A hard day’s night but well worth the effort

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IT WAS a hard day’s night and they worked like a dog.

But for the dozens of selfless volunteers who were at the White Rock Theatre on Sunday, the 14th annual Bealtes Day was another testament to the amazing generosity and good nature of our townsfolk.

Despite the bright Spring sunshine, hundreds of Beatles fans poured into the venue to take part in the unique 11-hour tribute to the Fab Four.

The music started at midday and ran right through to 11pm with a rousing version of Hey Jude featuring several volunteers and chief organiser

Pete Prescott.

And in the month when Hastings submits its bid to be crowned UK Capital of Culture in 2017, Pete was among the first to trumpet the cause.

“There is no town like it England,” he said. “For a town our size to produce events like this and so many wonderful musicians there really is nothing like

it elsewhere. There’s always a buzz about the town.”

Around 1,300 tickets were sold on the day creating £16,700 for the Macmillan Cancer Support charity in East Sussex.

Since launching in 2000 the event has raised more than £118,000

Up to 65 acts played in two venues, the main auditorium and the Sussex Hall downstairs.

Among those taking to the stage were the Brighton-based Starrlite Beatles who wowed onlookers on Saturday with an open air gig on top of the White Rock

Hotel. They were trying to recreate the legendary performance by the Beatles on top of the Apple Corps HQ in New York in January 1969.

Drummer George Searle said: “It was a bit chilly up there but good fun and a great way to start the weekend. The sun came out just as I sang Octopus’s Garden which is my favourite.

“We loved every minute of being here. It was a great audience and a fantastic atmosphere. We are all only in our 20s but love playing and promoting the Beatles work.”

And there were a lucky few who managed to play alongside John Lennon and George Harrison who brought their talents to the main stage.

Andy Newmark drummed on Lennon’s Double Fantasy album released in 1980 and Harrison’s Dark Horse album in 1974. He also drummed on Yoko Ono’s album

Season of Glass in 1981.

Pete added: “It was fantastic to have Andy there. It added a real authentic link to the day.

“We didn’t publicise it as we didn’t want him having to face too many questions during the day.

“But the whole experience was amazing. It was the most successful and enjoyable Beatles Day we have run to date.

“There are so many bands like this in Hastings and we have the most amazing music and arts scene here.

“It is a real challege to put on as we start planning in September and have lots of committee meetings.

“And everyone gives up their time to put the event on none of the of acts are paid.

“I can’t thank everyone enough for their efforts. I am already planning ahead for the 15th Beatles Day which will have to go a long way to beat this one.”