchester in such a matter of fact way and use the city as a back drop to their story which I found refreshing”

Above all it has an affectionate sense of local identity that I really enjoyed and hey! You don’t have to know all the ins and outs of traffic jams on Oldham Road to enjoy it. Key to yesterday is a curious tale that I would recommend especially, to any one from North Manchester and dare I say readers of a certain age.”

“Lastly, all credit to the Authors for sticking with their story for 26 years and getting it out there.”

A quote from DAVID LODGE. Author of “The long road”, “Chapel of Dreams”, “Crane” and “Have Gravel Will Travel” (Singer TOMMY BRUCES’S Biography).
"I have long admired Jonathan Young for his vocal and acting talents especially his work with “John Stokes BACHELORS” and now I know him to be a very good writer as well. “KEY TO YESTERDAY” is a superb book. The story is well conceived and unlike most of what is written by today’s authors it has a beginning, a middle and an ending. Reading the book was a breathless experience, I just couldn’t put it down I had to know what happened next. Great stuff and with the right promotion a best seller.

STEVE COOKE reporter with The Heywood and Middleton Guardian. ( (
“A book I can highly recommend is “Key to yesterday by Jonathan Young and Dennis Houghton. The pair are keen not to give anything away that would diminish the experience of reading this wonderful novel. As they say: “We have decided not to give a synopsis as to do so would have the reader using the clues to pre-empt the story instead of just letting it unfold. A wise decision! On reading “Key to yesterday” you are quickly transported into the lives of lead character Sean Clarke and an array of fascinating people he meets, taking on a rollercoaster ride of twists and suspense.”

JOHN WILSON: Drummer with Pop groups The Misfits, Them, Taste and session percussionist on The Jive Bunny records.
“A GREAT BOOK. A super story, I couldn’t put it down, I read it in one sitting. I’m looking forward to the next one. EXCELLENT!”

DR CLARE BECKETT- MCLNROY EdD MAEd MCC.  Bahrain.“A FANTASTIC TRIP INTO MEMORY LANE” This is a really unique book that is written in such a way that you are transported into the lives of all the characters. Sean Clarke is the lead, yet the book is full of the many people he meets – all interesting in their own way. Grab a drink, find a comfortable chair, and you won’t notice the hours fly by as you are engrossed in the curious and compelling storyline. I RECOMMEND THIS BOOK UNRESERVEDLY.”

This book has 100% favourable reviews from people who bought it on AMAZON here are just a few of them.

VANESSA WILLIAMS (Landlady of the Strawberry Duck, Manchester,) “JUST ONE OF THEM BOOKS YOU CANT OUT DOWN” After a couple of chapters the main character Sean Clarke feels like a familiar friend. I loved the places it takes you to and all the Rum characters that you meet in the pubs and clubs. Key to Yesterday has a bit of everything, mystery, moodiness, romance plus great comedy and in parts quite dark and melancholic. I simply couldn’t put it down.”

SIOBHAN RICHARDSON. This book is a great read! I couldn’t put it down! You won’t be disappointed.”

JACQUI DALE. “Great read, humorous in places, serious in others, couldn’t put it down.”

MR V. WATCHORN. “You keep wanting to turn the page to find out what happens next”

KATE  “ I found that I read a lot faster than I have been reading books recently, because it is such an intriguing story and I really wanted to find out what happened to all the characters. Every time I put it down I kept picking it up again straight away. I am now reading it for the second time.”

MEG. “Really loved this book. Different from anything I have ever read, and absolutely worth a read”.

KINDLE CUSTOMER (yes, it is on Kindle) “It held my attention until the very last page”

This last Review is by WALTER RHEIN. Walter is an American Author who has written many books himself. I always wondered if “Key to Yesterday” which is mainly set in Manchester, England would have broader appeal. Walter obviously thinks so. He has his own site which is

Walter Rhein 1
Walter Rhein 2Walter Rhein 3



making memories

Click on selected tracks for audio samples
Making Memories

I Believe
No Arms Can Ever Hold You
I Wouldn't Trade You For The World
Love Me With All Your Heart
Hello Dolly
The Sound Of Silence
The Unicom
In The Chapel In The Moonlight
Answer Me
My Heart Will Go On
Danny Boy
If Tomorrow Never Comes
Faraway Places
You're My World
The Fields Of Athenry
So Deep Is The Night
Walk With Faith In Your Heart
Climb Every Mountain