Billy Gibbons - the rockabilly and 1950s enthusiast from Audlem
PUBLISHED: 18:44 13 March 2013 | UPDATED: 21:09 05 April 2013
It may be 2013 but a rockabilly enthusiast from Audlem chooses to live in a timewarp
It was an unorthodox welcome from Billy Gibbons.
Youre entering a timewarp when you step into this house. Youre welcome to a biscuit but theyre from 1959 and the milks probably older than that.
But the rockabilly and 1950s enthusiast from Audlem, I came to discover, lives in another era. Outside his door the 21st century continues apace but once inside his pretty cottage you discover another world.
Every room is decorated just how a 1950s home would have been. Other than a few modern concessions a computer and a mobile phone - Billys home is entirely furnished with furniture from this era. Items include a Cossor wireless and a Tesla Talisman radio as well as an original Bakelite TV. There is even a 1956 calendar hanging in the kitchen. The house has also been used by photographers for 50s style pin-up photo shoots and Billy was filmed for a documentary shown at the National Film Theatre in London.
He said: It was a Brazilian director who spent three years filming me. I turned up to the premiere on the South Bank in London in the rocket. I thought people in London had seen it all. It seemed not.
I just love everything about the 1950s. Whats not to love about it? It was a fantastic time.
Billys love affair with the fifties started when he discovered rock and roll as a nine-year-old. He heard Elvis Presleys Hound Dog playing on Blue Peter and he was hooked. He hit his teens and became a Teddy Boy and later bought his first rockabilly record. He now dresses in rockabilly clothes collected over the years.
He said: After I found out about American music, clothes and cars that was it, I was hooked and have been until this day. Im still a rockabilly and I love the good time, foot tapping music.
I love all of the music that wasnt in the charts so much and I have played in rockabilly bands myself. That entire era is so special to me.
He also loves space and space travel. One of his favourite toys as a child was a Dan Dare Space Control radio station, something he still cherishes today.
I still remember the thrill of tearing open the Christmas wrapping paper to reveal the treasure inside. On the box is written the proud boast Sends and receives voice and code up to half a mile.
I found out that not to be quite correct, in my case. It struggled to reach from the living room to the kitchen after my Granny tripped over the thing and ripped one of its vital space age wires out. It still looked great though.
Billy has earned recognition in the village. He is often seen collecting his groceries in his authentic 1950s space rocket car. He has used the vehicle in local carnivals and parades and attracted quite a crowd. He also once had a model of a flying saucer in his back garden.
He said: I think my lifestyle is fairly normal to be honest, however other people have differing opinions. Mind you, I dont suppose there are too many people in Cheshire who use a 1950s space rocket to pick up their groceries.
But when I bought it I knew I couldnt just leave it in the garage. I had to use it. I take on the guise of Professor Atom when I use it. Its great fun.
One room of Billys home is dedicated to his memorabilia he calls it his museum and in the back garden youll discover an American ranch along with 13 sheds and garages stuffed with treasured items.
In one of them is his very own hot rod. He has owned the 1950s-style Ford V8 Deuce Coupe for 20 years and despite selling it three times, he has been unable to live without it and bought it back.
Billy, is now writing his autobiography: I love the hot rod, it is such a fantastic car. I reckon its meant to be with me forever. I dont use it too much as it has a rather thirsty V8 engine and Im struggling to find a garage that sells petrol at 1950s prices.
Ive always been interested in space related stuff. Whod have thought that 40 years later Id own my own space rocket, never mind driving through the village in it? I dont think the residents expected it. They were shocked, in disbelief and amazed.
Grow up, me? No, I dont think so. You might have to grow old but you dont have to grow up.