Ringo Starr and Paul MacCartney both made the trip to Harold in person to announce Alfie as the winner of the “Which is the best Beatles album?” competition launched in 1970.
The competition was originally due to end in 1971, when George Martin sent the answer to Ringo. However Ringo misplaced the envelope and assuming it had been used as roach material, they decided to ‘Let it be’ and the competition rumble on for a further 42 years…outliving two of the Beatles! The contest has led to fierce debate around the country, not least in the Squirrel Lickers Arms where the pub landlord Eddie once broke a regular’s femur for suggesting that Rubber Soul was better than Abbey Road.
Last month Ringo uncovered the envelope stuffed in a box full of Thomas the Tank Engine fan mail from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi which he found in the back of his shed, and the winning entry was drawn from a hat last week by Paul Gambaccini, in front of a huge cheering crowd outside Buckingham palace.
Alfie, 18, was delighted with his triumph as he “never wins anything”, and only changed his mind from Sergeant Peppers in May.
The nationwide excitement over the event has been likened to last years Olympics and music fans are already looking forward to November’s announcement of ‘who’s best, Madonna or Lady Gaga?’. Whilst animal enthusiasts anticipate David Attenborough’s decision on ‘who would win in a fight, a Lion or a Tiger?’ and sports fans await Des Lynham’s verdict on ‘which is better, football or rugby?’