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In 2015, the last piano that John Lennon played went on public display for the first time in the UK at the award-winning Beatles Story tourist attraction in Liverpool.

Its distinctive sounds can be heard on albums like Walls and Bridges and Double Fantasy.  The former Beatle also used it to collaborate on Fame with David Bowie and Whatever Gets You Through The Night with Elton.

In addition, the piano has been utilised by other musical bigwigs including Bob Dylan, Lou Reed, Don McLean and Aerosmith.
Next year, the instrument will be among the Great Exhibition of the North’s iconic objects on display, as will the space suit worn by astronaut Helen Sharman – while the 2018 Great North Run will form part of its grand finale.

These latest attractions of the Great Exhibition, designed to highlight the achievements and innovations of the North of England, have been announced by Karen Bradley, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.


Ms Bradley said: “The Great North Run is a British sporting institution that has raised the profile of Tyneside across the world.

“It is a fantastic example of how events like these can change a city’s culture and I am thrilled it is partnering with the Great Exhibition of the North.

“The race will be the perfect finale to the three month exhibition, which will celebrate the very best of art, design and innovation across the whole of the North of England and help boost investment and tourism in the region to leave a lasting legacy.”

The exhibition, which received a £5m grant from the government, starts on the 22nd of June and ends with the Great North Run half marathon on September 9.


Organisers expect it to attract an extra 1.2 million visitors to Newcastle and Gateshead and bring a £184m boost to the North East economy.