On July 6, 1957, Ivan Vaughan introduced Paul McCartney to John Lennon for the first time. Among the lads hanging out in St Peter’s Church Hall that day was a young Dave Peters, and he witnessed the moment that musical history was made.
|Dave, with the Quarrymen and one of the many
Beatles fans who visit St Peter's Church Hall
Over fifty years later, Dave regularly relived that moment by sharing it with the countless Beatles fans who visited St Peter’s as part of their Beatles pilgrimage. He would take the groups to the very spot where John and Paul met, and bring the past to life as he shared his memories of the day.
I first had the privilege of meeting Dave in June 2008. He was amused because he could see me visibly trembling as I stood where John and Paul had stood just over fifty years before. But I knew he understood why I was so excited, and I know that he appreciated my excitement.
I asked him why he remembered the meeting; after all, at the time it happened no-one realised the significance of the moment. Dave grinned at me, and with the twinkle in his eye that never diminished, he explained that it was unusual for a lad from outside Woolton to come to the fete, so Paul was attracting attention. The twinkle brightened as he went on to tell me that the Woolton girls were all intrigued by Paul, including the girl that Dave liked. So Paul was memorable because the Woolton lads were worried about losing their girlfriends to him!
|With Dave, at the spot where John and Paul
were first introduced by Ivan Vaughan
I later moved to Woolton and became a member of St Peter’s Church. Dave asked if I’d like to help him with showing visitors to the Church around, and he taught me his story. On days when we were both in the Hall, he would watch me as I gave the tour to make sure that I was doing it right. The last time I saw him was the weekend of John’s birthday this year. We were very busy that day, and, at the end of the day, Dave told me I was doing a good job. It was a special day and I will treasure the memory forever.
Last night, Dave lost his battle with illness, and we lost another part of Beatles history. Dave was a wonderful, kind and generous man. He had a great spirit, and a great sense of humour. I am privileged to have known him, and I will try to honour his memory by sharing his story with the Beatles fans who continue to come to St Peter’s.
RIP Dave, and thank you.
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