Monday, August 8, 2011

Beatles in Liverpool: Birthplaces

 This is the Liverpool Maternity Hospital where John Lennon was born on October 9, 1940 to Julia and Alfred Lennon. Alfred was a seaman who was away at the time of John's birth. He was often away but sent checks home to Julia. He went AWOL in February 1944, and shortly thereafter Julia moved from Newcastle Road to Mendips to live with her sister.
 Alfred did come home six months after that and offered to support the family, but by then Julia was pregnant by another and declined. Julia handed John's care off to her sister Mimi after visits from Social Services (initiated by Mimi). In 1946, Alfred visited Mimi and unbeknownst to her tried to emigrate to New Zealand with him during the visit.
 Julia and her boyfriend followed him, and Julia got into a heated argument with Alfred. Alfred forced 5 year old John to choose between them. John chose Alfred twice, but as is mother walked away in tears he followed her instead.
 This is 9 Madryn Lane where Ringo Starr was born with the name Richard Starkey on July 7, 1940 to Elsie and Richard Starkey, a confectioner. Starr lived here for 3 years.
 Starr was ill much of his youth. When he was six he fell into a coma from complications with appendicitis. At 13, he was admitted into a snatorium for two years with chronic pleurisy. This impacted his education significantly.
 I turned the camera to the right and took a photo up the street.
 Then to the left and took a photo down the street.
The homes on this street are now abandoned and are scheduled for demolition.

 This is the home directly across the street from Ringo's. Ringo's dad had an affair with the woman in this house. Not smart, as that will come out eventually on this tiny street! When Elsie found out, she kicked him out and his father moved across the street. If you look closely, you can see a tribute to his son's success he later embedded into the home's facade.
 They are in deplorable condition and Kevin said the walls actually bowed out, which I attempted to capture in this photo.
 Kevin then took us to Arnold Grove, where George Harrison was born on February 25, 1943. His parents Harold and Louise had lived there since 1930 when they rented it for ten shillings a week.

 I asked Kevin about the sign saying "Unadopted", and he said it means that Arnold Grove is a private street. To this day, this short street (just a couple hundred feet) is eerily quiet. The day we were there, two little kids from across the street came running out to greet us. It was the highlight of their day to say hi to the tourists.

 This is 12 Arnold Grove where the Harrison family, with their four kids, lived. The rooms were all 10x10 ft and there was a single coal fire. The rent continued to rise and the family moved out when George was six.
When George found out he had cancer a few years ago, he brought his son back to see the house. The current owner graciously allowed him in.

We didn't get to tour Paul's birthplace, Liverpool General Hospital (aka Walton Hospital) in northern Liverpool.

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