A ‘forgotten’ photo of The Beatles has finally been developed – 55 years after it was originally taken

The negative of the photo lay undeveloped in a drawer for over 55 years

A “forgotten” picture of The Beatles has been discovered 55 years after the original photo was taken.

As reported in Great Yarmouth Mercury, the negative of the picture, which shows The Beatles playing a gig in Great Yarmouth at the height of their fame in 1963, lay undeveloped in the home of Peter Harrison, 75, who salvaged the negative when he was working as an apprentice in a photographer’s studio. He was 17-years-old at the time.

Harrison told Great Yarmouth Mercury that his manager, Mr Fisher, had taken a number of publicity shots of the band when they came to play at the resort.

Whilst the majority of the negatives were dumped, Harrison managed to salvage one of them and intended to develop it at home. “I could do my own black and white prints at home but I never got around to it,” he told the newspaper. You can see the photograph here:

The Beatles in Great Yarmouth in 1963 – Credit: Peter Harrison, Richard Harrison  

The negative lay undeveloped in Harrison’s drawer at home until recently, after his son completed a photography course. Passing the negative to his son, Richard, it was developed and revealed The Beatles playing at the now demolished ABC Cinema in Great Yarmouth.

Speaking to NME, Peter Harrison added: “It’s caused quite a stir! I’ve had it for 55 years just at home in a drawer…My son was taking a black and white photography course and I just said to him, ‘I’ve got a negative here, you might be interested in it,’ so I sent it to him, and then everything just happened from there.

“Originally, it was going to be thrown away. The professional photographer took more than one shot [of The Beatles] for a publicity [shoot] and he just had a spare one. I just thought, ‘Oh, I’ll have that please!'”

The band played two sets at the gig, at 6pm and 8.15pm, and were supported on the bill by a number of acts including The Kestrels and The Trebletones.

Glass Onion

The Beatles in 1968

Recently, it was announced that Sir Peter Jackson has teamed up with The Beatles to create a new film documenting the band’s final days. 

Made by the band’s Apple Corps Ltd. and WingNut Films, the movie is based around 55 hours of never-released footage of the Fab Four in the studio recording final album ‘Let It Be’, shot between January 2 and January 31, 1969. It culminates with their final gig on the rooftop on their Apple HQ in London, which was filmed over 50 years ago.

“The 55 hours of never-before-seen footage and 140 hours of audio made available to us, ensures this movie will be the ultimate ‘fly on the wall’ experience that Beatles fans have long dreamt about – it’s like a time machine transports us back to 1969, and we get to sit in the studio watching these four friends make great music together,” said Lord Of The Rings director Jackson.

He continued: “I was relieved to discover the reality is very different to the myth…I’m thrilled and honoured to have been entrusted with this remarkable footage – making the movie will be a sheer joy,” he said.

The as-yet-untitled film does not currently have a release date but will be followed by the previously confirmed restored version of the original Let It Be movie directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg next year.