George Harrison’s Liverpool childhood home to be sold at auction
George Harrison’s childhood home, where the Beatles played early rehearsals, is to go up for auction this month with an estimated price of between £160,000 and £200,000.
The three-bedroom terraced house at 25 Upton Green in the Liverpool suburb of Speke has been renovated but still has some of the features when Harrison lived there, including the original bath, sink, and outbuildings.
The Harrison family moved there in 1949 when George was six, and stayed for 12 years. It was Harrison’s base as he made his first forays into music. Having met Paul McCartney on the bus to their school, Liverpool Institute High School for Boys, he later successfully auditioned for Lennon and McCartney’s skiffle group, the Quarrymen. Various photos depict the band, who would soon become the Beatles, at the Upton Green house.
Paul Fairweather of Merseyside firm Omega Auctions said it was “truly an honour” to be hosting the sale. “George will have learned to play the guitar in this house and the photos of the group gathering there in the early 1960s are amazing,” he said.
Viewings are by appointment in the two weeks before the 30 November auction.
Alongside various Beatles autographs, photographs and other ephemera, a more portable item of memorabilia is on offer in the same sale: a letter from manager Brian Epstein rejecting an offer from Decca Records in February 1962.
The band auditioned for the label the previous month but were rejected, with label executives reasoning that “guitar groups are on the way out” and “the Beatles have no future in showbusiness”. This letter confirms that Decca did make a subsequent offer to the band, but that it was rejected by Epstein, who claims in the letter that the band have had an offer from another label.
However, it was days later that Parlophone’s George Martin would offer the group a contract, “so Epstein’s claim of another offer of a recording contract was untrue and likely the result of a wounded pride following the initial Decca rejection”, according to the auction listing. The letter is expected to sell for between £2,000 and £4,000.