“We’re a band for life,” declares pianist Chas Hodges, one half of pop rock duo Chas and Dave, who have been performing together for more than 40 years.

The 73-year-old is musing about his friendship with guitarist Dave Peacock, 71, while tending to his beloved allotment.

During the murky winter months, the crops are sparse, but this gives Chas time to clear his head while he tidies up and tends to the remaining leeks, parsnips and Brussel sprouts that have been left over from Christmas.

The pair, who grew up in Enfield, formed in 1972 and their “rockney” sound has remained popular for decades.

Their most famous hits include Rabbit, Ain’t No Pleasing You, Down to Margate and Gertcha, which all incorporate a distinctive cockney tone and keep them close to their London roots even after so many years.

Their debut album One Fing 'n' Anuvver was released in 1975 and included the track Ponders End Allotments Club, which may be where Chas first encountered the green-fingered lifestyle.

As he prepares to perform all their hits from over the years at Wylotts Centre, in Potters Bar, next Friday, he explains why his friendship with Dave has stood the test of time.

Chas says: “I believe the secret to our longevity is that we have always done our own thing and have always been a bit different to other things out there.

“Friendships always develop and you never know how long they will last, but I think me and Dave have a friendship for life.

“We knew each other before we got together in the band but obviously working together never affected our bond or put a strain on it.”

Chas first met Dave in 1963 and they developed a strong bond almost instantly.

He remembers: “An old mate picked me up one night after I had been performing. He was in a band too and his bass player was Dave and it all went from there.

“We didn’t think of getting together initially because we were both bass players in our respective bands but when we did get together, I started playing the piano more.

“Our family became friends and still are friends, so everything just fell into place and has worked well over the years. My wife is friends with his sister and she was best friends with Dave’s wife, who sadly died in 2008.”

Chas fondly remembers his passion for being on the stage beginning in his home town.

He says: “My very first gig was in a pub in Edmonton when I was 13 and I was part of a skiffle band, which mixes jazz and folk with homemade instruments.

“I remember performing a lot of Lonnie Donovan songs, as he was a big skiffle artist and someone came along and gave me a pound note.

“They told me it was for the show and from there, I thought this was the life for me.”

Chas started in the music industry in 1958 by backing American musician Jerry Lee Lewis in a band called The Outlaws as a teenager.

He says: “I knew straight away that I wanted to play like him. That’s how I started, by singing his songs and playing piano like him.

“I started touring America with the band and found myself singing in an American accent. However, this made me feel like a fraud, as I wanted to be myself.

“So when I came back, I rang up Dave, who I had been friends with for at least ten years at this point, and suggested me and him get together.

“I told him I had ideas about writing songs about things I know and singing in my own accent and he was up for it and that was the start of our band.”

Chas reckons the reason people keep coming to see their shows is due to the pair regularly updating their tunes.

“When people come to see us, not only will the see us do our hits, they will also hear things they have never heard before.

“We always put something a little bit new in to keep the life going and get people to keep coming back time and time again.”

Chas And Dave, Wylotts Centre, Darkes Lane, Potters Bar, EN6 2HN, Friday, February 17, 7pm, details: 01707 645005