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The Beatles nearly drafted
The Beatles would never have formed if they hadn’t narrowly escaped being drafted into the army.
The band’s Sir Paul McCartney said the group – which originally came together in 1960 – were lucky to have met when they did, as up until that year National Service in the British military was compulsory for almost all men aged between 18 and 51.
He said: “A couple of years earlier, we would have been in the Army, and it’s very doubtful that The Beatles would have formed.
“We would have been at Aldershot, or wherever, in various camps, and might not have even met.”
The group’s line-up changed as they played in clubs in their native Liverpool and Hamburg, Germany between 1960 and 1962, when they settled on four members, with John Lennon, Ringo Starr and George Harrison joining Paul in the group.
Paul said he didn’t realise just how ravaged his hometown was by World War II as he grew up, despite the fact he would regularly play in areas which had been hit by bombs.
He added to Radio Times magazine: “The places we played we called ‘bombies’, only later realising these were bombsites.
“It still didn’t click with me. It was only later I thought: ‘Oh! There was a house there. A bomb destroyed it – and now we’re playing football on it’.”