SIXTIES greats The Merseybeats return to the Floral Pavilion in New Brighton later this year with a special charity show.

The band - whose many hits included Mister Moonlight, Really mystified and Wishin' & hopin' - are at the venue in An Evening with the Merseybeats and Friends on Friday, March 29.

The show is billed as a night of '60s hit records and celebration of Merseyside’s musical heritage.

The band will also tell the stories behind the songs. Supporting them on the night will be 60s contemporaries The Fortunes, whose hits included Here it comes again, Storm in a teacup and Seasons in the sun.

Proceeds from the show will go to Relate Cheshire & Merseyside, a counselling service for local families and young people.

Looking forward to the show, Merseybeats' lead singer and guitarist Tony Crane MBE, who is patron of the charity, told the Globe this afternoon: "We can't wait to get back to the Floral, it's a lovely venue and the show always goes down very well.

"The Fortunes are very good friends of ours, so it's going to be great having them as our special guests on the night."

On being made patron of Relate Cheshire & Merseyside, the 73-year-old continued: "I've been involved, on a fundraising level, with the charity for many years and it's an honour to become patron.

"A few years ago, the charity renamed its counselling service in Shrewsbury after me, Crane Quality Counselling.

"I've always been heavily involved in charity shows. I've put a few shows on at the Liverpool Empire, featuring a few showbusiness friends.

"My claim to fame was that Cliff Richard once sang backing vocals on a song during one of shows."

The Merseybeats first started performing over fifty years ago at The Cavern Club, Liverpool’s hottest nightclub in the 60s, and played alongside The Beatles and many other bands around in that era.

They still perform throughout the UK and internationally, but say there is nothing quite like playing for a home crowd.

Tony Crane, who lives in Meols, was awarded an MBE for services to music, charity and the community in the Queen's Birthday Honours in 2017.

The singer and guitarist has been in the music business for more than 55 years and has also helped save historic buildings in Wirral and further afield.

Looking back on his career, he said: "We had our first hit in 1963 and to be honest, The Merseybeats have never stopped.

"We've still got a very big fan base, bigger than we had in the 60s.

"It's always great to meet them after the shows.

"We often play all over the world so it is nice to play for a home crowd and all my family.

"It’s still a great feeling that we get from the audience and really nice when you hear them sing your songs."

Tickets for the March 29 show, which starts at 7.30pm, are from the Floral Pavilion box office on 0151 666 0000.