Dovedale Primary School
Yoko Ono greets children, fans and Sure Start members during an emotional visit to John Lennon’s former school, Dovedale Junior in Liverpool, where she opened The Sure Start Children’s Centre – a new children’s and community centre.
The Sure Start Children’s Centre is a joint project between Dovedale Junior and Dovedale Infants schools – a local support base for children from birth and up to school age and their families in the community.
Yoko dances on a walking piano she has donated to the school.
The Dovedale School register – John Winston Lennon.
Mendips, 251 Menlove Avenue, Liverpool
John Lennon lived in the house with his Aunt Mimi and Uncle George from 1945-1963.
Yoko called in to the house after meeting Sure Start members at John’s old scool, Dovedale School.
John Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono, second right, meets great supporters as she visits his old house in Menlove Avenue, Liverpool, England, Friday, Sept. 3, 2010.
Yoko Ono sits in the front room of John Lennon’s former home in Mendips, in Liverpool.
Photos by Dave Thompson (PA Wire) & Tim Hales (AP)
Yoko Ono revisits John Lennon’s Liverpool childhood
Yoko Ono paid an “emotional” visit to John Lennon’s former school as part of an event to mark what would have been his forthcoming 70th birthday.
Ono met children at Dovedale School in Liverpool, where she also opened a new Sure Start children’s centre.
Later, she visited Mendips in Woolton, Lennon’s childhood home he shared with his aunt Mimi from 1945 to 1963.
She said it made her “choke up” to visit her husband’s bedroom where he dreamed as a teenager.
During his childhood in Liverpool Lennon attended both the infants and junior school at Dovedale, where a hand-writted ledger still has an entry of his name, address and date of birth.
Ono, who was given a rapturous welcome by hundreds of Dovedale pupils, looked at some of the children centre’s facilities including the walking piano she donated after seeing it in the Tom Hanks film, Big.
After the school visit she travelled to Mendips, which she bought in 2003 and donated to the National Trust so that it would be preserved.
She said: “Each time I come here I go into John’s bedroom and it really makes me choke up because to know he was actually dreaming in such a small space but dreaming of the whole world and what he was going to do – I’m sure he knew on some subconscious level.
“It’s nice for the children round here too, that they are now going to be creating the future for us.”
The legendary musician, who was shot dead outside his New York home in 1980, would have celebrated his 70th birthday on 9 October.
Ono, wearing a white trilby hat and tinted glasses, said it did not feel like 30 years since her husband’s death but instead “feels like only yesterday he was here with me”.
Imagine: John Lennon’s Woman Yoko Ono overcome with emotion as she visits the house where her late Beatle husband grew up
by Jody Thompson, Mail Online
John Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono made an emotional visit today to the Liverpool house where her late husband grew up as part of his 70th birthday commemorations.
The 77-year-old artist, musician and peace activist, looking decades younger in a black trouser suit topped off with a white trilby and her trademark dark glasses, paid homage to the Beatle at the modest Menlove Avenue semi he grew up in.
But she could hardly stop the tears flowing as she crossed the threshold where Lennon lived with his Aunt Mimi and Uncle George from 1945-1963.
Earlier, Yoko was greeted by hundreds of fans when she visited John’s old school, Dovedale Junior, to open a new children’s and community centre.
The Sure Start Children’s Centre, a joint project between Dovedale Junior and Dovedale Infants schools, is a local support base for children from birth and up to school age and their families in the community.
She was even shown an old school register to see her late husband’s name – John Winston Lennon – in all its glory.
Yoko’s Merseyside trip is just the start of a host of activity to celebrate the anniversary of the influential musician’s birth on 9 October. Lennon was shot dead by crazed fan Mark Chapman on 8 December 1980, aged just 40.
As part of the commemorations, Yoko has also announced she will be holding several events in Iceland on the day of his birthday to ‘promote peace throughout the world’.
These include illumination of the Imagine Peace Tower, built on the island of Viðey, just off the Icelandic mainland, and a Plastic Ono Band concert featuring Yoko herself.
Eight of Lennon’s albums have also been digitally remastered in time for the 70th birthday celebrations with help by Yoko to be released on 4 October.
They include his last ever original studio album, Double Fantasy, which was released just three weeks before he was murdered.
His sons Sean and Julian also pen some of the sleeve notes on the re-releases, with Sean providing the original artwork for the Double Fantasy reissue.
Yoko Ono at Dovedale School and Mendips
by Catherine Jones, Liverpool Echo (Culture Chat)
Lunch today was a biscuit and a cup of tea in the kitchen at Mendips, John Lennon’s childhood home in Woolton.
I was waiting for my turn to chat to Yoko in Aunt Mimi’s front room (the Andrew Marr show was in there ahead of me).
And since it was a beautiful day I also took a turn out in the garden with John’s cousin Michael Cadwallader.
There’s a bumper crop of apples on the trees this year, and Mike tells me they get taken up to Speke Hall and made into apple pie – so next time you order one in the cafe there you could be eating John Lennon’s bramleys!
I also had a few quiet moments to myself in John’s old bedroom.
The tour group which was in the house when Yoko arrived was a little surprised to say the least! And several people had got wind of the visit and had turned up at the gate…some from Canada, Poland and Ireland.
Earlier, she also paid a visit to Dovedale School where the kids screamed the playground down and Yoko had a look around the new Sure Start centre built on the site.
There was a “walking piano” on the floor which she gamely hopped on. Apparently if no one steps on it for a while it starts playing Imagine of its own accord.
We also had a look in the school register at John’s entry. It gives his address in 1946 as Menlove Avenue, but dad Alfred’s at Mosspits Lane in Wavertree……that year John left school at the end of May and came back in September. I wonder exactly what the hiatus was?
Anyway, it was a lovely sunny day and it all seemed to go very well.
Read more about it in tomorrow’s Echo.
Yoko Ono pays emotional visit to Beatle John Lennon’s childhood home
by Catherine Jones, Liverpool Daily Post
YOKO Ono paid an emotional visit to John Lennon’s childhood home and school on a whistlestop tour of Liverpool.
The artist was greeted by dozens of screaming children when she dropped in to Dovedale junior and infant schools, in Mossley Hill, today.
She also surprised visitors at Mendips, Lennon’s boyhood home in Menlove Avenue, by turning up at the end of their tour for a chat.
Adrian Lucyk, from Stoke-on-Trent, was visiting Liverpool with 18-year-old daughter Natasha-Tasenka and was one of those who met Yoko.
He said: “We’ve spent two days in Liverpool and had a good time, but this is the icing on the cake.”
Yoko also spoke to Beatles fans from Canada, Poland and Ireland outside.
She was at the Menlove Avenue house to pay a visit to custodian Colin Hall and catch up with John’s cousin Michael Cadwallader, who oversaw its restoration of after she bought it for the National Trust.
Earlier, she spent almost an hour at Dovedale school, where she was given a tour of a new £1m Sure Start children’s centre.
The centre, run by the council and funded by Liverpool primary care trust (PCT), is a support base for children from birth to school age and their families in the community and will offer advisory services including child welfare and family support groups and social activities.
It has a free family fun day on September 11.
Centre manager Justine Merton said: “I think it is nice to feel she values the community and it makes the community feel valued.”
Jane Noble, headteacher at Dovedale infants, added: “The children gave her a very enthusiastic welcome and I genuinely do feel she is interested in them and cares for the future.
“She talked about how they are important to the future of the world.”
The 77-year-old also saw the young John’s entry in the school records and met excited children who had gathered in the playground to see her.
She said: “It was just so emotional when I saw them out there and had that great big welcome. I did not expect it.
“This is John’s 70th birthday year and he is not here, but his spirit is still here. I am celebrating the opening of the Sure Start children’s centre and it is a nice way of celebrating John’s 70th.
“I have such an emotion for Liverpool.”
She told youngsters: “Have a long, long, beautiful life.”
To mark the former Beatle’s 70th birthday, EMI is releasing 11 remastered Lennon albums in a initiative overseen by Yoko entitled Gimme Some Truth.
Lennon still helping me, Yoko Ono says
by The Associated Press
Yoko Ono says John Lennon is still helping her in her endeavours as an artist and peace activist as she pays tribute to her late husband before what would have been his 70th birthday.
Ono visited Lennon’s childhood home and school in northern England’s Liverpool on Friday. She was welcomed by hundreds of students at Dovedale School, before she went to the semi-detached family home that Lennon shared with his aunt from 1945 to 1963.
The musician was shot outside his New York home in 1980, when he was 40 years old. He would have been 70 on Oct. 9.
Ono will travel from her home in New York to Iceland on Lennon’s birthday to light the Imagine Peace Tower, an illuminated memorial.