Abandon all Hope – another fucking Tesco

You know, Tesco isn’t all bad. Well, OK it is – but a new Tesco store isn’t the end of the world.

However, a new Tesco store on Hope Street – slap bang in the middle of the ‘cultural quarter’, connecting two astonishing cathedrals, host to the iconic Philharmonic Hall, Everyman Theatre and Philharmonic pub and blessed with its own street festival – is a bloody awful prospect.

Announced at a time when the city council has somehow allowed a developer to destroy Josephine Butler House, the prospect of another sodding Tesco store blighting the otherwise-stunning thoroughfare is a depressing one.

Julian and Cynthia Lennon at press launch for White Feather: The Spirit of John Lennon

I’ve just returned from The Beatles Story’s White Feather: The Spirit of Lennon press launch at The Beatles Story Pier Head, where Julian Lennon gave the closest thing to an interview he’s provided in years.

Lennon and mother Cynthia were answering questions on the exhibition, created with mementoes and artefacts they’ve largely collected themselves over the years.

A such it’s an intriguing and invaluable insight into a man frequently described as ‘difficult’ and ‘infuriating’ – it’s hard not to come to the conclusion having read various accounts of John Lennon that these were not simply euphemism for ‘nasty piece of work’.

Of course, behind every nasty piece of work is often a rather vulnerable character, and the anecdotes and notes from the Lennons paint a portrait of John as man equally difficult and easy to love.

They go beyond what one might generally expect to see at an exhibition: beyond the Beatles memorabilia; beyond the obvious anecdotes; beyond myth and legend.