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The Beatles at Darwin Airport at 2.30am on 11 June 1964. Between 1950 and 1974 Darwin Airport was a common refuelling stop for international flights, and many famous figures passed through. The Beatles arrived for their Australian tour at the height of global Beatlemania. Like 400 others, Josie and her twin sister Jill went to the airport hoping to catch a glimpse of the band. Jill worked at Qantas at the time, which gave them access to the Qantas Lounge. Jill even managed to touch Paul's sleeve. "We weren't screaming groupies," Josie says, "but it was quite thrilling." Left to right: reporter John Edwards from British news service ITN, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Jimmie Nicol (who was replacing Ringo Starr, not touring at that point due to illness) and George Harrison. This photograph is featured in the Lost Darwin exhibition on at Northern Territory Library until 14 August.

Image: Supplied by Josephine Swan-Saunders

Published: 12 June 2016


Forgotten Territory was a weekly photo column of historic images in the Northern Territory News which I curated from 2016 until 2019 supported by the collections of the Northern Territory Library and other cultural institutions around Australia, as well as local history Facebook groups. 

Click on the images to read the story behind the image.

Warning: May contain images of people who have died.

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