Cilla honours 'fifth Beatle' Brian
Cilla Black has honoured "fifth Beatle" Brian Epstein - the man who set her on the path to fame.
Former chart star turned TV host Cilla unveiled a plaque to mark the location of her former manager's London office in Covent Garden.
Epstein, who guided the career of the Beatles until his death in 1967, ran his NEMS company from 13 Monmouth Street, Seven Dials, after relocating from Liverpool in 1963.
The impresario was behind a number of acts, including Gerry And The Pacemakers, and guided Cilla's career after she was introduced to him by John Lennon. The London office was also for many years the base for the Beatles fan club.
Cilla said today: "He was a great man, the man that I knew - he was a true gentleman.
"He believed in me and I certainly believed in him. If he had said 'you can climb Mount Everest', I would have said 'where's my backpack? I'm off'. I really would, because I believed in him."
As she unveiled the plaque, the former Blind Date presenter said she had longed to see his contribution recognised.
"I wrote to Paul McCartney a couple of years ago because I think Brian should be honoured in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in America. That's what I want," she added.
Epstein, who died at the age of 32 following an accidental overdose of sleeping pills, was godfather to Lennon and his first wife Cynthia's son Julian.
Cynthia Lennon said:" He was instrumental in changing all our lives with his vision, generosity and dedication. Brian was truly the fifth Beatle and godfather to my/our son Julian, and a real friend during the heady, frenzied years of the sixties."