Lennon Street in Chelyabinsk

Lennon Joins Lenin on Russian Town Map

Oct 12 2000

YEKATERINBURG, Russia (Reuters) - Most Russian cities have a Lenin Street, but Chelyabinsk, a smokestack industrial city in the Ural Mountains, will become the first to have a Lennon Street.

Valery Yarushin, a one-time Soviet rock star and lifelong Beatles fan, told Reuters by telephone that deputies on the Chelyabinsk city council had voted overwhelmingly to back his proposal to name a street after murdered former Beatle John Lennon.

``At the City Duma hearing there were only two opponents of the idea,'' he said.

``They said there were plenty of people in Chelyabinsk who had brought glory to the city, and they deserved the honor. But good sense won out and all the other deputies voted 'Yes'.''

Yarushin said he had initially proposed renaming the city's central Soviet Street after Lennon, who was killed by a fan 20 years ago and would have been 60 this year.

In the end the city council had not decided whether to rename an existing street or name a new one, he said.

The Beatles were hugely popular in Russia during Soviet times, when fans braved official disapproval to collect records of Western rock groups.

Steve Hawk, via RMB, Oct 12, 2000

News item sent in by Diana (amaranath56@aol.com) - many thanks!

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