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Last Updated: Thursday, 5 May, 2005, 16:52 GMT 17:52 UK
Beatles 'split letter' auctioned
The letter documenting the break-up of The Beatles in 1969

A letter marking a key stage in the break-up of The Beatles has been sold for 48,000 at a London auction.

The 1969 letter informed Lee Eastman, Paul McCartney's then music lawyer and father-in-law, he was not authorised to represent the band as well.

It came during a row over management between McCartney and his bandmates.

McCartney wanted Eastman but the others wanted the Rolling Stones' manager. The letter was sold on Thursday to a private collector from Nottinghamshire.

'Financial chaos'

The letter was co-signed by John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr under his real name Richard Starkey.

It told Eastman he was "not authorized to act... as the attourney (sic) or legal representative of 'The Beatles' or of any of the companies which the Beatles own or control".

It followed the band's realisation that their company Apple was in financial chaos and new management was needed.

The Beatles
The Beatles officially dissolved their partnership in 1975
But while Lennon, Harrison and Starr opted for the Rolling Stones' manager Allan Klein, McCartney proposed Eastman and his son John.

The Beatles' partnership was finally dissolved in court in 1975.

Auctioneers Christie's had predicted the letter might fetch as much as 60,000 as part of a music memorabilia sale.

The auction totalled just under 500,000 including 24,000 for a guitar owned by Pete Townshend of The Who. A rare concert poster for a Who concert in New Zealand in 1968 fetched 20,400.

Lennon letter on sale for 13,350
06 Jan 05 |  Entertainment
Beatles' guitar sold for 294,000
18 Dec 04 |  Entertainment
Beatles suits sell for $110,000
23 Nov 04 |  Entertainment


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