The Liverpool Four: A Journey to the Beatles' City – Road.Travel

The Liverpool Four: A Journey to the Beatles' City

Road Trip Route. Visit the world's largest permanent exhibition dedicated to the Liverpool Four., Take a stroll down Penny Lane., Play a vinyl record at the legendary The Grapes Pub..

The combination of English prim and youthful maximalism gave the world the so-called Fab Four, or "The Magnificent Four" - the Beatles. What do you think of the idea of walking around the musicians' hometown and visiting places marked by the work of the iconic British rock band?

History and Culture. From: Liverpool

ZIMA Guide.

Travel Itinerary and Road Trip Route

Day 1: Liverpool

Immerse yourself in the history of Britain's legendary rock band and be prepared to learn the secrets of the talented musicians' inspiration. Start with a visit to Liverpool's main club on Mathew Street and once a Beatles' favourite venue, then check out The Cavern Club and head to The Beatles Story Museum. Your next stop is 9 Madryn Street, the childhood home of Ringo Starr. Not forgetting the iconic Penny Lane and a visit to the Lennon and McCartney Houses and iconic Strawberry Fields. Finish your walk with a photograph of the group sculpture of the Beatles.


The Cavern Club

Start your journey with a visit to Liverpool's main club on Mathew Street and once a favourite venue for the Beatles: according to resident DJ Bob Wooler, the Beatles have performed 292 times. Since their last concert the club changed hands several times and in 1973 it was demolished because of the construction of a new subway line. It took years to rebuild, and bricks from the original building were used to create an exact replica. The club reopened to the public in 1984 and since then has attracted many fans of the band and music lovers from all over the world. Visitors are welcomed by a sculpture of Lennon leaning against the wall at the entrance, and inside it is always possible to catch a performance by a tribute band. The Cavern is now a network of club, pub, shopping centre and hotel venues.

The Grapes

Next, head to Matthew Street for a visit to the legendary pub where the Beatles used to relax between gigs at The Cavern Club. Other famous Liverpool bands also stopped by here: Gerry & The Pacemakers, The Big Three, The Searchers and The Swinging Blue Jeans. Today, the pub's interior showcases a variety of items related to the work of the mercibit musicians. At The Grapes Pub you can listen to live music, sing karaoke or play a vinyl record in the jukebox, all proceeds from which go to the local homeless charity.

The Beatles Story

Afterwards, explore the world's largest permanent exhibition on the history of the Liverpool Four - from their humble childhood to the dizzying heights of global fame and their status as the greatest band of all time. The museum building is located in the city's main tourist attraction - Albert Dock, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The museum exhibition allows you to trace the main stages in the development of the Beatles, understand the culture created by the group and, of course, enjoy their music. The Beatles Story has an impressive collection of memorabilia such as John Lennon's glasses and Ringo Starr's drum kit, rare photographs, first guitars and stage costumes. You can even take a walk through life-size recreations of the Beatles' work, including the Casbah Club for their first gig, a performance in Hamburg or a crossing of Abbey Road.

9 Madryn Street

Your next stop will be Welsh Street, a group of late 19th-century Victorian streets built by Welsh workers for migrant workers and named after Welsh villages and landmarks. It was here at 9 Madryn Street that Ringo Starr spent his childhood. Liverpool nearly lost part of the Magnificent Four's history when the decision was made to demolish and rebuild the area, a few kilometres southeast of Albert Dock. An outraged public stood up for the legendary drummer's home and it was left untouched. Now, a stroll through the unusually quiet Welsh Street neighborhood can seem post-apocalyptic: almost all the houses are abandoned, and windows and doors are boarded up. The only signs of life are Beatles fans and the graffiti they leave behind.

Penny Lane Road Sign

What do you know about the song Penny Lane? The street name in Liverpool was the British rock band's single of the same name from their Magical Mystery Tour album. Once the terminus of the Penny Lane bus stop was the main meeting place for John, Paul and George during their school and then college years. The musicians repeatedly used its images in their lyrics, reliving memories of their teenage years in their hometown. The popularity of the Penny Lane song, though it has led to regular thefts of street signs, has made the area one of the city's main tourist attractions. It's also an easy drive from here to the home of Beatles lead guitarist George Harrison via narrow streets that can barely fit two cars. The cozy, bright red terraced building at 12 Arnold Grove is still a private residence.

Childhood Home of John Lennon

These seemingly unremarkable buildings in the suburbs of Liverpool are managed by the National Trust, a charitable and membership organisation for heritage conservation in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. John Lennon spent his childhood and teenage years in the house at number 251 Menlove Avenue, also known as Mendips. In contrast to the classic 1930s pattern of construction, the McCartney house at 20 Fortlin Road is an austere building with a brick façade, typical of post-war civilian architecture. A 2.5 hour tour from the National Trust is the only opportunity to see the houses from the inside. The atmosphere of the musicians' family and school life has been painstakingly recreated from the accounts of tenants and neighbours: John's cramped bedroom, Paul's cosy living room and other secluded nooks where they rehearsed and wrote their first songs.

Strawberry Fields

Liverpool was an inexhaustible source of inspiration for the Beatles: the former Salvation Army Strawberry Fields orphanage is another example of this. After the release of Strawberry Fields Forever, Beatle lovers flocked in droves to the orphanage's red metal gates, now decorated with all kinds of graffiti and drawings. They were even stolen once. In 2019, this iconic place, immortalised by John Lennon in the band's international hit, has been transformed into an interactive exhibition with a café, shop and quiet gardens. What's more, it is home to Steps to Work, a charity that helps with training and employment for young people in difficult circumstances.

The Beatles Statue

Completing your walk will be a cherished photo with the iconic monument to the British rock band. A sculpture of Paul, George, Ringo and John by artist Andy Edwards appeared in Liverpool in 2015. The bronze statues of the musicians, totalling 1.2 tonnes, were donated to the city by the Cavern Club. The idea for the sculpture was inspired by a 1963 photo shoot and belongs to Chris Butler, managing director of Castle Fine Art Foundry. The monument was unveiled 50 years after the Beatles' last concert in Merseyside: they performed in their hometown at the Empire Theatre on December 5, 1965.