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Tuesday, January 17, 1967

The Daily Mail publishes articles which inspire “A Day In The Life”

Last updated on March 1, 2024

In the January 17, 1967, edition of The Daily Mail, John Lennon found inspiration to write “A Day In The Life.” The first story was about Tara Browne, an Irish socialite from London, and friend of The Beatles, who died in a car accident on December 18, 1966. The second story was about Blackburn, Lancashire, which reported that there were 4,000 holes in the roads. The line about the holes was used directly in the lyrics of the song.

The recording of “A Day In The Life” started on January 19, 1967, only two days after the publication of The Daily Mail.

I was writing ‘A Day In The Life’ with the Daily Mail propped in front of me on the piano. I had it open at their News in Brief, or Far and Near, whatever they call it. I noticed two stories. One was about the Guinness heir who killed himself in a car. That was the main headline story. He died in London in a car crash.

John Lennon – From “The Beatles Anthology” book, 2000

On the next page was a story about 4,000 potholes in the streets of Blackburn, Lancashire. There was still one word missing in that verse when we came to record. I knew the line had to go: ‘Now they know how many holes it takes to — something – the Albert Hall.’ It was a nonsense verse, really, but for some reason I couldn’t think of the verb. What did the holes do to the Albert Hall? It was Terry [Doran] who said ‘fill’ the Albert Hall. And that was it. Perhaps I was looking for that word all the time, but couldn’t put my tongue on it. Other people don’t necessarily give you a word or a line, they just throw in the word you’re looking for anyway.

John Lennon – From “The Beatles Anthology” book, 2000

The holes in our roads

There are 4,000 holes in the road in Blackburn, Lancashire, or one twenty-sixth of a hole per person, according to a council survey. If Blackburn is typical there are two million holes in Britain’s roads and 300,000 in London

From Daily Mail – January 17, 1967
From Continuation of work on the song Penny Lane – The Beatles History (beatles-chronology.ru)

Tara’s mother gets custody

THE two children of 21-year-old Guinness heir Tara Browne are to be brought up by their grandmother. This was ordered by Mr. Justice Cross in the High Court yesterday. He turned down a plea by the children’s mother, Mrs. Nicki Browne, 24, that she should have care and control of Dorian, 3, and Julian, 21 months, whose father was killed in a car crash before Christmas.

Tara’s mother, Oonagh Lady Oranmore and Browne, lives in Eire.

The judge ordered that they should remain wards of court and stay with their grandmother. But, he said, “every effort” should be made to enable their mother to play an increasing part in their lives.

From The Daily Mirror – January 17, 1967
From The Daily Mirror – January 17, 1967

Going further

The Beatles Diary Volume 1: The Beatles Years

"With greatly expanded text, this is the most revealing and frank personal 30-year chronicle of the group ever written. Insider Barry Miles covers the Beatles story from childhood to the break-up of the group."

We owe a lot to Barry Miles for the creation of those pages, but you really have to buy this book to get all the details - a day to day chronology of what happened to the four Beatles during the Beatles years!

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