It was 50 years ago today…

As part of Liverpool’s 50 Summers of Love season, Liverpool Central Library presents an author event that all Beatles fans will love.

Taking place on the fourth floor on Sunday 2 July from 1.45pm to 5pm, American author Kenneth Womack and local author Stephen Goddard share passages from their books and an explore what the musical work of the Beatles personally meant to them, the impact of the 1967 Summer of Love and the effect the music has had on their own lives and creative writing processes.

Free tickets are available from and the afternoon runs as follows:

1.45pm – Kenneth Womack “It Was 50 Years Ago Today: The Beatles During and After the ‘Summer of Love”

In this multimedia presentation, Ken Womack traces the band’s creative and personal reactions to the international onslaught associated with Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and the Summer of Love.’


2.45pm – Stephen Goddard, ‘Whatever Happened to Billy Shears?’ :an exploration of the novel.

After we’d followed her down to the bridge by the fountain, what happened to Lucy? Did Billy Shears get over his nerves and sing to audiences far and wide? And what about the Hendersons, Mr Kite and of course, Henry the horse?

Beginning in the present day with a fatal car accident: a crowd gathers and gawps at a ‘face they’ve seen before’. The novel then charts events leading up to the crash with Canon William Shearwater, a minor sports journalist and ordained minister in the Church of England, reminiscing about his first love, one Lucy Pitcher. He doesn’t believe in that well-worn myth about the 1960s. He was there and remembers them all too well, especially the way the lovely Lucy turned his quiet suburban world upside down with one handstand.

As he secretly confesses all to his computer, English teacher Sophie Daggert is documenting her slow recovery from bereavement. Adopted at birth, she embarks on a search for her natural parents. A series of twists and turns bring Sophie and ‘Shears’ together in a shocking journey of self-discovery. A tragicomedy, in the footsteps of novelists like David Lodge, Willie Russell and Nick Hornby, Whatever Happened to Billy Shears? attempts to open up a conversation about the 1960s and its disputed legacy, asking questions about changing social mores and beliefs.


3.45pm – “Maximum Volume: Producing the Beatles with Sir George Martin”

Maximum Volume offers a glimpse into the mind, the music, and the man behind the sound of the Beatles. George Martin’s working-class childhood and musical influences which profoundly shaped his early career in the BBC’s Classical Music department and as head of the EMI Group’s Parlophone Records. Out of them flowed the genius behind his seven years producing the Beatles’ incredible body of work, including such albums as Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and Abbey Road. In this multimedia presentation, Ken Womack discusses Beatles producer George Martin’s signal role in defining the band’s artistic direction and its culmination with Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and the Summer of Love.’


Liverpool Waterfront