A look back at The Beatles in Scarborough on the 50 year anniversary of their split

Today (April 10) marks the 50th anniversary of The Beatles splitting up.

Thursday, 9th April 2020, 11:39 am
Updated Thursday, 9th April 2020, 12:22 pm
Tickets for one of the 1964 concerts.
Tickets for one of the 1964 concerts.

Though the band had been on an extended hiatus for several months, a press interview sent out by Paul McCartney to promote his debut solo album McCartney was seized upon as an official announcement of the band’s breakup.

Paul’s response to whether he saw Lennon-McCartney becoming an active songwriting partnership again was a simple ‘no’.

The Beatles played a total of four gigs in Scarborough - two on December 14 1963 and two on Sunday August 9 1964.

The Beatles at the Futurist in 1963.

On both occasions the band played at The Futurist Theatre on the Foreshore and, as you would expect, drew huge crowds of fans, with some queuing for more than 30 hours for tickets for the ‘63 shows when they went on sale.

The Scarborough Evening News attended those gigs, but the reviewer said the music was virually drowned out by screaming fans and it was impossible to hear any of the band speak.

The review goes on to say some 20 girls actually passed out briefly after becoming overcome by the continuous screaming and crying, according to a first aider.

At the end of the second show in 1963, the 600 fans surged forward and it was only a police cordon that prevented them getting onto the stage.

Screaming fans at the 1963 concert.

It was not the first time that evening the police had held fans back, forming a human barricade between the two shows to keep a crowd of 500 out of a passeway that lead from Bland’s Cliff to the stage door.

The Futurist was the smallest venue the band played on this tour but still proved to be an eventful evening.

Scenes were similar in 1964 when once again police and theatre staff had a hard time controlling the crowds outside prior to the first show.

The Beatles were smuggled into the stage door whilst the police staged a diversion at the front of The Futurist.

Police struggling to hold back the crowds before the concert.

However The Scarborough Evening News reported at the time this ploy had worked a little too well and John, Paul, George and Ringo had to appear at a window to prove to fans that they were actually inside.

Again fans tried to storm the stage but in much smaller numbers than the year before and were easily held back.

When the band came in 1964, their debut film A Hard Day’s Night was in its third week at the Odeon, a consolation for those who couldn’t get tickets.

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