Brighton icon, Pete Turner or Disco Pete, as he is affectionately called, celebrated his 85th birthday yesterday in the nursing home where he permanently resides.
Pete suffers with dementia and is wheelchair-bound , but in spite of this, spent the afternoon surrounded by staff and fellow patients in the common room listening to music.
He was also presented with a birthday cake and later enjoyed a video call with his daughter (who asked not to be named), who was unable to visit due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Speaking exclusively to Gscene, she revealed, “If it wasn’t for Covid, depending on how he was feeling we would’ve been out celebrating – previous birthdays were fun and interesting, gone are those days.”
She added, “As you can tell he loved dancing, he has danced all of my life and more.
“Back in the 70s, 80s and 90s he danced every night of our holidays, he often wore a Michael Jackson mask while he danced (we are BIG fans of his).
“He entered dance and talent competitions back then, often winning holidays.”
Disco Pete was a regular attendee at any music event across the city, from Pride to The Children’s Parade, always found somewhere in the crowd, dressed in brightly coloured attire and white gloves, showing off his signature dance moves.
In a 2016 interview with Huffington Post, when asked what dancing meant to him, he said, “Age is immaterial, if you have a talent or hobby, use it – make the most of it, try and inspire others.
“I love it when little lads copy all my moves.
“When I’m dancing I’m in a world of my own, dancing takes you away from life, it’s great for overcoming physical or mental problems. It has excellent health values.”
Last year, an exhibition was opened to celebrate the life, secret art work and poety of the dancing legend.
It was curated and designed by Phillip Sugg and Amanda Rosenstein with Disco Pete attending the opening night.
Although his dancing days are firmly behind him, Disco Pete will always be remembered for his exhuberance and unwillingness to submit to old age, an inspiration to us all – we at Gscene join the whole of the city in wishing him a very happy birthday.