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‘Beatlemania’ legal giant dies, aged 91

28 June 2017

A legendary Liverpool solicitor who advised John Lennon and Bill Shankly and was involved in both the Heysel and Hillsborough football stadium disaster cases during a remarkable career, has died, aged 91. 

The Law Gazette (UK) reports that Rex Makin, who was admitted in 1949, was reputed to have coined the phrase ‘Beatlemania’.

His firm, E. Rex Makin & Co announced the death of the senior partner and said he will be remembered with ‘affection and respect’. The firm said Mr Making was “part of Liverpool’s history, a great character and champion of the underdog. His philanthropic work reached throughout the city and beyond”.

In a long and varied career he worked on cases including the 1952 Knowsley Hall murder case (in which Lady Derby was shot), and both the Heysel and Hillsborough stadium disasters.  Thirty-nine people—mostly Italians — died when a wall collapsed in the Heysel Stadium in Brussels, before the Juventus-Liverpool European Cup final; 96 Liverpool fans died during crushing at the Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield in 1989.

The Gazette reports he advised Merseyside celebrities Gerry Marsden, Ken Dodd and Carla Lane and was the family solicitor to Beatles manager Brian Epstein.

The Liverpool Echo reports that the Tributes have poured in from across the legal and political sectors and the city’s mayor , Joe Anderson, said flags would fly at half mast from council buildings.

An Echo columnist described Mr Makin as ‘the most famous man in Liverpool, who was also virtually unknown outside Liverpool’.

Last updated on the 16th September 2019