Site That Inspired Beatles' 'Strawberry Fields' Opens As Tourist Attraction

Liverpool Prepares For City Of Culture 2008

Liverpool Prepares For City Of Culture 2008

The Salvation Army gardens that were immortalized in The Beatles' 1967 song "Strawberry Fields Forever" are opening as a tourist attraction for the first time.

The Liverpool site will open its gates on Saturday (September 14) with a visitor's center, cafe, and shop. The center will also host an exhibition on John Lennon's early life and provide training for youth with learning disabilities. Lennon had a special place in his heart for the gardens and reportedly "found sanctuary" there in his youth. The grounds became a landmark for fans after the song came out, and an estimated 60,000 visit the site annually; however, they were only able to peer through the gates until now.

Lennon's sister Julia Baird told BBC that her brother used to climb up the wall to get to his "special place" as a kid.

“As children we all have somewhere that’s a bit ours, a bit special,” she said, adding that she thinks "[John] would have loved it, because he himself was not mainstream and was very aware of it.”

:“John Lennon found sanctuary here as a child and that’s exactly what we want to offer by opening the Strawberry Field gates for good,” the Salvation Army’s Anthony Cotterill added.

Revisit the "Strawberry Fields Forever" video below.

Photo: Getty Images

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