Howlingtoad Productions

Les was born and attended school in Croydon where his choirmaster started his love of singing. He joined the Royal Navy at the age of 15 and attended a Naval College, this may explain his writing songs of the sea and ships.


After a short period in the Marines he was invalided out and became a diving instructor on Corfu and then in the south of France. Those who know Les know of his keen interest in diving and on his return to the UK he ran dive shops in the West End of London. He also played bass guitar in  a pop group in his spare time.


For many years Les lived on a boat called Mingulay and this was to give him the idea for the name of his first album, "Echoes of Mingulay". When he married Carys in 2002 he moved to Hertfordshire to a house called Lowlands, hence the name for the second album "Echoes of Lowlands" but he now says he lives "too far from the sea". His third album "Echoes of Terada" is named after the place in Japan where his favourite guitars are made. He has four of them.


Les appears at many festivals in all parts of the UK and is very proud of the fact that he has never failed to be re-booked. Much to his surprise his songs have enjoyed success nationally and internationally being sung as far away as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, USA and several European countries. They have also been translated into several foreign languages.


Originally writing for the UK folk scene he now writes for many genres including theatre, video and the internet.


A highlight of his career was appearing in concert with Eric Bogle at the James Theatre in Watford on 27th June 2009 (The "Last Ever UK" Tour) as it was also Les' 60th birthday.


2015 has been a very busy year with a return to Shanty UK festival held at the Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port over Easter, an event he is looking forward to again in 2016. Another booking he is looking forward to is a return to Fleetwood Folk Club in March and a chance to catch up with old friends. Crediton Folk Festival is going to be held in May next year so with a booking at our local Stortfolk and a new festival (to him) The Folk Gathering he is getting quite busy.