' everything that occurcd beyond the M25?

This is Peter York's 80s, which he shared with a tiny minority of media people, property whizz kids ' and City witch doctors. for whom the decade offered I marvellous opportunities. As York says in the introduction to his book, many people he talked to were privately sony the 80s were over, but felt it politically incorrect to say so.

The series kicks off with a marvellous notion of the ‘plotters and poseurs' as the midwives ofthe 80s. The plotters populated the burgeoning number of right-wing think tanks, such as the Adam Smith Institute, who provided the theoretical backbone of Thatcher's divisive political hunch; while the poseurs were the New Romantics, those unashamed working class individualists, who flounced out of the punk party to plunder the dressing-up box. The new right and the new money found their spiritual home in


The decadent decade

Seasoned style-watcher Peter York kicks off 1996 with a witty and entertaining look back at the consumerist 805 with an unashamed London bias, says Eddie Gibb.

Like most decades, the 80s didn't begin on time. In fact it started early with the election of the first

‘A bunch of dandified metropolitan

misfits were setting an egotistical

style-consciousness which was to last well after the first phase of New Romantic had faded through

Thaw"? adm‘msmf‘w" '" '979' ‘".‘d “Mg by "‘8 Peter York: the New Avenger of so: style Miss selmdge' tips of its well-manicured nails until a few months into the 90s, when the property market crash signalled the end of that acquisative, credit-fuelled thought it hilarious, while the rest of the country, Essex, that quintessential 80s county. era. During the late 70s, Peter York had set himself who knew little about the mores of west London and While the plotters were fixing it politically, the up as that most 80s of creatures, the management cared less. looked on in bemusement. poseurs were putting on their faces and forming consultant, so the dawn of the new decade must have That‘s the problem - and possibly the strength of bands like Spandau Ballet. ‘A bunch of dandified been like a coming home party. Peter York is Eighties, a matching twin-set of book metropolitan misfits were setting an egotistical style-

York landed himself a job as style editor of society and television series which chronicles the rise and consciousness which was to last well after the first comic Harper's & Queen, a position which enabled fall of Thatcher's decade. York is gloriously and phase of New Romantic had faded through Miss him to jump to the queue at all the best clubs and unashamedly metropolitan, at a time when the BBC Selfridge,‘ writes York. When this style parties. And as an observer rather than participant, he is paying lip-service to regionalism in its every consciousness met money it turned into a hankering wasn‘t required to dress in the absurdist costumes of pronouncement. in the book. just about the only for retro chromium toasters and ultm-matt black those post-punk fashion victims, the New Romantics. mention ofa place outside London is Manchester‘s Braun shavers and Next suits. Peter York is Eighties Instead he squired about the fashionable watering Whalley Range. an example of an area even the most details every stylistic nuance and every brand name homes of Covent Garden and Sloane Square looking creative estate agent would have been pushed to that mattered with a wit as sharp as the creases in his like Steed from The New Avengers, soaking up the describe as ‘up and coming'. Presumably York was Saville Row suit. But like the decade he describes, its details which were relayed in his monthly column. unable to conceive ofa part of London so utterly a triumph of style over content. York's book The Official Sloane Ranger's Handbook, beyond the reach of the economic miracle. But after Peter York Is Eighties starts on Sat 6 Jan on BBC2. published in I982, became an instant hit amongst the all, the north-south divide was invented during the The acemnpanying book of the same name is sort of people it was satirising. The urban tweedies 80s, so what better way of illustrating it than ignoring I published by BBC Books. out now.

unmistakably the unique strength of Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra. music as an ambassador for peace in Bartok. a Hungarian compatriot of

our time,’ his 81 -strong orchestra was Solti who was forced to leave his handpicked from the world’s finest beloved homeland, died in exile in the players, representing 45 orchestras same year that the United ilatlons was and all five continents. ‘i grew up in founded. Finally, with london Voicea war and revolution, both Fascist and and an assortment of soloists, there is Communist,’ he says, ‘and this taught the closing scene of Beethoven’s

me to believe passionately In peace. Fidel/0. ‘III which’ 8313 30m “"10 When we started to plan this concert, I prisoners of conflict are given their

W Peace movements

In Geneva last July, legendary conductor Sir Georg Solti put together

an orchestral ‘supergroup’ who played wanted to prove that players from freedom and hope for the future.’ a concert for world peace to mark the more than 40 nations com com Clearly personally impressed with his United Nation’s 50th anniversary. Solti rngnum In on; orchestra: assembled torces, Soiti says: ‘We have has long been associated with the flamfloln for urn concur was worked together in such harmony and intematlonal peace movement through chosen specially to m In with the they play so beautifully that I think we his work with Maoa - Musicians oven" than. or peace through music, have proved quite brilliantly our belief ml.“ “BIOS! Arms. NOW IIIIS Openan with flosslni’s popular in 90808 - I WISII our politicians IOTI remarkable concert can be seen over overture to William Tellin homage to and right could do the sarne.’ (Carol New Year on Salt] Conducts: The _ urn ham or tn. host country Main) World Orchestra tor Peace. -. - - ‘\ Switzerland, the orchestra then gives Salt] Condrrcts: The orchestra tor ‘Forned,’ says Soltl, ‘to dernonshate acorn Soltl: conducting tor world peace an unrnrgnmm. performaan or Peace Is on New Year’s Day on once.

“The List l5 Dec 1995-” Jan I996