Stolen Acorns, Originally Planted by John and Yoko, Go on Display

Via the BBC:

A pair of acorns reportedly planted by John Lennon and Yoko Ono have gone on display after allegedly being stolen by a young fan 55 years ago.

The Beatles singer and his artist wife planted the acorns in the grounds of Coventry Cathedral in 1968, along with a wrought iron bench.

A retired police officer, who found them in a box while tidying up, posted them to Liverpool Beatles Museum.

The "living sculpture" marked the start of the couple's campaign for peace.

However, it reportedly caused upset with the cathedral authorities and within a week, the acorns had been stolen and Lennon had removed the bench.

It has now emerged that for 55 years, the acorns had been in the possession of former Warwickshire Police traffic sergeant Mike Davies.

The 88-year-old said they had been brought into Nuneaton police station by a man who was about 19 or 20, who had been caught drink-driving outside Bedworth a few days after the cathedral planting.

He said the driver, who looked like a "typical lad about town", and his girlfriend were Beatles fans who had returned to the cathedral after the planting ceremony and stolen the acorns, coating them in clear nail varnish to preserve them.

He added that because the acorns had no owner and, at the time, no value, he could not charge the couple with theft.

"They walked and the acorns were left," he said.

"It was no good taking them back and replanting them because they were covered in nail varnish so wouldn't grow.

"They were in my desk until I retired in 1980 when I put them in a cardboard box and that's where they remained until I decided to start clearing out my own personal things."

He said that when he came across them again last year, it took him a moment to remember what they were.

"They were two seconds off going in the waste bin when I thought 'that was John Lennon and Yoko Ono'," he said.

The great-grandfather, from Nuneaton, said he was not a fan of The Beatles, and preferred the music of American tenor Mario Lanza.

However, he said he found the details of the museum on Liverpool's Mathew Street online and decided "for the sake of a stamp" to post the acorns there to see if they were of interest.

In the accompanying letter, he told curators if they were not of interest, "just bin them".

"I certainly have no interest in them being returned," he added.

The acorns have now gone on show at the museum following an unveiling by Lennon's sister, Julia Baird.

Museum owner Roag Best, brother of the band's original drummer Pete, said John Lennon and Yoko Ono "kicked off their whole peace movement with this art installation, where the acorns were planted."