It was the early 70's, I was in between flats and men - more specifically men - and I was staying with my friends Victoria Brooke and Paul Getty in Cheyne Walk, on the Chelsea embankment.
Getty residence "Queen's House" - 14 Cheyne Walk
Mick and Bianca lived a few doors down in one direction – Keith and Anita Pallenberg in the other.
Historically, Cheyne Walk with its great houses overlooking the Thames had always had its resident stars: Bertrand Russell, George Elliot, Laurence Olivier, Henry James and the Pre-Raphaelite artist Dante Gabriel Rossetti–– who had lived at number 14, now the Getty house.
Prosperine by Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Rossetti kept kangaroos and peacocks in the back garden (the peacocks were subsequently banned because of the noise) and the house was haunted. By him, or someone else, I don’t know. There were mysterious footsteps on the stairs, and at night I felt the weight of a body sink down next to me in bed. Either that, or I was so wasted I just imagined it. I often went with Victoria––a famous wit and beauty herself––to tea with the ethereal Bianca where we lay around on her silk cushions, or tried on everything in her wardrobe. The Ozzie Clark dresses, the James Wedge hats.
I was broke then, in between acting jobs, and can remember selling a brass candelabra I’d picked up in the Portobello Road to Anita Pallenberg, down the lane. She grinned her famous grin and gave me a hundred pound note. I can’t say I’d ever seen one.
Anita Pallenberg and Keith Richards
I immediate went to Quorum (Ozzie Clark’s shop on the Kings Road) and bought the latest thing: a snakeskin bomber jacket with a matching mini skirt. In turquoise. Groovy, baby!