Academics gather for anniversary Beatles conference at Loughborough University
The screams of besotted women fainting at the sight of the Fab Four may be long gone but Beatlemania is set to hit the county again tomorrow.
Fifty years to the day since The Beatles' debut single, Love Me Do, was first released, it will be the turn of academics to preach their love for the Liverpool group at Loughborough University.
Hundreds of leading historians, social scientists and cultural critics, some of whom remember seeing the band in their heyday, will examine their worldwide appeal at a special conference.
It will examine everything from the band's impact on the 1960s and subsequent influence on culture, society and politics, to a note by note analysis of the song which propelled them into the limelight.
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It even looks at new evidence for the real reasons original drummer Pete Best was sacked.
Beatles fan and conference organiser Dr Marcus Collins, a lecturer in modern British history at the university, said: "We may have the stars of the X-factor today, but the likes of The Beatles had never been seen before and what set them aside, and still does, was their ability to write their own material.
"Their lyrics caught the imagination of the time and propelled them against the Establishment. Britain became a swinging place and The Beatles were the epitome of a new modernity where you didn't doff your cap to your elders any more.
"They spoke right to the next generation – something the governments of the day tried to capitalise on, although the Beatles were hostile to both camps."
Dr Collins said that it was impossible to understand the '60s without understanding The Beatles and vice versa.
He said: "The Beatles' on-going resonance was seen at this year's Olympics where Hey Jude, Because, Here Comes the Sun, I am the Walrus, and John Lennon's Imagine captured everything that was quintessentially British."
The Fab Four – John, Paul George and Ringo – played De Montfort Hall, in Leicester, on December 1, 1963, and October 12, 1964. That night in Leicester is still remembered by many music-lovers in the county.
Beatles fan Sue Williams was just 16 when she queued overnight at Leicester Town Hall for tickets to the October concert.
"What I remember is getting to the Town Hall on Saturday night and the queue snaked all the way round Town Hall square," said Sue, of Whitwick.
"We stayed up all night, bought the tickets and I went with my old school friend, Justine, to see them.
"I couldn't tell you what they played. I don't think I heard a note. It was pandemonium, girls just creaming and screaming and fainting and being carried out.
"I remember the De Montfort Hall had rows of small steel fold-away chairs with canvas seats. People kept trying to stand on them – and then falling through the canvas, breaking the seats. My abiding memory is the noise and the screaming – and all these broken seats everywhere."
The conference takes place on tomorrow and Friday, however it is only for academics and not a public event.