The four-hour Liverpool gig that saw the city ‘at the center of the universe’

Yoko Ono, Coleen and Wayne Rooney, Rafa Benitez, Mel C and Kenny Dalglish were all present

14 years ago, a crowd of 36,000 turned out to Anfield Stadium to celebrate the city’s year as European Capital of Culture.

Led by Sir Paul McCartney, the Liverpool Sound concert took place on June 1, 2008 and was the first time the Beatles, now 80, had played in his hometown for five years previously.

The weekend gig was originally planned to have a waterfront venue, with a plan to drain water from Salthouse Dock and erect a stage and seating inside. But ECHO reported at the time that the idea was scrapped after a feasibility study suggested it would cost millions of pounds.

Read more: Liverpool’s lost music hall that was ‘considered a rite of passage’ in the city

Sir Paul told the ecstatic crowd that he was in ‘the city of culture at the center of the universe’ and played nearly 30 songs from across his career for nearly two triumphant hours. The ex-Beatle was joined by Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl for heartbreaking versions of Band On The Run and Back In The USSR.

Many of his family were in the crowd, as well as Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison, Sir George Martin and Sgt Pepper’s cover artist Sir Peter Blake. Wayne Rooney and Coleen McLoughlin, Rafa Benitez, Mel C, Kenny Dalglish and more were also spotted at the sold-out gig.

For some great historical images from the past, check out and see what you can discover

Liverpool favorites The Zutons opened the four-and-a-half-hour spectacular and were followed by Leeds indie rockers The Kaiser Chiefs. The evening ended with a giant fireworks display above the stadium.

At the time, music fans from all over the world flocked to Anfield for the Liverpool Sound concert.

This month alone, the home of Liverpool FC has hosted a series of major events, with tens of thousands of fans taking to the pitch to watch the Rolling Stones, Elton John and now the Eagles.

Now, 14 years later, we take a look back at the event – from the music lovers arriving at Anfield to the crowds and performances staged that evening.

The latest round of Memory Lane is now at major retailers including Asda, Tesco, Home Bargains and select newsagents. This special series of bumper images looks at fun in the sun – with stunning photography and treasured memories of family vacations of yesteryear. You can also buy Memory Lane online here.

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Elizabeth J. Harless