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I Was At Diana Dors’ Sex Parties: Max Clifford, Bob Monkhouse’s ‘Slit Eyeballs’ And The Krays

By on 27 March 2014 | comments 0

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DIANA Dors is in the news. When the tittering had died down in court, Max Clifford told the jury in his sex crimes trial that he attended “sex parties” hosted by the actress Diana Dors. Mr Clifford denies 11 counts of indecent assault against seven women and girls.

Dors was one of the country’s biggest stars. Dors was billed as Britain’s Marilyn Monroe.

Her real name was Diana Fluck – but her mother said she should change it because there was always the chance that her name would be up in lights outside a cinema – and one of the letters might fall off.

 

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And she had hosted sex parties at her Orchard Manor home in Sunningdale, Berkshire.

* It really is terrifying how gullible and naïve I was and still am,” she ­confessed to author Clive Hirschhorn in 1968. “I fell for hard-luck stories the way boys fall for girls. To make things worse I surrounded myself with ­gangsters, conmen and phoneys!”

 

Actress Diana Dors, in her early twenties, during the filming of "Value For Money" in 1955.

Actress Diana Dors, in her early twenties, during the filming of “Value For Money” in 1955.

 

 

She had a turbulent love life.

 

19 year old film actress Diana Dors and her new husband Dennis Hamilton, 26 year old representative of an engineering firm, leaving Caxton Hall register office after their wedding. Ref #: PA.5224735  Date: 03/07/1951

19 year old film actress Diana Dors and her new husband Dennis Hamilton, 26 year old representative of an engineering firm, leaving Caxton Hall register office after their wedding. Date: 03/07/1951

 

Rob Baker takes up the story.

She married her first husband, Dennis Hamilton, at 4.pm 3rd July 1951 at Caxton Hall registry office in Westminster. She was just nineteen and already a film star. Her parents, not over-enamoured with the proposed union, decided not to come, and Diana, who was still under the, then, legal age of 21, had to forge their signatures on the form that gave permission for their daughter to be married.

 

Film star Diana Dors, who has filed a divorce petition against her husband, Dennis Hamilton, pictured with actor Tommy Yeardye before they left London Airport for Rome. Ref #: PA.1945649  Date: 02/07/1957

Film star Diana Dors, who has filed a divorce petition against her husband, Dennis Hamilton, pictured with actor Tommy Yeardye before they left London Airport for Rome. Date: 02/07/1957

 

The Caxton Hall wedding between Diana Dors and Dennis Hamilton wasn’t the smoothest of affairs. Before the ceremony the couple had posed for pictures outside (Hamilton had tipped off the press) but eventually the registrar tapped Hamilton on the shoulder and asked for a quiet word. The official discretely told him that he had received an anonymous phone call with the information that the marriage application had been forged.

Hamilton, furious, grabbed the registrar by the throat and shouted: “You’ll marry us, all right, or I’ll knock your fu*king teeth down your throat.”

 

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They had met just five weeks previously after Dennis had chatted Diana up when asking her for a light. She was instantly charmed. Although Diana already had a boyfriend, a man of dubious morals named Michael Caborn-Waterfield, Hamilton sent her flowers almost daily. Unfortunately, Michael went to prison for a fortnight after one too many shady business deals and Dennis pounced. He proposed to Diana at the end of June 1951 and they became Mr and Mrs Hamilton just four days later.

Dors was in the middle of working on a film called Godiva Rides Again [see photo above] so there was no honeymoon after the wedding, just a meal in Olivelli’s in Store Street. The guests all paid for their own meals.

 

At home in 1960

At home in 1960

 

Said Maxwell:

“There would have been parties from my younger days when I was friends with Diana Dors because Diana had parties. hey were not orgies. Not everyone went there and took their clothes off.”

The sex parties became a feature of her life from her first marriage.

By the time of her wedding she had already been a contract girl for J Arthur Rank for five years and had made some fifteen films including a role in David Lean’s Oliver Twist.

She was certainly not untalented but had always struggled to find real noteworthy roles and a rather turbulent private life certainly didn’t help her cause. She had been renting a small flat off the Kings Road from 1949 for six guineas a week but was eventually thrown out after complaints from the neighbours for the endless parties, late nights and loud music. The nights must have been very late and the music very loud because she wrote in her first autobiography in 1960:

“I didn’t realise it but the cute flat was slap dab in the middle of one of the worst areas I could have established myself in, for Chelsea in those days, just after the war, was much wilder than it is today.”

In 1950, while seeing Caborn-Waterfield, she also had a traumatic illegal abortion, performed on a kitchen table in Battersea, for ten quid.

The ‘interesting’ private life didn’t disappear now that she was married to Hamilton. Not long after their wedding he introduced her to, what were basically, sex parties.

 

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Just a few months after Diana and Dennis’s wedding, Bob Monkhouse, then a 24 year old up-and-coming script writer, was invited to one of their parties. The lights were very low when he got there with almost the only lumination coming from a 16mm projector showing hard core porn (stag films or blue movies as they were known then) and there was a faint smell of Amyl Nitrate in the air.

Monkhouse was quickly invited to bed by a very attractive and comely young dancer. It was a little too quickly and he soon realised that something wasn’t quite right. After his eyes adjusted to the darkness he saw that there was a false mirror on the ceiling and the other party guests were watching behind it. Furious, he stormed out of the room, with the ‘dancer’ shouting, “I think he’s a homo”. He was met by Dors in the hallway who said:

“Some people absolutely adore putting on a show, they come back to my parties just to do that.”

 

Scripwriter and comedian Bob Monkhouse with his family, wife Elizabeth, son Simon (centre behind), and adopted daughter Abigail, in their St John's Wood home in London. * 11/05/01 The son of Bob Monkhouse has been found dead in Thailand, a Foreign Office spokesman said. The body of Simon Monkhouse, 46, was found in Bangkok on April 14 but details of his death were only released today, a spokesman said. Mr Monkhouse, from Lambeth, south London, was holidaying alone in Bangkok when his body was found in a hotel, the Sun said. 12/5/01: Monkhouse's ex-wife Elizabeth, Saturday May 12, 2001 told for the first time how she was struggling to cope with the death of her son Simon in Thailand. She said she felt "utterly bereft" to lose a second child after the couple's son Gary died nine years ago and revealed that the last time she heard from Simon, 46, he was"healthy, happy and having the holiday of a lifetime". Meanwhile 72-year-old Monkhouse, who admitted falling out with his son years ago, said he was heartbroken that he would never get the chance to have a reconciliation with him. *29/12/03: Veteran British comedian and television host Bob Monkhouse who died, aged 75, after losing a lengthy battle with prostate cancer.  Ref #: PA.1253487  Date: 23/02/1962

Scriptwriter and comedian Bob Monkhouse with his family, wife Elizabeth, son Simon (centre behind), and adopted daughter Abigail, in their St John’s Wood home in London.  Date: 23/02/1962

 

The following year Monkhouse and Dors met again at a Sunday evening radio show and they had a brief affair. Diana lied that her husband was in New York to lower Monkhouse’s guard. Eventually Hamilton found out about the affair and threatened Monkhouse with a cut-throat razor screaming at his face:

“I’m going to slit your eyeballs!”

Monkhouse only escaped by kneeing Hamilton in the groin and running away, but he once wrote that he had spent the next six years continually looking over his shoulder. He only had to worry for six years because in 1959 Dennis Hamilton suddenly died. His death was initially blamed on a heart attack but the day after the funeral Dors found out that he had died of tertiary syphilis. It never came to light, despite many autobiographies, whether she had contracted the disease herself.

 

Head of the panel of judges, Bob Monkhouse gives a hug to 23-year-old Eileen-Elizabeth Sheridan of Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, after she had won the title of Miss Great Britain, at Morecambe, Lancashire. To their right is runner up Barbara Smith,23, of Walthamstow, London. *29/12/03: Veteran British comedian and television host Bob Monkhouse who died, aged 75, after losing a lengthy battle with prostate cancer.  Ref #: PA.1855119  Date: 01/09/1960

Head of the panel of judges, Bob Monkhouse gives a hug to 23-year-old Eileen-Elizabeth Sheridan of Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, after she had won the title of Miss Great Britain, at Morecambe, Lancashire. To their right is runner up Barbara Smith,23, of Walthamstow, London. Date: 01/09/1960

 

Her career floundered:

Diana Dors made one acclaimed film in the fifties called Yield To The Night – a movie that was loosely based on the Ruth Ellis story but it’s not entirely unfair to say that she starred in some of the worst films ever made. After an unsuccessful foray to Hollywood (a public affair with Rod Steiger and and an incident where Hamilton beat up a photographer unconscious didn’t help), her film career, despite the very early promise, never really took off.

 

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Dors would later complain that while Marilyn Monroe was making How To Marry A Millionaire in Hollywood, she was up in Manchester making It’s A Grand Life with the alcoholic northern comedian Frank Randle. Diana Dors was always a household name but it was her television guest appearances and roles in saucy sex comedies such as The Adventures of a Taxi Driver and Swedish Wildcats, that eventually kept her in the public eye.

She became the diet guru on GMTV in 1983 – where apparently she would weigh herself with all her heavy gold jewellery so it would look like she lost weight the following week. She died of protracted cancer the following year in 1984.

 

 

British film femme fetale, DIANA DORS, 37 holds her five-day old baby son, JASON LAKE in her bed at a Welbeck Street nursing home in London today (Monday). Diana's third husband, Alan Lake, 28 is the father of Jason. Diana has two other sons, Mark, 10, and Gary, 7. They live in Hollywood with their father Dickie Dawson. Ref #: PA.1244663  Date: 15/09/1969

British film femme fetale, DIANA DORS, 37 holds her five-day old baby son, JASON LAKE in her bed at a Welbeck Street nursing home in London today (Monday). Diana’s third husband, Alan Lake, 28 is the father of Jason. Diana has two other sons, Mark, 10, and Gary, 7. They live in Hollywood with their father Dickie Dawson. Date: 15/09/1969

 

Off to Hollywood, California from London's Heathrow airport today, are actress Diana Dors, her husband, actor Alan Lake, and nine year old son Jason. Alan who feels the cold, wears one of Diana's own Christmas presents - a full length mink coat. In America, Miss Dors will visit her grown up sons and appear on TV chat shows. Ref #: PA.1244666  Date: 28/12/1978

Off to Hollywood, California from London’s Heathrow airport today, are actress Diana Dors, her husband, actor Alan Lake, and nine year old son Jason. Alan who feels the cold, wears one of Diana’s own Christmas presents – a full length mink coat. In America, Miss Dors will visit her grown up sons and appear on TV chat shows. Date: 28/12/1978

 

Her son Jason Lake would recall:

“My Dad [Alan Lake] used to get drunk with Richard Harris and Oliver Reed. I’d come back from school and they’d all still be in the living room talking rubbish with the room smelling of cigarettes and alcohol. Lionel Bart had a cocaine habit, so he’d get trashed. I remember him coming out of the loo with cocaine all down his sleeve and Oliver Reed and Dad having sword fights on the lawn.”

 

With a large ring on her engagement finger, actress DIANA DORS is pictured in London to-night (Monday) with 27 year old actor ALAN LAKE, from Stoke-on-Trent, whom she is to wed. Ref #: PA.1244660  Date: 28/10/1968

With a large ring on her engagement finger, actress DIANA DORS is pictured in London to-night (Monday) with 27 year old actor ALAN LAKE, from Stoke-on-Trent, whom she is to wed. Date: 28/10/1968

 

* “There were no taboos in our house. I was only seven but I was free to wander in and out of my mum’s parties, no matter how hot they got. I would walk around in my pajamas chatting to John Lennon and Keith Moon. Mum would wander around serving cups of tea and trying to get people up into the bedrooms. She loved having friends round to watch the porn films made at the parties. They would sit around giggling as couples groped each other and made love on the bed. Most of them didn’t even know they had been filmed.”

 

Lake and Dors acted together.

 

Diana Dors and her husband Alan Lake together for the first time on the stage, are seen in 'Three Months Gone' which opens at the Royal Court Theatre on Wednesday. Ref #: PA.1244664  Date: 26/01/1970

Diana Dors and her husband Alan Lake together for the first time on the stage, are seen in ‘Three Months Gone’ which opens at the Royal Court Theatre on Wednesday. Date: 26/01/1970

At home, sex was a commodity:

“It was a more up-to-date version of the two-way mirror. Some of the girls were wise to it. Mum just said: ‘This is what happens’, and I thought it was completely normal.’ Diana got her kicks by watching others having sex and procuring young women for famous men.

* Dors… admitted in a series of newspaper interviews to hosting sex parties at her home in Berkshire attended by celebrities including Bob Monkhouse. Guests would be encouraged to have sex with aspiring young actresses and Dors’s son Jason Lake alleged that the bedrooms were rigged with 8mm movie cameras and that his mother would enjoy watching the films later.

 

Diana Dors performing at Country Cousin. Ref #: PA.8520371  Date: 09/11/1978

Diana Dors performing at Country Cousin. Date: 09/11/1978

 

Naturally, she knew The Krays.

 

Actress Diana Dors arriving with husband Alan Lake (right) and actor Andrew Ray (centre) at Chingford Old Church today for the funeral service of Mrs Violet Kray, mother of the Kray twins, two of London's most notorious gangsters. The twins, Ronnie & Reggie, were brought from prisons where they are serving life sentences for murder for the funeral. Ref #: PA.1244667  Date: 11/08/1982

Actress Diana Dors arriving with husband Alan Lake (right) and actor Andrew Ray (centre) at Chingford Old Church today for the funeral service of Mrs Violet Kray, mother of the Kray twins, two of London’s most notorious gangsters. The twins, Ronnie & Reggie, were brought from prisons where they are serving life sentences for murder for the funeral. Date: 11/08/1982

 

We’ve nothing to add about Maxwell’s trial, other than that he maintains his innocence.

The man who made a fortune with selling kiss ‘n’ tells about the great and good to the newspapers may take some of the stories he knows to his grave.

 

Wiping away a tear (l) is comedian Freddie Starr and his wife Sandy at the requiem mass of actor Alan Lake at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Sunningdale. Picture behind Freddie Starr is Max Clifford. Archive-PA211617-6 Ref #: PA.15027776  Date: 17/10/1984

Wiping away a tear (l) is comedian Freddie Starr and his wife Sandy at the requiem mass of actor Alan Lake at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Sunningdale. Picture behind Freddie Starr is Max Clifford. Date: 17/10/1984

 

Adam Curtis has a nice aside about how Dors was tabloid gold:

The News of the World was in trouble – it’s circulation was falling. Part of the problem was television, but also its tradition of titillating court reports – randy vicars caught with their trousers down – was feeling tired and out of date. So early in 1960 Sir William Emsley Carr, the alcoholic proprietor of the News of the World appointed a new editor called Stafford Somerfield.

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On his first day as editor, Somerfield called his staff together and – as he described it – “pushed the boat out”.

“What the hell are we going to do about the circulation? It’s going down the drain. We want a series of articles that will make their hair curl.”

In a brilliant book about the British Press, the writer Roy Greenslade describes what Somerfield introduced – “two new forms of provocative content: kiss-and-tell memoirs and saucy investigations”

And right away he found the perfect combination of these in Diana Dors.

Somerfield persuaded her to tell the intimate secrets of her life in a series of articles for the News of the World. He had been fascinated by the Yeardye – Hamilton guns and sex drama and was convinced there was far more to be mined from her life. To get the story he paid Diana Dors £35,000 which was an extraordinary amount for that time.

But he got what he wanted. He sat Dors down with a journalist who recorded everything – and then, as Dors later plaintively complained, took “all the mucky bits” and wrote the story of a scandalous, violent and seedy life.

Ends.