The Time Bob Dylan Visited John Lennon’s Childhood Home

And no one noticed...

Bob Dylan retains a fascination with his fellow songwriters. The American artist famously dropped past the house in New Jersey where Bruce Springsteen grew up – sparking worried calls to the police from neighbours concerned by the dishevelled figure wandering up and down the street.

But there’s another tale, too. Bob Dylan and the Beatles had a somewhat lop-sided relationship – the Fab Four adored the songwriter, allowing his work to influence their own. In turn, Dylan could be scathing, notably telling a crest-fallen Paul McCartney that 1966 opus ‘Revolver’ was born out of a need to stop being “cute”.

That said, Bob Dylan appears to have been a deeper fan that he let on. A 2009 European tour took the songwriter to Liverpool’s Echo Arena, and he used a day-off in his itinerary to visit Mendips – John Lennon’s childhood home, at 251 Menlove Avenue.

John Lennon was housed by his Aunt Mimi and uncle George, and the property figures large in Beatles mythology. Since being purchased by the National Trust, it has been restored to its 1950s fitting, representing a real time capsule.

Bob Dylan boarded a tourist bus unnoticed, and took the £16 tour alone – the truth only coming to light afterwards.

A National Trust spokeswoman said Dylan “appeared to enjoy himself”. 

“He took one of our general minibus tours. People on the minibus did not recognise him apparently,” the spokeswoman told the BBC.

“He could have booked a private tour but he was happy to go on the bus with everyone else,” she added.

Bob Dylan isn’t the only person to visit John Lennon’s former home – the likes of James Taylor and Corinne Bailey Rae have also popped past.

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