Belfast Telegraph

John Lennon’s round sunglasses and Ringo’s parking ticket up for auction

Driver Alan Herring said it was ’emotional’ to sell the memorabilia.

Yoko Ono and John Lennon (PA)
Yoko Ono and John Lennon (PA)

By Sherna Noah, PA Senior Entertainment Correspondent

John Lennon’s round sunglasses and a parking ticket issued to Ringo Starr are going under the hammer.

Alan Herring, who was the driver for some of the Beatles, has made the “emotional” decision to sell the objects, saying he can still treasure the “memories”.

Mr Herring, who worked for Starr and George Harrison, kept the £2 parking ticket after it was issued on April 25 1969 outside Apple records in Savile Row.

He said he usually managed to have a good relationship with the traffic wardens, but not on this occasion, and the brown, creased ticket, to be sold alongside other items, is expected to fetch £1,500.

A cigarette lighter kept in the car, “a special one for if the Beatles wanted to light a fag, or whatever it was they wanted to light”, is also going under the hammer, Sotheby’s books and manuscripts specialist Gabriel Heaton said.

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John Lennon’s round sunglasses are up for auction (PA)

Lennon told the driver to keep his sunglasses after leaving them on the back seat of Starr’s Mercedes in 1968.

Mr Heaton said the “rather humble sunglasses are so representative of the cultural moment”.

“They are such an integral part of John Lennon’s image right from the mid-60s to his death,” he told the PA news agency.

“He goes through so many fashion changes but the one constant is the sunglasses – if you want to draw a caricature of John Lennon, it’s the long hair and the sunglasses.”

Mr Herring was a driver for Starr and Harrison in the late ’60s, “part of the inner circle right through The White Album, Abbey Road and when the band were breaking up”, Mr Heaton said.

The driver said he had picked up Lennon, Starr and Harrison and had “driven the boys into the office”.

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A parking ticket issued to Ringo Starr (Sotheby’s)

“When John got out of the car I noticed that he’d left these sunglasses on the back seat and one lens and one arm had become disconnected.

“I asked John if he’d like me to get them fixed for him. He told me not to worry, that they were just for the look!

“He said he’d send out for some that fit. I never did get them mended I just kept them as they were, as John had left them.”

He said of his decision to sell his treasures: “The memories I have of this very special time in my life working with the Beatles are far more important to me than the things I kept which are associated with them.

“For my family’s sake it makes sense for me to say goodbye to my collection now while I can still tell all the stories behind everything.

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John Lennon’s sunglasses (Sotheby’s)

“It’s been an emotional journey for me getting to this point, but having kept all these things with me for the last 50 years, I now feel the time is right for me to part with them.”

Lennon started wearing round glasses in 1966, after he was given a pair to prepare for his role in the film How I Won The War.

The sunglasses are expected to fetch £8,000, while other objects going under the hammer include Harrison’s guitar (£60,000) and shirts worn by the band.

The Beatles online sale will run from December 6 to 13 at Sotheby’s.

PA

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