McCartney prize-winning school essay discovered

A prize-winning essay by a 10-year-old Paul McCartney sheds new light on the thoughts of a budding superstar, an author claimed today.

The handwritten piece about the Queen's coronation was found among records at the Central Library by Kevin Roach as he researched for a book on the Beatles legend.

It had been stored away for over 50 years in the library's record office.

Mr Roach said: "It's unique in its own right. It shows his handwriting at that age and shows how Paul was thinking at the time.

"His handwriting is well advanced - you would say it was written by someone who was older than 10-years-old, more like 14 or 15."

Although the researcher said he is not concerned about its value, he likened the essay to John Lennon's christening bracelet, which was the last piece of Beatles memorabilia to be sold in a private auction. It fetched £27,000.

McCartney, whose hits included Paperback Writer, was marked down for his grammar in the project, using the word 'But' at the start of a sentence.

But instead of joining the examiner in criticism, Mr Roach believes the decorative 'B' hints towards the musician's future.

"The interesting thing is that it is the same 'B' as on the early Beatles drum-kit logo in 1961 and 1962."

The 10-year-old, who would become one of the most famous singer songwriters of all time, entered a city council essay competition in 1953.

He wrote about the "lovely young Queen" Elizabeth's coronation, the gathered crowds and the parade through London.

The schoolboy compares the happy scenes expected outside Buckingham Palace to the coronation of William the Conqueror nine centuries earlier, when a massacre of Saxons took place.

He also declares that Britain's "present day royalty rules with affection rather than force". Little did he know that in 1997 he would be knighted by the same queen.

McCartney won the under-11s age group category and was presented with a prize at the Central Library by the Lord Mayor on 27 May 1953.

Mr Roach explained how he came across the bound collection of essays: "I've been working on my own private project which is a book on the family history of the McCartney family.

"I did know from reading the council minutes that this competition took place, and it was then a case of looking for the actual winning entries."

He discovered the volume six months ago among a collection marked "coronation events", with no clues pointing towards the rock star's essay, thought to be his earliest surviving creative work.

Mr Roach, whose book "McCartney: In The Town Where They Was Born" is released in mid October, said many historians believe McCartney bought a book on modern art with his book token prize.

They say the book inspired him to become a musician.

By chance, the volume of essays were stored next to a collection of issues of Mersey Beat from 1962 to 1966, the music magazine that helped launch the Beatles to become the biggest band of their generation.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Life and Style
love + sex
Arts and Entertainment
Victoria Wood, Kayvan Novak, Alexa Chung, Chris Moyles
tvReview: No soggy bottoms, but plenty of other baking disasters on The Great Comic Relief Bake Off
Sport
Ashley Young celebrates the winner for Manchester United against Newcastle
footballNewcastle 0 Man United 1: Last minute strike seals precious victory
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Seth Rogan is one of America’s most famous pot smokers
filmAmy Pascal resigned after her personal emails were leaked following a cyber-attack sparked by the actor's film The Interview
News
Benjamin Netanyahu and his cartoon bomb – the Israeli PM shows his ‘evidence’
people
Arts and Entertainment
80s trailblazer: comedian Tracey Ullman
tv
News
i100
Life and Style
A statue of the Flemish geographer Gerard Kremer, Geradus Mercator (1512 - 1594) which was unveiled at the Geographical Congree at Anvers. He was the first person to use the word atlas to describe a book of maps.
techThe 16th century cartographer created the atlas
Arts and Entertainment
Stephen Tompkinson is back as DCI Banks
tvReview: Episode one of the new series played it safe, but at least this drama has a winning formula
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: UI / UX Designer

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm are focussed on assis...

Recruitment Genius: General Processor

£7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A vacancy has arisen for a General Processor ...

Recruitment Genius: Outbound Sales Executive - B2B

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...

Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Associate

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot