South Benfleet Junior School
Southend High School For Boys
Les took up the guitar when he was seven after having been introduced to the ukulele banjo by his older brother Bob when he was six.
His first band was called “The Ambassadors” - this was a gospel group that he joined, aged 12, at South Benfleet Baptist Church.
Having done one “normal” job working for the Post Office as a clerical officer, Les turned professional in 1973.
He spent most of his working life teaching children to sing, play the guitar and other instruments such as keyboard and drums.
Les recorded his first album with the band Thomahawk in 1975.
From 1992 - 1995 he was assistant director of Choirwood, a choir for children based in South Woodham Ferrers, Essex. His children were both members of this choir which appeared many times on the London stage in the show “Joseph And His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat" with Phillip Schofield and Jason Donovan.
From 1996 - 2011 he co-directed (along with his son Steve) the award winning children’s rock and pop choir Kids Choir 2000. This choir recorded several albums and performed at countless concerts in South East Essex as well as undertaking a short tour of Germany in 2001.
Les has written many songs for children and grown-ups plus several musicals including “Lily’s Big Adventure” (1992) “Prince Allegro And The One-Note Song” (with Steve Titford and Jenny Titford) (2006) and “Having Fun At Christmas (2015).
Les has many radio and TV appearances under his belt and has featured on loads of other people’s recordings over the years.
In 2009, Les, having concentrated on all forms of the six-string guitar for most of his career, decided to try as many different instruments as he could lay his hands on. These included the pedal steel guitar, mandolin, banjo, tenor guitar, cigar box guitar, mountain dulcimer, melodeon, concertina, chromatic button accordion, harp, harmonica, kalimba, ukulele, mandola, dulcister and saz.
Needless to say, some fell by the wayside while others stuck. These instruments have given Les’s musical experience a whole new dimension and he continues to persevere with the steep learning curve that some of them presented him.
Les has two sons, Steve and Dave, who are both excellent musicians. Steve currently lives in Fuerteventura, Canary Islands, where he plays in a club in the evening and writes children’s musicals during the day. His musical “Shakespeare Rocks” (2013) has been enormously successful all over the world and "Darwin Rocks", released in 2017, is also doing very well. Dave, who also lives in Fuerteventura, is currently concentrating on classical piano and is a website designer. He also teaches Spanish children to speak English.
Les lives in Essex, UK with his wife Jenny, Pip the Irish Terrier and Susie the cat.