Whether you have remained "glued" to the 1970s or gently nostalgic, unconditional fan or simply curious, you have to attend at least once in your life at the International Beatles Week in Liverpool. From August 26 to 31, Beatlesmaniacs from around the world will converge on the city port of England. Throughout this week, beware of hallucinations: between the concerts of imitators of the mythical group and the visit of the places he frequented, we risk coming across a lot of look-alikes of Lennon and his companions ...
The beetles that lay the golden eggs
Liverpool, its docks in full rehabilitation, its football club. The port city in North East England probably wouldn't be famous the world over if it hadn't given birth to four hot boys who revolutionized pop music. John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Richard Starkey, known as Ringo Starr, who made The Beatles the most adored band of all time, have also given their hometown a godsend.
So, in Liverpool, The Beatles have become the number one tourist attraction. The least of the places frequented by one of the Fab Four has been transformed into a land of pilgrimage. Fans, there's plenty to see (not always value for money, actually): John and Paul's childhood homes (open to the public), John's High School (Quarry Bank Grammar School), the Liverpool Institute where Paul and George studied, the legendary Cavern Club (rebuilt identically) where the group gave their first concerts, etc. The street that houses the latter, Mathew Street, is now dedicated to the Beatlesmania: souvenir and record shops, shopping arcade, pubs and restaurants ... Not to mention the very good museum dedicated to the group, The Beatles Story Experience, and we go!
To top it off, an event was needed that brought together crowds of migrating Beatlesmaniacs. Since 1981 (six months after the assassination of John Lennon, is it a coincidence?), The "International Beatles Week" attracts at the end of each August fans, look-alikes, imitators or simply curious. from all over the world. Hang in there, this year's program is rock n 'roll once again!
Full of boys in the wind from all over the world
For the record, the International Beatles Week is organized by Cavern same owners of the Cavern Club and specialists in the tourist trade of The Beatles. They have found the right vein!
Between August 26 and 31, more than two hundred groups will perform in cult places in Liverpool, at the Cavern Club of course, but also at the Royal Court or on the pier that borders the Mersey. In the opinion of connoisseurs, we will witness the performances of the best Beatles imitators. The poster, therefore enticing, is international: the Fab Four will come from California, the Fab Faux from New York, Liverpool from Sweden, the Parrots from Japan and the Clube Big Beatles from Brazil ... And since we are not monomaniac , a small place will be reserved for the other groups which marked the time of the Beatles. On August 28, therefore, on the pier bordering the Mersey, a tribute to the stars of the 1970s: from the Rolling Stones to Led Zep, from Dylan to Hendrix via the Who, everyone will be entitled to their imitation.
Liverpool gives in to psychedelia
Two events are particularly expected. Like every year, Sunday (August 29) will be the day of the Beatles Convention, a real marathon that will last until late at night. On the program, concerts of course (about fifty groups during the day!), But also a Beatles competition, a flea market where you can find records and other gadgets bearing the image of the group, video projections or even the city discovering the holy places of the Beatle cult.
The next day, it will be the turn of the Mathew Street festival. Six stages will be set up in the city center, for free shows that attract thousands of fans with each edition. The neighborhood pubs and restaurants will also be there. The day will end with a series of concerts by Liverpudlian groups with evocative names: Instant Karma, the Mersey Beatles, the George Harry's Son ...
Good advice: allergic to the Beatles, refrain! But if you're a fan, nostalgic for the 1970s, or if, quite simply, the recent Eurostar advertisement featuring our must-have Fab Four made you laugh, then don't hesitate. The cult of the Beatles still has a bright future ahead of it.
Small addresses in Liverpool
- Tourist Information Center: Queen Square. Phone. : (00-44) (0) 151-709-51-11. Fax 44) (0) 151-708-02-04. Internet: www.visitliverpool.com. Open Monday to Saturday 9 a.m. (10 a.m. Tuesday) to 17:30 p.m. and Sunday 10:30 a.m. to 16:30 p.m.
- Cavern Club 44) (0) 871-222-19-57.
- The Beatles Story Experience: Albert Dock. Phone. : (00-44) (0) 151-709-19-63. Open every day from 10 a.m. to 18 p.m. Admission: £ 8,45 (€ 12,60).
Or sleep ?
Few B & B, big city obliges, and no campsite in the vicinity.
- Embassie Youth Hostel: 1, Falkner Square. Phone. : (00-44) (0) 151-707-10-89. Fax 44) (0) 151-707-82-89. Count £ 13,50 (€ 20,15) per night per person. Occupies the former Embassy of Venezuela. Kitchen available. Difficult to escape its joyful fraternal atmosphere!
- The Lord Nelson Hotel: Lord Nelson Street. Phone. : (00-44) (0) 151-709-43-62. Fax 44) (0) 151-707-13-21. Double room with or without bathroom from 42 to 48 £ (62,65 to 71,60 €), breakfast included. Pleasant and unpretentious.
For those who prefer “all-inclusive” packages, Cavern City Tours offers hotel + ticket packages, from £ 106,50 to £ 279 (€ 158,70 to € 415,75). Internet forms to be completed, printed, then returned to the company.
Tickets only: £ 4 to £ 15 (€ 6 to 22,35). Information, tel. 44) (0) 151-236-90-91.
On the Web
- The full program of the week (in English).
- For a first glimpse of the festival, the site of a Swedish fan who publishes the photos of the last six editions (in English).
- To know everything about the Beatles, from their common adventure to their respective solo careers, a very nice and very complete site, in French, with the bonus of photos, thematic files, the lyrics and the extracts of all the songs of the group.