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Honoring John Lennon’s Legacy

Liverpool’s historic Strawberry Field has a new attraction! The Strawberry Field Forever Bandstand officially opened on May 2, 2023. The bandstand was donated by Cliff Cooper, the CEO of Orange Amplification and an Honorary Patron of the Strawberry Field center.

The bandstand is located in the original Strawberry Field garden, where as a child, John Lennon would jump over the wall to listen to the Salvation Army band play. The iconic song ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ was inspired by Lennon’s memories of this place and was featured on a double A-side single with ‘Penny Lane.’

The Strawberry Field Forever Bandstand is a technological marvel with state-of-the-art lighting and sound equipment, along with facilities for broadcasting, multi-track recording, streaming, and full internet use. Visitors can also enjoy performances through wireless headphones with Bluetooth technology.

The idea and design of the bandstand was conceived by Mick Dines and is based on the drum featured on the cover of the Sgt. Pepper album sleeve, and the interior features artwork by famous Paintpop artist James Wilkinson. The bandstand floor features a black and white mosaic made from more than 390,000 pieces of marble specially imported from the USA and carefully handcrafted for the floor of the bandstand. The mosaic is similar to the John Lennon Imagine memorial laid in Strawberry Fields, Central Park, New York, but three times larger.

The Strawberry Field center, now run by the Salvation Army, has been a hub for youth programs since the 1930s. The new bandstand will help support the Salvation Army’s ‘Steps at Strawberry Field,’ which provides employment skills training and work placements for adults with learning difficulties and other barriers to employment. All the money raised from events at the bandstand will go to support this program.

At the opening ceremony, Cooper was joined by dignitaries including the Vice Lord Lieutenant of Merseyside, Robert Owen, High Sheriff of Merseyside, Dr. Ruth Hussey, CB OBE, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Julia Baird (John Lennon’s sister), and Major David Taylor, the Salvation Army’s divisional leader for the North West. Ruby J, Brooke Combe, and Logan Paul Murphy also performed on stage.

The Strawberry Field Forever Bandstand is a tribute to John Lennon’s childhood memories and a nod to his lasting legacy. It’s a great addition to the Strawberry Field center and a new Liverpool attraction you won’t want to miss!