Entertainment & Arts

Beatles unseen photos to be sold

Auctioneer with Beatles images
Image caption The pictures were held in a family album by Mr Allchorne who never considered them valuable

Unseen photos of the Beatles are to go up for sale after lying in a family album for almost half a century.

The 20 black-and-white images show the band as they made their first film, A Hard Day's Night, in March 1964 at the Scala Theatre in London.

Taking pictures on the closed set was banned, but Pinewood Studios props manager Peter Allchorne went about taking snaps unhindered.

Mr Allchorne put the images in a family album where they have stayed until now.

The 87-year-old from Preston, Lancashire is putting his pictures up for sale at Omega Auctions in Stockport, Cheshire on 19 May.

Image caption The misspelling on the menu card is expected to make it of particular interest

The photos show the band with their instruments, but also between takes in off-guard moments, with one picture of Ringo Starr resting on bricks to boost his height for the cameras.

Mr Allchorne's daughter Jacqueline Griffin said her father was largely unaware of the growing fuss surrounding the Beatles and thought of them as just another band he had got to know through his work.

"It was not unusual for him to be on set and taking pictures. He wanted to take pictures of one of the crew, a mate Alfie, and they were there, it was when the Beatles were on stage," she said.

"He got to know them quite well but he was just not that interested. I think they just larked about and had a good time.

"He was not particularly star-struck, they were just four lads in a band, it didn't really hit him.

"He's never held any value on them because he was not into the Beatles, he was just working on the films.

"He doesn't have any sentimental attachment. They're just dad's pictures. He didn't like the music, he was into jazz."

A menu card - signed by the four Beatles - from the band's trip aboard the BOAC Cunard, London to New York flight, will also go under the hammer at the sale.

Image caption The image collection is expected to sell for a total of £10,000

They were given a choice of fine wines from the vineyards of Bordeaux, Champagne and clear turtle soup amontillado.

They were en route to the Bahamas, along with Mr Allchorne, for the filming of Help! in February 1965.

A second unsigned menu card from their return flight features the misspelling "Beattles", making it a novelty expected to attract extra interest from bidders.

Mr Allchorne's photos of the Beatles on their Bahamas trip have been lost forever because his camera was stolen from the beach.

The remaining photos taken in London, along with the original negatives, have been given an estimate of £2,000. The entire lot has an estimate of £10,000.

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