Beatles Bolthole Hits the Market


The Beatles set a record 54-year gap between No 1 singles as Now and Then tops the UK chart, becoming the fastest-selling vinyl single this century. McCartney said of the song’s chart-topping success: “It’s mind-boggling. It’s blown my socks off. It’s also a very emotional moment for me. I love it.”

Now and Then is a midtempo ballad written by John Lennon in the late 1970s, uses his original demo recording combined with guitar lines recorded by the late George Harrison in 1994, plus new parts recorded by Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr. The band extended their record as the British artist with the most No 1 singles, with Official Charts Company chief executive Martin Talbot saying: “If there were ever any doubts that the Beatles are the greatest band of all time, they have surely consigned them to history this week.”

The elegant Grade II listed freehold Georgian five-bedroom townhouse the very same bolthole that provided the Fab Four with a welcome respite from Beatlemania, and former London base of Beatles manager, “the fifth Beatle” Brian Epstein, hits the market.

Epstein acquired the Charles Street Mayfair townhouse, initially as his home and allowed the band to use Charles Street’s adjoining mews house as an under-the-radar “Beatles bolthole”. The Beatles mews house, linked to the main home via the basement also has its own discreet entrance on Hay’s Mews, providing the Fab Four with an escape route if fans assembled on Charles Street. It is in the mews house that the Fab Four socialised and are believed to have worked on lyrics for the seminal 1967 album Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and where they were famously photographed together in a bathtub that stood in the middle of the mews house’s sitting room for a publicity stunt. John Lennon painted graffiti onto the tiles in the kitchen of the main home, which were sadly ripped out at a later date and sold at auction.

In 1963, Epstein acquired an apartment in Knightsbridge, moving in 1965 to a house in Belgravia, which allowed him to use the Charles Street townhouse as his business base where he developed an early incarnation of the now iconic Apple Corps, set up to protect the band’s business interests and reduce their tax burden. Paul McCartney himself explained his lyrics for ‘Fixing a Hole’ on Sgt Pepper’s, their eighth studio album, were about the fans that would hang around the doors of his and his band members’ homes day and night: “See the people standing there/ They worry me, and never win/ And wonder why they don’t get in my door.”

Originally built in the 1750s, during the 1960s, elegant Grade II listed Georgian townhouse features four-reception rooms, seven-bathrooms, five-bedrooms and served as first a home and then offices for Brian Epstein, who was instrumental in the Beatles’ global rise to fame, serving as the band’s manager from 1961 until his accidental death in 1967. Thereafter, Charles Street’s new owner became Conservative politician and author Norman St John-Stevas, Lord St John of Fawsley.

After being sold off separately some years ago, the Fab Four’s mews house was bought back by Charles Street’s present owner, uniting the property as a whole again. Accessible via the main home’s lower ground floor or from its own private entrance on Hay’s Mews, the famous ‘Beatles mews’ is perfect for housing extended family members, friends or staff, with a stylish reception space, kitchen and large ensuite bedroom.

The Charles Street townhouse and mews is available for sale freehold for £8,750,000.


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