Mendips, better known as 251 Menlove Avenue, is John Lennon’s old house, bequeathed to the National Trust by Yoko Ono and restored back to its 1950’s self with period furnishings, decoration and ambiance.
As a time-capsule museum Mendips is fascinating in itself – for Beatles fans a chance to retrace the early footsteps of the legendary mop-topper. You can take a combined guided tour of Mendips and 20 Forthlin Road, where Macca grew up, for £20. Custodians of the houses live on-site and are well versed in the group’s history as well of that of the houses and the swinging 60s.
It may sound rather twee but both houses are Grade-II listed and the property of the National Trust, so there’s a ring of quality to the whole thing – unlike many other Beatles-themed attractions in Liverpool.
Guided tours are undertaken by curators who live in the house and offer tasty Beatles morsels of information about the house and young John’s formative experiences. That includes the tragic death of his mother outside the house and the period when the newlywed – and skint – John and Cynthia lived out of the back room.
Take note of the tiny porch; it’s where John and Paul McCartney first started strumming guitars together. John supposedly wrote early Beatles hit Please Please Me in his bedroom at Mendips. Look out too for a green Raleigh Lenton Mk 11 bike leaning against the wall – a replica of the bike John’s Uncle George bought him as a reward for passing his 11+ exams.
Don’t just turn up to Mendips if you want to see inside – you’ll need to pay for a prebooked minibus tour or you might be face to face with the curator who lives there finishing his or her breakfast.