Thursday, January 6, 2011

To Bootle

January 6, 1961

The Beatles "home base" is situated in  districts to the south of Liverpool city center (or is that centre?)  such as Allerton and Woolton.  Today they play a gig in the borough to the north called Bootle.  Bootle is a very ancient part of Liverpool, established in the time of Anglo-Saxon domination, before the revolution brought about by the Norman conquests that started in 1066.  In the 19th century, it had become an upscale suburb and is filled with Victorian buildings of that period.  Lately, since the decline of the shipping industry and rising unemployment, it has fallen on harder times and now has the reputation of being one of the rougher areas of Liverpool.  But today it was to witness something of the exuberance of Beatles rock and roll.  (Since 1960, Bootle has undergone something of a resurgence.)

A very young would-be promoter, aged 17 years named Dave Forshaw, was also in attendance at the turning-point performance at Litherland at the end of 1960.  He saw his chance and took it.  He booked the Beatles for some of the dates not reserved by Brian Kelly for shows organized by himself.  Tonight, he put them on at Saint John's Hall in the Bootle.

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