The Beatles and their MBEs: The Welsh Reaction

Wales since 1945

26 October, 1965, was a monumental day for popular music. Until then, it was very rare for musical acts to be honoured by the royal family for their success. But that all changed with the Beatles. For on that day, each member of the band was awarded with the Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE).

By 1965, the Beatles had become Britain’s greatest musical ambassadors, and were at the height of their popularity. Beatlemania gripped the world, and it arrived in full force at the gates of Buckingham Palace on 26 October.

Police keeping back a crowd of young fans outside Buckingham Palace, London, as the Beatles receive their MBEs, 26 October 1965.

In 1960s Britain, rock ‘n’ roll musicians were known for provoking hysterical behaviour amongst their audiences, and the Beatles were no different. Many believed that this behaviour represented a decline in…

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