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20 October 2020

Letter Written By Beatles Manager Sacking Former Drummer To Be Auctioned

Beatles Letter Auction pete best
Keystone Press/Alamy Stock Photo
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A letter written by The Beatles’ manager, Brian Epstein, following the sacking of the band’s original drummer, Pete Best, is to be sold at auction.

Pete Best, who had originally performed alongside John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison, was replaced in 1962 by Ringo Starr.

The letter was written by Epstein and sent to Joe Flannery, the band’s booking manager from 1962-63 who has often been labelled “the secret Beatle” and who was a childhood friend of Epstein’s. Flannery died in 2019,aged 87, and the family have now put the letter up for auction.

Sent on 8th September 1962, it reads “I read from the Mersey Beat Pete Best has now joined THE ALL STARS and I though [sic] I’d let you know that I have sent today, to him a certificate of release from his obligations under contract to myself.

“I would like to add, incidentally, our sincere wishes for Pete’s and the group’s continued success.”

Epstein had told Pete Best that he had to leave the band three weeks prior to the date of the letter. The letter was kept by Joe Flannery’s family and is now being sold by his nephew.

The auction for the letter will take place on 27th October, via Omega Auctions. It is estimated that the letter will fetch between £650 and £1,000.

Other items up for sale from the collection include notes from Sir Paul McCartney to Joe Flannery following the band’s break-up.

Auctioneer Paul Fairweather told BBC News that, “From 1959 onwards, Joe was a close friend and associate of The Beatles and played a major part in guiding them to their meteoric rise to success in 1963.

“It is on record that they all felt bad when Pete was ousted so I am sure it was pleasing for them to see he had joined a new band.”

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