Monday 19 November 2018

The day The Beatles came to Dublin - and escaped screaming Irish fans in the back of an Evening Herald van

The band's only two Irish concerts ever have been commemorated with a special plaque

Fab four: The Beatles at the Adelphi Cinema.
Fab four: The Beatles at the Adelphi Cinema.
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles (PA)
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
Fan frenzy: Outside the Adelphi.
Fans meet with their idols at the Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles commemorative plaque, Middle Abbey Street, Dublin. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Crowds gather during the unveiling ceremony of the Beatles Plaque, in Middle Abbet Street. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Members of Beatles Ireland Pete Brennan and Pat Moore hold up a framed picture of the Beatles arriving into Dublin. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Pictured unveiling the Beatles plaque are Lord Mayor of Dublin Niall Ring with broadcaster Gay Byrne. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Pictured is broadcaster Gay Byrne holding up a framed concert ticket from when the Beatles played in the Adelphi Cinema 55 years ago. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Terrie Colman Black, who was at the Beatles Concert in the Adelphi Cinema when she was aged 14 with The Lord Mayor of Dublin Nial Ring. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Pete Brennan from Beatles Ireland hold a piece of the Adelphi Cinema stage where the Beatles played. Pictured with Gay Byrne. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Pete Brennan from Beatles Ireland makes a presentation to the Lord Mayor of Dublin Nial Ring with a piece of stage from the Adelphi Cinema where the Beatles performed, watched by Gay Byrne. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Aoife Kelly

Aoife Kelly

The only two Irish concerts ever performed by The Beatles in Ireland have been commemorated with a special plaque.

Paul, John, George, and Ringo brought Beatlemania to Dublin 55 years ago today with two concerts - in just one day - at the old Adelphi Cinema on Middle Abbey Street.

The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
Fab four: The Beatles at the Adelphi Cinema.

On the night of November 7, 1963, they caused chaos in the city centre as thousands of young, screaming fans descended on the venue to catch a glimpse of their idols.

This was despite the fact that the 2,300 tickets for two capacity shows - one at 6.30pm and another at 9pm - had long sold out. 

The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema

Unfortunately, as the fans from the first show filed out of the venue on a manic high, they encountered those eagerly queuing for the second show and madness ensued.

Fifty extra gardaí were drafted in to keep order, but at least one car was overturned, a taxi driver pulled from his car, and fire engines reportedly tried to calm the manic throng by ringing their bells.

Fan frenzy: Outside the Adelphi.
Fan frenzy: Outside the Adelphi.

Following the concerts, the foursome escaped the mayhem in the back of an Evening Herald delivery van to return to their hotel, The Gresham, all but a stone throw away.

As part of Dublin City Council’s commemorative plaque initiative, Lord Mayor Niall Ring unveiled a plaque on the back wall of what is now Arnotts department store to mark the event on its 55th anniversary.

Fans meet with their idols at the Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
Fans meet with their idols at the Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema
The Beatles concert, Dublin 07/11/1963 Adelphi Cinema

Read more: Ireland always No.1 for the Fab Four

“The Beatles provided the background music to my (very early) childhood,” he said, “And their visit here allowed Dubliners to experience something of the swinging 60s in our own city.

Members of Beatles Ireland Pete Brennan and Pat Moore hold up a framed picture of the Beatles arriving into Dublin.
Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
Members of Beatles Ireland Pete Brennan and Pat Moore hold up a framed picture of the Beatles arriving into Dublin. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.

“I think it’s very fitting that this plaque is now in place to mark the spot where thousands of people stood on that famous night in 1963.”

Gay Byrne also spoke at the unveiling, revealing that Paul McCartney told him they'd love him to be their agent. "I was very complimented," he said.

The Beatles commemorative plaque, Middle Abbey Street, Dublin. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.
The Beatles commemorative plaque, Middle Abbey Street, Dublin. Picture Colm Mahady /Fennells - Copyright©Fennell Photography 2018.

Although they hailed from Liverpool, all four Beatles had Irish roots and they famously declared, on meeting press at Dublin airport upon their arrival, “We’re all Irish!”.

Éanna Brophy, who was a young journalist working with the Press at the time, and who covered the Adelphi shows said, “I knew instinctively that there was something special about these newcomers.  Little did I realise how special.”

Read more: 'Hey Jude': why Paul's crowd-pleaser is still a classic

How George Harrison - who had strong Irish connections - was far from the quiet Beatle 

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