Paul McCartney visits The Liverpool Art College

Thursday, May 31, 2012

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On this day, Paul McCartney visited The Liverpool Art College, which had recently been acquired by LIPA.

From Liverpool Echo, March 26, 2012:

SIR Paul McCartney’s fame school has stepped in to rescue John Lennon’s world-famous art college from being turned into apartments.

Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (Lipa) has struck a £3.7m deal to buy 68 Hope Street – the Grade II-listed former art college building next door which famously houses the lecture hall where Lennon met his first wife, Cynthia.

Dating back to the 1880s, the building was destined to be turned into luxury flats as part of a controversial £100m Maghull Developments proposal to redevelop Liverpool’s historic Hope Street.

But now the building, where art student Lennon met best friend and original Beatles bassist Stuart Sutcliffe in the 1950s, will be retained for education, thanks to the intervention of Macca’s Lipa.

Sir Paul is fully behind the development.

Lipa, which opened in 1995, is housed in Sir Paul and George Harrison’s old grammar school, the Liverpool Institute for Boys.

Speaking exclusively to the ECHO, principal and chief executive Mark Featherstone-Witty – who co-founded Lipa with patron Sir Paul – said there were sound business reasons behind the deal, beyond the “romance” of bringing two Beatles-linked buildings together.

He said the multi-storey Georgian Quarter venue provided more than 5,000 sq m of extra space, which would secure Lipa’s future growth and keep it “at the forefront of performing arts institutions”.

He added: “There are sound business reasons why we are buying the building next door, but there is no denying the romance of bringing together two buildings where three Beatles once did their learning.

“I am glad this historic building will not become yet another boutique hotel or, yet again, be turned into flats.

“It will be used for what it was intended – learning.

“I have mentioned this to Paul, who is supportive.” […]

Last updated on March 5, 2021


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