Wednesday, 31 October 2012

New Book on Lonnie Donegan

Publisher: The Robson Press
  • Format: Hardback
  • Publication date: 29th Oct 2012
  • ISBN13: 9781849543705
  • Publisher size: Royal
  • Dimensions: 23.4 x 15.6 cm
  • Pages: 338
  • Illustrations: 8 pages

The first ever full-length biography of Lonnie, without whom, no skiffle, no Quarrymen, no Beatles… is out now!

As well as providing a unique picture of the British popular music scene against which The Beatles grew up, the author also obtained interviews with Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr who talked exclusively about their skiffle roots. 

And as if that wasn't enough… the book contains a previously unpublished photo of Lonnie with the three surviving Beatles!

For details visit the website here: Lonnie Donegan and the Birth of British Rock & Roll by Patrick Humphries - The Robson Press

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Memories of Love Me Do!

BBFC Members, John and Rose recently got in touch with us to share their memories of 1962.  It's always fabulous to hear the stories from the people who were there!  Thanks, John and Rose, for allowing us to share your memories on the website!

"We were members of the Cavern Club in 1962 and always went when the Beatles were on (3/6 to get in). They told us that they were going to make a record called Love Me Do, and asked us all to buy it. I ordered it from a market record stall and as the market was on a Thursday they got it for me the day before it was officially released being the Friday, so I have always hoped that I had the very first record of the Beatles to be sold. I will never part with it of course.

Not John and Rose's original, but the anniversary
edition of Love Me Do issued by EMI in 2012

We will never forget the magical Cavern and the wonderful groups who appeared, the Beatles were always the most popular. The girls who sat on the chairs in front of the stage uses to go wild. We used to sit in an alcove on the right of the stage. I remember that the sweat used to pour down John's face when he belted out "Twist and Shout".

We used to have a Coke with them at the little bar at the back of the Club.

Good times gone forever but "We were there!"

John & Rose


Rufus Stone Limited Editions(books) has created something amazing ..
Featuring black and white images by Joe Allen
Edited by Mark Naboshek.

In 1964 the Beatles ….on their first tour of America, a two week visit that took them to Ed Sullivan show, playing live in Washington and New York before finishing in Florida with a second Ed Sullivan experience. Photographer Joe Allen followed them on the entire tour taking hundreds of black and white exclusive photos to document this historic first trip to the USA.

For the first time, all of Allen's negative have been meticulously retouched and restored to better than their original glory and assembled in this huge, limited edition photo album . Beautifully printed and bound using the latest technologies MONOCHROME is destined to be a true collectors item. 

The Technical Details
2500 Copies worldwide, numbered
308mmx 308mm square, 260+ pages.
Quaterbound with white and black cover with embossed logo.
To order this book please go to :

And because we thought that both The Beatles collectors and Joe Allen’s work deserved even bigger exposure we thought to create the HARDKASE edition

The Technical Details
350 Copies worldwide, numbered
308mmx 308mm square, 260+ pages.
Quaterbound with white and black cover and embossed logo.
Presented in a black slipcase with a debossed acrylic graphic.
Threadsewn and bound in the UK. Certificate of authenticity and born on date.
4 x giclee colour photoprints, unique to this version
Packaged in black, printed flightcase with recessed foam compartment
To order this book go to :

For more information on this fabulous book, visit the website by clicking here

Monday, 29 October 2012

The Mersey Beatles in Sweden - back by popular demand

Liverpool's favourite tribute band, the Mersey Beatles, return to Sweden tomorrow for a five-night tour.  Steven Howard, who plays 'Paul' in the band, told the BBFC, "we have a very loyal fan base in Sweden and it's always great to 'get back' to see everyone there."

The Mersey Beatles stepped down from their position as the Cavern's resident Beatles Tribute band in February after ten years because of the increasing demands for overseas tours and concerts elsewhere in the UK.

In the past two weeks, they have performed at the Red Rock resort in Las Vegas and played to enthusiastic and sell-out crowds around Ireland. 

A few tickets are still available at some of the venues; click on the links for more details:

Tuesday 30th October
Gavle Konserthus, Norkopping, Sweden

Wednesday 31st October
Berwaldhallen, Stockholm, Sweden

Thursday 1st November
Karlstad, Sweden

Friday 2nd November
Katalin and All That Jazz venue - Uppsala, Sweden

Saturday 3rd November
Eskilstuna, Sweden

Friday, 19 October 2012

Fab Photos of the Fab Four at the Wensleydale Gallery, Leyburn

Tune into Look North at 6.30pm on Monday (or view it later on iplayer if you're in a different region) for a look at this fabulous exhibition that opens this weekend at the Wensleydale Gallery in Leyburn!

There will be a preview of some of the photos on display, and an interview with the photographer Paul Berriff.

For more information on the exhibition, or the gallery, visit the website at

A Piece of History at the Beatles' Barbers!

Thanks to the people at Tony Slavin's on Smithdown Place (the Penny Lane roundabout) for letting us share this photo.

They recently had a new shop sign fitted, and when they took the old one down, look what they found underneath!

The Beatles, of course, used to get their hair cut at Bioletti's and it's wonderful to have a glimpse of another piece of Beatles history!

The people at Tony Slavin's make visitors very welcome, so next time you're in the Penny Lane area, "stop and say hello!"

For more information on Tony Slavin's, visit the website at

Thursday, 18 October 2012


Bill Elms & Jen Heyes Productions Ltd present

Created by Jen Heyes & Andrew Sherlock | Written by Andrew Sherlock | Directed by Jen Heyes
Starring Andrew Lancel as Epstein and introducing Will Finlason as ‘This Boy’

Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles, the long-awaited world premiere about one of the world’s most successful music entrepreneurs, Brian Epstein, opens in Liverpool in just four weeks’ time. The multi-media play with live music forms part of the official programme of Liverpool’s 50th Anniversary of The Beatles, is a highlight of Liverpool’s annual Homotopia International Arts Festival and the first major production at the newly refurbished Epstein Theatre named after Brian.

Acclaimed actor and TV star Andrew Lancel (Coronation Street, The Bill, Queer as Folk) plays the lead role of Brian Epstein and newcomer Will Finlason takes on the fictional role of ‘This Boy’ – a character that embodies the soul of 60s Liverpool. This two-hander play charts Brian Epstein’s adult life and illustrious career from his drama school days to managing the world’s biggest pop group.
Lancashire-born Andrew Lancel most recently played the high profile part of Frank Foster in ITV’s Coronation Street and has also had notable roles in ITV’s The Bill (as DI Neil Manson), Channel 4’s Queer as Folk (Harvey Black) and BBC1’s Cardiac Arrest (Dr Andrew Collin).

Andrew Lancel said: “As a Beatles fan it’s a daunting but hugely exciting challenge to be playing Brian Epstein and I was very honoured to be asked. This is the first play I’ve accepted in 10 years which says a lot – it’s a powerful and moving piece but also an entertaining insight into one of our own and what makes him tick.”

Will Finlason said: I’m just thrilled to be a part of such a new and exciting piece of theatre! The part itself is a dream come true and having strong family connections with Liverpool makes it all the more special to be making my professional debut in a city so close to my heart.”
Will trained at the Manchester School of Theatre at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU). In his final year he played Prior Walter in Tony Kushner's much acclaimed ‘Angels in America’ and the title role in Stephen Sondheim's ‘Sweeney Todd’. Since graduating in June he has appeared in ‘The Last Train to Tomorrow’, an original work by Carl Davis CBE, which was premiered by the Halle Orchestra at the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester during the summer.

Running from 15 November – 1 December 2012, Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles is brought to you by Bill Elms & Jen Heyes Productions Ltd (Tales from Haunted Liverpool, Tales From Charles Dickens), written by Andrew Sherlock (Wall Talks and The Shankly Show) and created and directed by Jen Heyes (Treasured, Blood Wedding, Wall Talks). Set and costume designer Amanda Stoodley has been appointed to create the perfect look for the play, evoking Brian’s exacting taste and sense of style. Amanda has a wealth of previous experience including acclaimed shows and installations at Manchester Royal Exchange and Liverpool Biennial.

Born in Liverpool in 1934 to Jewish descent, the cool, modern, gay and urbane Brian Epstein spent his early adult life working for the family business NEMS (North End Music Stores), he was drafted into the Royal Army Service Corps and moved to London to join RADA. He returned to Liverpool to manage the brand new NEMS city centre music store and not long after was the historic lunchtime visit to the famous Cavern Club to hear four Liverpool lads perform and the rest is history. Brian died in 1967 of an accidental overdose at the age of 32.

Jen Heyes, co-creator and director said: “After a long and complex development and casting process I can’t believe Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles is almost upon us! Myself and co-producer Bill Elms are very excited, as are the cast and creative team and with rehearsals well underway the production is really coming to life and progressing wonderfully. Andrew Lancel as Brian and Will Finlason as This Boy complement each other so well and the chemistry between the two is electric so audiences are in for a treat.”

Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles is set during this famous but enigmatic man’s last days. This is a must see opportunity to discover a previously unexplored story and celebrate a true icon of 1960s popular culture – a man who shaped music and style across the world.

Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles is sponsored by Gregory Abrams Davidson LLP Solicitors (Matthew Street and Penny Lane).
Writing co-commissioned by Homotopia and supported by Liverpool Vision.
Production partners: The Cavern, The Beatles Story, Hard Days Night Hotel, Magical Mystery Tour, Fab Cabs Beatles Tours, Annexe Inc and Liverpool Echo.
The official charity of production is C.A.L.M.

More information on Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles can be found at


Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles
Starring Andrew Lancel and Will Finlason
The Epstein Theatre
Hanover Street, Liverpool, L1 3DY
Thu 15 November – Sat 1 December 2012

Preview Performances: 15-17 November 2012 Seats from £10
Thu and Sat Matinees: 2.30pm | Mon – Sat Evenings: 7.30pm
Ticket Prices: £10-£24 (Concessions Available)

How to Book:
Box Office: 0844 8000 410* or 0844 888 4411. Online at* or* or in person at the TicketQuarter, Queens Square, Liverpool or the Epstein Theatre, Hanover Street, Liverpool*
*Subject to booking fee. No Booking Fees for cash sales in person.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Birthday Exhibition For George

A special exhibition to celebrate George's 70th birthday will take place at the Liverpool Academy of Arts, 32 Seel Street,  Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 4BE

Works illustrating the Life and Work of George will be on display for two weeks.


No matter where you live in the world you can participate! 

Please send your "HandMade" card (no bigger than 7"x5") to 

Liverpool Academy of Arts, 
32 Seel Street 
L1 4BE, 
United Kingdom.

If you write your name clearly we will post all your names on Facebook and on the "For George" website.

Get drawing!!!

For more information, and to keep up with all the events organised to celebrate George's birthday, visit the For George website at or the facebook page for this event by clicking HERE

Monday, 15 October 2012

Mersey Beatles Tour Ireland

The Mersey Beatles are coming to Ireland….at last! 

The Mersey Beatles will bring their all era Beatles tribute show to Ireland for the first time this October:

21st Galway, Roisin Dubh
Box office: +353 91 509960

23rd Sligo, Hawkswell Theatre
Box office: 071 9161518

24th Omagh, Strule Arts Centre
Box office: 028 8224 7831

25th Derry, Waterside Theatre
Box office: 028 7131 4000

26th Dublin, Grand Social
Box office: +353 (1) 8740076

Only a few tickets are left for each of the shows so get yours now to avoid disappointment!

The boys will perform their all era Beatles concert in full costume. “Love Me Do” to “Let It Be” via “Pepperland”. Having headlined tours and festivals in over 20 countries worldwide, it’s surprising to hear that this will be their first visit to Ireland.

“Throughout our 10 years as Cavern Club residents, visiting Irish people would ask “When are The Mersey Beatles coming to Ireland?” Well, the answer is, this October. Ireland has been in our plans for some time and we’re really looking forward to the tour. See you there!” 

Book your “TICKET TO RIDE” and “GET BACK” through the mists of time on a “MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR” with THE MERSEY BEATLES.

Thursday, 11 October 2012


Sunday 21st October sees the London Beatles Day celebrate 50 years since the release of Love Me Do, the LONDON BEATLES DAY will take place at a brand new venue for us the THE SHERLOCK HOLMES HOTEL 108 Baker Street, London, W1U 6LJ - which is yards from the former Apple boutique, and 2 minutes walk from Baker Street station.

There will be the usual top selection of Beatles Dealers from all over the UK offering an amazing selection of everything Beatles from badges to books to Signed Albums & Rare Original Memorabilia, CDs, T shirts, We pride ourselves on the great selection of Beatles vinyl records from around the UK & the world which will be offered from £1 to £1000+

We are very pleased to welcome HUNTER DAVIES - who will be selling & signing his great new book THE JOHN LENNON LETTERS from 11am to 12 noon. We are also pleased to have along for the day Authors Kevin Roach - who sill be signing/selling his new book about George's family and Gail Renard who will be selling/signing her book - Give me a chance - which is a great insight into John & Yoko's 1969 bed in from a lady who was actually there! ... finally the TREMBLING WILBURYS will be calling by between 1pm - 2pm for a chat & promoting their concert later in the day at 'The Castle Rocks' (452 Finchley Road, London, NW11 8DG) watch out for Glenn Knowler (TREMBLING WILBURY George) at the Sherlock Holmes hotel he is the living image of George Harrison - you must see him to believe it !

Doors open at 10am – 4.30pm – licensed bar & cafe on site - many food outlets very close by, easy ground floor access for disabled people, remember there is NO congestion charge in London on Sundays, free street parking nearby,nearest underground/ tube Baker Street

Admission is on day - SPECIAL INTRODUCTION PRICE only £3

As always come and have a chat with Fellow Beatles fans - Always a great day out with like minded Beatles people..

For Event detail check out :
Or call 07801 564622 / 07785 923695

Friday, 5 October 2012


At 11.50am UK time today the people of Liverpool smashed a Guinness World Record and in doing so celebrated the 50th anniversary of the release of the Beatles debut single ‘Love Me Do’ in unique style.
The crowds at the Pier Head for the record attempt

Instigated by the city’s award-winning Beatles Story attraction with the support of Liverpool City and the Albert Dock, 1631 people sang their hearts out on a cold October morning smashing the previous record set by a group in Chicago, USA in October 2011.  Their backdrop? The city’s iconic Liver Building of course.

The record – the most people singing ‘in a round’ – previous stood at 897. ‘A round’ is where two groups sing exactly the same melody with each group beginning at different times so that different parts of the melody coincide in the different voices.
The 'Beatles' help to conduct the choirs!

Those contributing to smash the Guinness World Record included 1400 local choir members, Liverpudlians, international tourists, local schools, lunching office workers, shoppers and a legion of Beatles fans who had travelled from as far away as Brazil, Argentina, Norway and even Australia.
Some of the school-children singing and
dancing to the Beatles!

There was even a couple celebrating their 50th anniversary attending who’d had ‘Love Me Do’ as their first wedding dance!

Jerry Goldman, MD of The Beatles Story, who helped organize the event said;
“What a magnificent way for Liverpool to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the debut single of the world’s most influential group. The choirs were amazing, the schools were superb and the people who travelled from all over the world to be part of this event did us all proud. 
Cheers when the news is announced that the
World Record has been smashed!

“We smashed a Guinness World Record on the biggest ever anniversary of the Beatles music and that has now gone down in musical history.”
Jerry Goldman displaying the certificate
confirming the new World Record!

Jennifer John from Liverpool’s Sense of Sound, who organized the singers said,
“It has been a stressful few weeks ensuring that all the schools and choirs in and around Liverpool had the chance to take part in musical history. But every single person did us proud. I was so impressed by the 1631 members of the public who came down and swelled the crowd with their voices. It’s a shame that it only lasted three minutes but now we have the Guinness World Record to remember it all by.”

Thursday, 4 October 2012

A "Love Me Do" Marathon of Celebrations for Liverpool's Mersey Beatles!

The Mersey Beatles will celebrate 50 years of the release of The Beatles first single this Friday and Saturday.

A "Love Me Do marathon" of events starts for them at 11am on Friday when the boys will be live on BBC Radio Humberside via link up to BBC studios in Liverpool.

Between 2pm and 5pm The Mersey Beatles will perform live on Radio Merseyside.
This will be an acoustic set including 3 versions of "Love Me Do", in 3 different genres
as requested by host Billy Butler.

Later they play in Formby at the St John Stone venue. Unfortunately for fans all 250 seats have been sold out for weeks.

On Saturday The Mersey Beatles will be at Grimsby Central Hall to perform their all era concert including back projection, four costumes and around 40 of your favourite Beatles songs 100% live and in the original recorded key.  A few tickets for this special event are still available; click HERE for more information and to book.

On Sunday, BBC4 will air an one-hour documentary, “Love Me Do: The Beatles ‘62”, in which Stuart Maconie explores the story behind the Beatles first single, and how it went on to change music history and popular culture forever. Guest-starring The Mersey Beatles, and featuring reflections from pop artist Sir Peter Blake, Bob Harris and former Beatles drummer Pete Best, this is not to be missed!

Then it's all down to London in time to celebrate John Lennon’s birthday by playing a sold out dinner concert on the Thames aboard the all-glass symphony boat.  100 very lucky guests will enjoy this special evening.

If you can't get to these shows why not join The Mersey Beatles on 10th November as they become the first Beatles tribute band to play at The Epstein Theatre, Liverpool.  Ticket availability is already limited, so book now to avoid disappointment by clicking HERE or go to

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Love Me Do!

This weekend Liverpool will lead the way with a series of special events celebrating the 50th anniversary of the release of Love Me Do!

The celebrations begin at the Princes Dock, where thousands are expected to gather in a World Record breaking attempt, singing Love Me Do.  

Organised by the City of Liverpool in conjunction with the award-winning Beatles Story attraction, this unmissable experience is set to take place at The Cruise Liner Terminal, Princes Dock, Liverpool.

The timings for the attempt are: 
  • 10.00am - Arrival
  • 10.30am - Rehearsal
  • 11.30am - Break
  • 11.50am - Record attempt

But the World Record Attempt is just the first event in a day of celebrations!  
There will be a fantastic showcase of live music at Albert Dock all weekend!  Between 12pm and 5pm bands and choirs will be performing in Anchor Courtyard, with even more live music at venues including PanAm and Circo.  Don’t miss the special night-time projection on the Docks walls too!
Meanwhile, the world's most famous club, the Cavern Club, will mark the anniversary with special shows throughout the day.

From 2pm, the Cavern's resident bands, including the Beatelles, Liverpool's fabulous all-girl Beatles tribute band, will perform on the iconic front stage with FREE entry before 8pm (£3 thereafter).

Then, from 8.30, the Cavern's resident Beatle Band, The Cavern Club Beatles, will take to the stage for a theatre-style celebration in the Cavern's Live Lounge.  Tickets are £12 and are available HERE!

The Mersey Beatles
If you can't make it to Liverpool, don't worry!  Liverpool's favourite tribute band, the Mersey Beatles are performing special celebration concerts on Friday night at the St John Stone theatre, near Southport (completely sold out), and at the beautiful Grimsby Central Hall on Saturday -- a few tickets are still available; click HERE for more information and to book.

The Arena Hotel presents previously unseen Beatles archive exclusively on The Space

Still from the unseen Beatles footage showing the Beatles enjoying fish and chips. 
© Apple Films Ltd 

The Arena Hotel is a ground-breaking online project for The Space, the new digital arts service developed by the Arts Council in partnership with the BBC. For the first time, Arena, the multi-award winning BBC television arts series, is opening up its unique archive in an innovative and entertaining new format to offer audiences the chance to watch exclusive material.  

Still from the unseen Beatles footage showing the Beatles enjoying fish and chips. 
© Apple Films Ltd 
In association with Apple Films, Arena has been granted unique access to some very special unseen footage of the Beatles during the making of a documentary about their 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour and is showing it exclusively at The Arena Hotel at

Still from the unseen Beatles footage showing the Beatles enjoying fish and chips. 
© Apple Films Ltd 
Arena has cut this unseen footage to make a new short in which the Beatles take you on a magical coach trip from the Hotel to a classic British fish and chip shop. Shot en route to Newquay, the final destination of the Magical Mystery Tour, the film is available to view exclusively on The Space.

Still from the unseen Beatles footage showing the Beatles enjoying fish and chips. 
© Apple Films Ltd 
The film shows the Beatles relaxed and sharing fish and chips with their fellow passengers from the Magical Mystery Tour coach in a chippy in Taunton.

Still from the unseen Beatles footage showing the Beatles enjoying fish and chips. 
© Apple Films Ltd 
Magical Mystery Tour was first broadcast as the centrepiece of the BBC’s Boxing Day schedule in 1967. It confused and alienated audiences, was savaged by the critics and, aside from a muted appearance on BBC Two in 1979, has not been shown since.

Still from the unseen Beatles footage showing the Beatles enjoying fish and chips. 
© Apple Films Ltd 
From Tuesday 2 October, audiences can visit The Arena Hotel on The Space ( to get their first glimpse of this never before seen footage from the cutting room floor of the Magical Mystery Tour.

And on Saturday 6 October at 21.45 on BBC Two, Arena: The Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour Revisited  presents a new documentary which reassesses the artistic merit and cultural significance of the film before treating viewers to the digitally remastered full length Magical Mystery Tour – for the first time in 33 years.

Magical Mystery Tour 
© Apple Films Ltd
Arena Editor, Anthony Wall says, “Few people have seen Magical Mystery Tour in its entirety and the material in the chip shop has never been shown anywhere. It captures perfectly the fabulous world of The Beatles at this time. They’re happily sharing a simple meal with the other passengers on the coach as the astonished residents of Taunton gather outside and at the same time creating an extraordinarily avant garde film, which of course would soon be broadcast by the BBC to a dumbstruck nation.”

In a project exclusively for The Space, Arena is opening up its unique film archive to the public, and making it available through The Arena Hotel. Guests can browse clips from the programme’s archive of 600 films, presented in the fully immersive environment of a virtual hotel.

Magical Mystery Tour 
© Apple Films Ltd
Anthony Wall continues, “The Arena Hotel is the perfect place to enjoy clips like this – it’s a philosophically different way of presenting and experiencing archive. We’re trying to offer a kind of matrix of material from which guests spin their own narratives. In this case they are free to make all sorts of unprescribed connections between the Beatles film and other weird and wonderful characters and phenomena that you can experience in the hotel.”

Watch the exclusive Beatles footage here

Arena: The Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour is on BBC Two, Saturday 6th October, 21.45 GMT

Magical Mystery Tour 
© Apple Films Ltd

Arena Hotel Director: Alex Jones
Arena Series Editor: Anthony Wall
Producer for The Space: Simon Still

The concept of The Arena Hotel is based on an original idea by Emma Matthews and Anthony Wall.

NB: All images are used here with permission; please do not download or reproduce any of the images without the express permission of the copyright holder.