TENS of thousands of music fans will pour into Liverpool for International Beatle Week - despite a number of cancellations after the London bombings.
Many fans from around the world have decided to stay away after the terrorist attacks in the capital and the shooting of Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes.
But organisers say this year's event, which starts tomorrow and will continue through the city's Mathew Street festival, will still be bigger and better than ever.
Bill Heckle of Cavern City Tours said: "The terrorist bombs in London led to a spate of cancellations from Japan and America.
"The subsequent killing of a Brazilian in London by the police, who wrongly assumed he was a terrorist, has become a major diplomatic issue and sadly has led to cancellations by Brazilian fans and bands."
Mr Heckle said organising a major event in Liverpool is not easy when the city is gearing up to Capital of Culture 2008.
He said: "Organisers of any major event such as this one are in quite a difficult situation at the moment. Liverpool is undergoing a lot of construction and road-works and does not look very attractive. But the Beatle Week is proving to be more popular than ever, which is testament to the event's growing reputation."
Liverpool's most recognised tribute band, the Mersey Beatles, will launch the festival on Wednesday with a performance at the Cavern Club at 8pm.
Acts from as far away as Australia and Sweden will also take part this week.
Among the cover bands performing are Sweden's most popular Beatles tribute band, named Liverpool, and the Rutles, who will be ending their farewell tour in Liverpool on Friday.