Imagine all the people visiting The Beatles attractions in Liverpool
More Beatles Memories Emerge In Liverpool


Memories of The Beatles in all their musical genius are well served by the “The Beatles Story,” the definitive museum devoted to the Fab Four in Liverpool. But there is another Beatles-based attraction in Liverpool that is also gaining visibility and accolades. Strawberry Field – yes, that Strawberry Field – was recently named as the Small Visitor Attraction of the Year at the Liverpool City Region Tourism Awards.

The fenced patch of trees and flowers in suburban Liverpool that attracted John Lennon when he was a child — and ultimately inspired the song “Strawberry Fields Forever” — now has a visitor centre dedicated to memories of the Beatles. Strawberry Field opened to the public in 2019 in a new building, but was closed during the pandemic and then reopened in 2022.

“Strawberry Field has made a good recovery and we are cementing ourselves as part of the tourist offer outside the city,” said Sue Harvey, the commercial manager at Strawberry Field. “Strawberry Field is becoming a destination,” she said, noting that the numbers of both FITs and groups have continued to rise. 

John Lennon had a childhood connection to this quiet corner of Liverpool. During his early years, Strawberry Field was occupied by a Salvation Army home for orphaned children. Lennon had lived nearby, so he and his friends would play in the wooded field behind the home, and also attended a summertime garden party that featured a Salvation Army brass band. The song thus conveys a dreamy nostalgia before world mega-fame for the Beatles. It became one of the band’s best-loved tunes, while the actual Strawberry Field sat in overgrown disuse behind red gates for many years.

That Salvation Army home is long gone, replaced by the low, modern building that houses more memorabilia about the Beatles in an interactive visitor exhibition, with an emphasis on John and his connection to the location. The collection is relatively small compared to The Beatles Story, but is also guided by an informative headset audio tour.

There are for instance, photos of a very young Lennon with his first band The Quarrymen, taken by Lennon’s father. Entry to a cafe, souvenir shop and gardens is free, while tickets to the visitor experience should be booked in advance.

Strawberry Field also maintains the Salvation Army mission of aiding youth with learning difficulties by giving them sustainable employment opportunities. The new hub offers training, skills and work placements with real employment prospects, says the Strawberry Field website.

Meanwhile, The Beatles Story museum, located on the Liverpool waterfront on the River Mersey, remains the most comprehensive and entertaining Beatles history collection and experience anywhere.

It has been designed chronologically, so that visitors are introduced to band mates John, Paul, George and Ringo in their early years, when their reputation as a well-honed bar band was mostly limited to Liverpool. Guided by a headset audio tour, visitors hear the story of the Beatles’ rise to prominence first in the UK, then in North America and the rest of the world over about ten dizzying years.

The audio tour is supported by numerous items of memorabilia, ranging from guitars and drum kits to rare album sleeves and photos, and even original handwritten lyrics. There are key location reproductions, such as the interiors of Abbey Road Studios and the Cavern Club in Liverpool, where the Beatles legend first started taking shape.

This year, a new exhibition has opened, called the “The Beatles in the USA,” which “captures the beginning of a new era in American culture as the British invasion began, and Beatlemania was born.” It includes a recreation of the CBS Television studio used to film the Beatles appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show.

RIT Vacations (Royal Irish Tours) features a visit to Liverpool and The Beatles Story museum on their England & Wales Classic program. RIT’s contracted guide, Charlie Martin, is the only official Liverpool guide with a Masters degree in the Beatles.

Strawberry Field is not currently included in RIT programs this year, but some departures would go by there briefly if time permits, says Jonathan Sargeant, director of sales for the company.

“For FITs, it’s an easy place to visit and very popular with guests doing driving and chauffeur drive trips,” he said.

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