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Subject: Les Anthony, John Lennon’s chauffeur who drove his psychedelic Rolls-Royce Phantom

Dead at 86
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Date Posted: Tuesday, May 26, 11:58:54am


FREE LIVING' John Lennon’s chauffeur who drove his psychedelic Rolls-Royce Phantom dies aged 86

THE chauffeur who drove Beatle John Lennon around in his famous psychedelic Rolls-Royce has died aged 86.

Former Welsh Guards soldier Les Anthony had been suffering from Alzheimer’s, said his family.

He was paid £36 a week in the 1960s (worth about £600 now) to be on permanent call in John’s hippy Phantom V.

His job ended in 1971 when Lennon moved to New York with Yoko Ono.

Son Melvin, 63, said: “My father had some funny times. He told me that John Lennon used to answer the door naked.

“But my father didn’t care, at the end of the day you are employed by them.

“He said it was because they were hippies and were free living.”

Les, who was 6ft 4in, became a pal of Beatles drummer Ringo Starr but did not get on with Paul McCartney “because he thought he was tight with money”, said Melvin, of Chertsey, Surrey.

Les would drive John to London from the star’s Kenwood estate, in Weybridge, Surrey.

In 1965 John submitted an order for the “most exclusive” Rolls-Royce model.

But despite lavishing such attention — and money – on his Rolls Royce Phantom V, Lennon was known as a poor driver.

He passed his UK driving test in 1965 when he was 25, but had never driven a vehicle, preferring instead to employ one of two chauffeurs, Les and Bill Corbett.

Six-foot-four Les was also used as a bodyguard for the Beatles due to his army experience and tall build.

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Subject Author Date
Phantom pic ...LinkTuesday, May 26, 02:39:39pm

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