Beatles poster artist Tony Booth dies aged 83

image captionTony Booth was hired by Beatles manager Brian Epstein in the early 60s and hand-painted posters for the band's shows

The artist who created posters for The Beatles in Liverpool in the early 1960s has died aged 83.

Tony Booth, from Moreton, Wirral, made the iconic signs for the Fab Four and other Merseybeat bands in the 1960s.

He died on Wednesday at Wirral's Arrowe Park Hospital after a battle with cancer, his son Lee Booth said.

In recent years, Mr Booth made replicas of the posters for fans and had written a book about them which his son hopes will be "part of his legacy".

image captionWhen the Beatles began to play at clubs in Merseyside, fans found out about their gigs through Tony Booth's posters

Mr Booth was hired by Beatles manager Brian Epstein and started off making "a few posters and show cards for his shops" before moving on to hand-painted concert posters.

In the days before the internet, the posters were the main way of telling fans of upcoming gigs.

image copyrightTony Booth
image captionA year after the Beatles formed in 1960, they were playing at the Cavern in summer 1961 although they were bottom billing
image copyrightTony Booth
image captionBy 1962, The Beatles - with original drummer Pete Best - were topping the bill at the Cavern

Though few of the originals survived, one from 1962 advertising a night with Little Richard and The Beatles in The Tower Ballroom in New Brighton was uncovered during the refurbishment of Bidston train station in 2013.

It is now displayed in the Merseybeat room of The Beatles Story museum in Liverpool's Albert Dock.

In August last year, Mr Booth staged his first exhibition at View Two Gallery on Mathew Street after reproducing 40 of his favourite posters with the same materials he used more than 50 years ago.

One of Mr Booth's last projects was to produce posters for The Cavern club's 60th anniversary celebrations this weekend, which his son said was fitting as "one of the earliest posters" had been for its opening.

"He started his career with The Cavern club and finished his career with The Cavern club", he said.

"I've had posters around me all my life, they're part of Liverpool's history".

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