Monday 6 December 2021



People around the world have been watching The Beatles' final days as a group in "Get Back," Peter Jackson's sprawling, nearly-eight-hour documentary, which debuted Nov. 25 on the Disney Plus streaming service.

At least one local woman, however, witnessed the documentary's climactic scene first-hand.

In 1969, Jennifer "Jenny" Spruill, a native of England who has lived in Hampstead, north of Wilmington, for more than 20 years with her husband, Jack, a North Carolina native, was working at an office in central London.
During "a pretty dark and dreary" day on Jan. 30 of that year, Spruill said, a man she worked with asked, "'Why don't you go out on the fire escape? Something's happening.'"

Her office was on the fifth floor, so Spruill and two co-workers climbed to the sixth-story fire escape and stepped outside.

"And there were The Beatles," Spruill said — John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, along with the organist Billy Preston — playing what would prove to be their final live "show" as a band.
The funny part, she said, is that she wasn't exactly a Beatles fan.

"You probably couldn't have paid me to go to a Beatles concert," Spruill said, although these days she's changed her tune. "Of course, I am (a fan) now. I think they're amazing."

And while she stayed watching the band play for longer than some she worked with, Spruill said, eventually she began thinking, "Gosh, this is noisy," and went back inside before police put an end to the impromptu concert, which lasted for less than an hour.
It's a wonderful story, and one Spruill has told to family and friends many times over the years, the proof is right there on the screen.
(Jennifer, at right  in miniskirt watching The Beatles play on the rooftop)     
Jack and Jenny Spruill's daughter Fiona Spruill, a North Carolina native (and former New York Times editor) currently living in Amsterdam, said she's always treasured her mother's story of the day she saw The Beatles.

And while she's always believed her mom's account, "We had never been able to find her in any footage," Fiona Spruill wrote on her Twitter page Dec. 1. "Until tonight." 

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