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Nineteenth Annual Beatle Convention in Liverpool.
Wednesday 25th  - Tuesday 31st August 1999

Is it really a year since last year’s Beatle Week? It’s getting scary, they seem to come around so quickly. if you are a reg­ular it’s let your hair down time again —and if you are a first time visitor to our fair city we know it won’t be your last. As we have said and demonstrated every year now for over a decade: “This year’s promises to be the best yet” Get right into it, because before you know it, it will be over and we will be counting the days until the next one.
Well, as is the norm for us these days it’s been a busy year at Cavern City Tours. On a personal note the CCT family had a couple of additions. Lynsey in the Cavern had a baby daughter Laura, and our very own Ray Johnson had a beauti­ful daughter, Ellie, who thankfully does not possess Ray’s sticky-out ears!
On the musical front Colin Manley of the Remo Four passed away suddenly which was a big shock to the local Merseybeat scene. A fantastic benefit night was held at The Philharmonic Hall featuring The Searchers, The Mersey­beats, Peter Sarsted, Herman’s Hermits and a galaxy of other 60s stars who paid their own special tribute to one of the region’s top musicians.
Sadly, Brian O’Hara of the Fourmost committed suicide at the end of June which will also be an immense loss. Dave Jones experienced a tremendous personal blow in July when his mother died after a long illness. We shall miss them all.
Business-wise, Cavern City Tours has been pre-occupied with the plans for the Hard Day’s Night Hotel which will open in late 2000. We are hoping it will be open in time for a celebration of John’s 60th Birthday and we are busy trying to persuade the Council to rename North John Street at the top of Mathew Street What are we hoping to rename it? Why, John Street of course! We also hope to unveil a beautiful new statue of John as well. It will be sad day as everybody still misses him so much, but we are deter­mined to commemorate this very important birth date in a fitting manner. The shock of the year? Easy that one! It’s got to be the phone call from Apple inviting us to London to discuss the pro­motion of Yellow Submarine. A meeting was held in Hollywood attended by Capitol Records, EMI, Apple and MGM. It was decided to approach Cavern City Tours and it was a unanimous decision to hold the Yellow Submarine premiere ‘In the town where they were born’. We were only too happy to incorporate such a prestigious world-wide event into our Beatle Week. So that’s the scoop behind The Yellow Submarine Mathew Street Festival.

To add to the fun of the day a huge Yellow Submarine stage will be erected in Castle Street outside the Town Hall. This of course was the scene of The Beatles fabulous home coming welcome in July 1964, when the occasion was another premiere — that of A Hard Day’s Night - and when you look at the line-up, I’m sure you’ll agree that it is the strongest line-up of bands that we can remember. Don’t forget to get there early as it is sure to be the busiest stage of them all.

Don’t be late for the premiere - doors open at 7pm and don’t forget -Apple are a offering prize for the best Yellow Submarine Fancy Dress.

Let’s hope that Apple and EMI will con­tinue to recognise the great work that’s being done in Liverpool and how The Beatles have been the catalyst for the development of a vibrant tourism indus­try. It would be great to have an official input every year.
The other big celebration this week­end is of course the 40th Anniversary of the opening of The Casbah, to the very day! Pete Best and Ken Brown who both played on that historic occasion will be on hand to host this huge party. The bands who are playing are very excited as there have not been many bands who have played the venue since the days of The Beatles. The Council have reduced the licence numbers so we have had to stage this event in two halves, but don’t worry, the added bonus is a gig by Hamish Stuart from Paul’s band. Make sure you look at page 30 for details of bus departures for The Casbah.

Adelphi Ballroom. The night-club burnt down earlier this year and Britannia have no plans to rebuild it, so the Ballroom will be set up for all live music events throughout the weekend. This effectively will serve as the Residents’ bar for all of our after mid­night bashes. Don’t forget (as usual) to have all of your keycards and tickets ready for inspection as you return to the Adelphi after the evening shows.
Please use the Banqueting Entrance in Brownlow Hill - do not use the front entrance on Lime Street unless you are an Adelphi resident

Please check the programme for the details of Instant Karma at the Cavern Club on Tuesday and note there are two shows, check your tickets for the times. Don’t worry if your ticket is for the late Instant Karma Show as there will still be excellent llve music in front of the Cavern all through the afternoon.

Watch out for an error in the Brochure. The departure time for the Lennons Liverpool and Macca Tours is 9.30am from Brownlow Hill.

So, all in all another action packed weekend meeting friends old and new amidst a backdrop of the finest music ever recorded. There’s so much going on but don’t forget to visit the old chestnuts, Beatles Story, Beatles Shop and a Ferry ‘cross the Mersey, all of which have something a little dif­ferentto offer this year.
The Beatles Shop has opened its own John Lennon Gallery on top of the shop and is a welcome addition to the attractions in and around Mathew Street. Perhaps the most convenient days to visit will be either Thursday afternoon due to its close proximity to the Cavern Pub or on Tuesday before or after Instant Karma’s gig.

The Beatles Story, (contrary to my inaccurate observation in last year’s programme) has undergone a number of changes which fans will be keen to check out, notably a Free as a Bird exhibition, a Casbah tribute and some nice new memorabilia. Your trip won’t be complete without a visit to The Beatles Story at The Albert Dock, which is next door to the Ferry ‘Cross the Mersey departures. This year the Ferries are staging a Ferry Beat Cruise featuring Ringer, The Shoes and the Fabz from Scotland. The Ferry sails at 7.30pm on Sunday and although it clashes with the Convention, is a superb alternative echoing the days when there was a Beat Cruise almost every month. This really will be a trip down Memory lane. The Beatles of course played the Royal Iris ferry on its trip up and down the Mersey. Tickets will be available from the Ferry terminal at the Pier Head.

And finally don’t forget the Cavern Pub features free entertainment all weekend and you can gain free entrance to The Cavern Club on any night by simply showing your hotel key-card. Don’t forget the Club is open for free all Sunday afternoon with bands appearing all day.

If you get time to think of your stomach over the weekend the best place to eat is at our very own Sports Restaurant, De Coubertin’s (around the corner from The Cavern Club) which has been recognised as one of the City’s finest, and it won’t break the bank either.

So that’s it then. Ready? Steady? Go! Enjoy the world’s biggest and best Beatle celebration.

Bill Heckle
July 1999




For brochure please telephone: +44 (0) 151 236 90000


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