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Weston-Super-Mare
Royal Pier Hotel
22-27 July 1963

by
Terminus J Threnody

Concert Poster

From the BBC website:

The Beatles performed a week of concerts at the Odeon Cinema in Weston-super-Mare between Monday 22 to Saturday 27 July 1963. They also made some unreleased recordings with Gerry Marsden of Gerry and the Pacemakers at the Royal Pier Hotel. Jenny Ponsillo from Walton near Street was 16 at the time: "Helen Shapiro was top of the bill and the Beatles were the supporting act - we loved them! My friend and I sat in the front row, yards away from Paul McCartney. I fell in love with him then and still have a soft spot for him after forty years. We then saw them in Bristol in the Colston Hall in 1964 - they had become famous by then and the hall was full of screaming teenagers including me."

On the Saturday, photographer Dezo Hoffman filmed the Beatles at Weston beach, on go-carts and fooling around during photo shoots.

1 Kings, 17(4:43)
1 Kings, 18 (2:42)
Psalm 23 (1:13)
Psalm 24 (1:15)
"Out In The Street" (8:34)

WBC63-40
Source: Alf Together Now [Spank Records 2001]

These recordings were given to the Beatlesí chauffeur, Alf Bicknell, by John Lennon while he cleaned out their car. Purportedly stored in a Garage, (thus known as the Garage Tapes,) this reel was part of the Alf Bicknell collection sold at a Sotheby"s auction. Gerry Marsden of Gerry & The Pacemakers fame, John and George record themselves in a hotel room with a portable tape recorder of poor quality sound. Reading psalms from the Bible, "The Lord Is My Shepherd" and "There"s A Green Hill Far Away" are both sung.

"We had a gear time with the recorder for a few weeks ago, when we were with Gerry and the Pacemakers at Weston-Super-Mare. We were in a car and Gerry was wearing a big hat and dark glasses, asking people the way to the local golf course. We got some dead funny replies. Just like "Candid Camera" it was, only in sound!" [George Harrison, New Musical Express.]

22-27 July 1963 - Royal Pier Hotel, Weston-Super-Mare + Brean Down beach

"Visiting from London, Dezo Hoffman spent one of these six days with the Beatles, taking photographs and colour (mute) 8mm home-movies of the group at their hotel and on location on the beach at nearby Brean Down, where they dressed in Victorian bathing-costumes and also went go-karting" [Lewisohn, The Complete Beatles Chronicle, p. 117].

Winn concludes that the day at the beach was on the 27th [Way Beyond Compare, p. 67].


Dezo Hoffman Photo and Movie Gallery

PicLens enabled


Some of these images are clickable for a bigger picture (opens in new window)


Don't Ever Change


stopping for gas


Silent movie footage

The Beatles took turns filming

Also after these photos, the Beatles returned to the hotel to shoot a series of photos to advertise Ty-Phoo tea. Now dressed in suits, each Beatle is seen attempting to spell out the letters of the product's name, and jumping from a staircase railing [Winn, Way Beyond Compare, p. 68]



Local photographer G.D. Smith Photos

G.D.Smith

G.D.Smith

G.D.Smith

G.D.Smith


Unknown photographer, published in 2008

Tony Barrow

Tony Barrow

Tony Barrow

Tony Barrow