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Channeling Our Inner John, Paul, George, and Ringo

posted by LIM College

By Victoria DiPiazza 

The best thing to do when traveling is to find adventures of your own. While abroad in London for the CCA (Cross Cultural Analysis) trip we had some free time to ourselves one afternoon. A small group of us really wanted to see Abbey Road where the Beatles posed for their famous album cover.

What many people don’t know when visiting Abbey Road is that it still is a street that is used daily, so when people come to pose you literally have to run across the street, stop traffic, and pose quickly to get the perfect shot. It took us about six tries and we almost got hit a few times, still, it was the most exciting thing to do! 

After we took our photos we thought there must be a gift shop around or near Abbey Road Studios. We asked someone and they said we would find an old man passing out flyers about a nearby shop. So we started walking around trying to find this gift shop. Then, just like we were told, an old man popped up on the corner and gave us a flyer to a Beatles collectors shop. It was like magic that he showed up just at the right time. Then he went off in one direction and we tried to figure out how to get to the shop.

Once we found the shop, St. John’s Wood Collectables at 2 Violet Hill, London NW8 9EB, we walked into the tiny store and all of a sudden, just as we entered, the lights and Beatle’s music kicked on. It was like the shop was calling our names! Then to our surprise the old man from the street showed up from the back. It was his shop!

Unfortunately I did not get his name, but he has been collecting and selling Beatles merchandise in this shop for years. He has his own private collection of items on display as well. He told us that Ringo’s daughter lived down the street and that Paul and Ringo have stopped in multiple times before. This man was truly a super fan and the fact that he shared his collection with us and whoever else is lucky enough to come across this shop was truly an honor. For him to even meet members of the Beatle’s must be a dream come true! He was very passionate and I had a great conversation with him about his collection.

Finding this shop was definitely one of the highlights of my time in London. I grew up with an appreciation for classic rock music so this was a great find. It was something so small but so special. If you are a Beatles fan and are in London, please go visit this shop!

The best advice I could give anyone when traveling is to find adventures and things that are of interest to you. Don’t be afraid to check inside the small shop on the side of the road. You never know what you may find inside. Sometimes the smallest places that aren’t on the suggested tourist list are the best places.

Happy exploring!

021615Hello from Abbey Road.



021615_3Store front sign – located at 2 Violet Hill, London NW8 9EB

021615_4The shop owner’s private collection on display. He showed me some
pieces which were original prints and truly collectors’ items. 



021615_6Beatles Book that I bought for my dad, published in 1967.

Topics: London, study abroad