Architecture minister John Penrose has given Grade II listings to the childhood homes of Beatles John Lennon and Paul McCartney but has rejected calls to protect the former homes of George Harrison and Ringo Starr
‘Mendips’, the 1930s semi-detached home where Lennon lived for 17 years, and the terraced house in Forthlin Road where McCartney lived for nine years, have been listed following advice from English Heritage. Both properties are owned and managed as visitor attractions by the National Trust.
However applications to list the homes of Harrison and drummer Starr were turned down because ‘they had been altered and modernised, to such an extent, and had so little association with the group’s early development, that they could not be regarded as listable’.
These houses, unremarkable from the outside, have been painstakingly preserved
An application to list the Gate piers and Gates - understood to be replicas of the originals - to the former children’s home Strawberry Fields was also thrown out.
During a visit to Liverpool today (29 February), John Penrose said:’It’s almost impossible to overestimate the significance that The Beatles had – and continue to have - on western life and culture since they first came together in the early 1960s.
‘These houses, unremarkable from the outside, have been painstakingly preserved and restored so that visitors today can get a real sense of how life must have been for the group as they were starting up. They certainly merit the extra protection from demolition and development that listing provides, and will I hope continue to be places of pilgrimage for Beatles fans, young and old, for many years to come.’
Emily Gee, Head of Designation at English Heritage added: ”We’re delighted that the Minister has listed these two evocative houses where Lennon and McCartney developed their talents and created The Beatles. Listing celebrates special interest, and in the case of Mendips and 20 Forthlin Road they possess extraordinary historic and cultural interest for their strong connections with these renowned British musicians.”