It was sixty years ago today…..

Exactly 60 years ago today, the Beatles played here, the Grosvenor Ballrooms in liscard, Wirral. Between June 1960 and September 1961 they played here 14 times and apparently hated the place. There were constant fights with hundreds of teddy boys from different ends of the town, squaring up. The Beatles often had to run from the stage mid performance to save their equipment.

That gig on February 24th 1961 was their first on the Wirral that year and their first time the regulars at the Grosvenor would have seen them since the first Hamburg tour of 1960. They would have appeared to be a very different band entirely to the one that performed regularly the summer before, much tighter sounding, more complete and of course sporting their new black leather look.

As you can see the venue still remains, as do quite a few on the other side of the River Mersey. These shots were taken today, exactly 60 years to the day that those 5 young lads played here, for there were 5 of them originally. The line up then was John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Stu Sutcliffe, George Harrison and either Tommy Moore or Pete Best on drums. It also would have been one of Stuart Sutcliffe’s last UK appearances with the band before they left for Hamburg again in March.

“It was 60 years ago today…” is my latest photography project. On their journey to stardom the Beatles played at lots of venues around Merseyside. Everything from the famous Cavern to village halls. Some of these places still remain and I aim to photograph as many of them as possible, taking the pictures exactly 60 years to the day they played there. It should be completed in August next year and i hope to publish the work in a zine on completion. Please subscribe if you would like to be kept up to date and to follow my ramblings. You would be most welcome.

Grosvenor Ballroom 24th February 2021

The Beatles had a Saturday night residency here during the summer of 1960 but such were the levels of violence that ensued, spilling out onto the streets, Wallasey Corporation (who owned the building) had no choice but to ban the events.

2 thoughts on “It was sixty years ago today…..

  1. Very interesting! I’ve never seen this building before, it’s sad that the fans and others rand the Beatles out of the place. I was a little boy then, but the music has stuck with me all my life. These guys were way ahead of their time.

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    1. Im not far off your age John so i know what you mean. Their music was almost a soundtrack to my childhood and to live where most of their stories started is a priviledge. There’s plenty more of these small ballrooms and village halls but they didn’t play any more on the Wirral, other than New Brighton Tower that i wrote about last month and is no more, for another year. So there might be a gap…..

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