Paul McCartney has set the record straight on who broke up The Beatles, saying that John Lennon was the one who walked away from the band.

Since the iconic band parted ways almost 50 years ago, McCartney has shouldered the blame for the split.

However, in a new interview with the BBC set to be broadcast later this month, he said Lennon was the one who prompted the break-up.

When asked by interviewer John Wilson about his decision to go solo, McCartney responded: "I didn't instigate the split. That was our Johnny. I am not the person who instigated the split.

"Oh no, no, no. John walked into a room one day and said I am leaving the Beatles. And he said, 'It's quite thrilling, it's rather like a divorce.' And then we were left to pick up the pieces."

Paul McCartney said John Lennon walked away from The Beatles

Asked whether the band would have continued if Lennon hadn't left, McCartney said: "It could have. The point of it really was that John was making a new life with Yoko [Ono] and he wanted... to lie in bed for a week in Amsterdam for peace. You couldn't argue with that. It was the most difficult period of my life."

McCartney added: "This was my band, this was my job, this was my life. I wanted it to continue. I thought we were doing some pretty good stuff - Abbey Road, Let It Be, not bad - and I thought we could continue."

McCartney said he wanted The Beatles to continue: "This was my life"

McCartney explained that the confusion over The Beatles break-up arose because their new manager, Allen Klein, told them to keep quiet about the split while he concluded some business deals.

"So for a few months we had to pretend," he said. "It was weird because we all knew it was the end of the Beatles but we couldn't just walk away."

He ended up suing the rest of the band in the high court, seeking the dissolution of their contractual relationship in order to keep their music out of Klein's hands.

McCartney explains why he sued The Beatles in the high court

"I had to fight and the only way I could fight was in suing the other Beatles, because they were going with Klein. And they thanked me for it years later," McCartney said.

"But I didn't instigate the split. That was our Johnny coming in one day and saying 'I’m leaving the group’."

McCartney's full interview can be heard on the new BBC Radio 4 series This Cultural Life on October 23.

For more music news click here