Weird & Wonderful London 1
While I was researching today I came across some peculiar photographs of Londoners worth sharing. In East London in 1934 there was concern that babies weren’t getting enough fresh air and sunshine, so south-facing ‘baby balconies’ were installed until the London County Council (LCC) stopped them on safety grounds.
The UK has a long, strong link with Spain. At the Festival of Britain in 1951 there was a parade of Nazarenos in a holy week procession – the outfits had been copied by the KKK. There had been a huge amount of support for Spanish rebels during the Spanish Civil War. More than 2,000 Britons went off to help fight Franco’s fascists and money was raised all over the country. Picasso decreed that admission to art galleries should be paid in pairs of boots for the Spanish front.
Vibrators! In 1964 they tested foot massage machines at Victoria Station to ease passengers weary feet, although it might have helped if everyone had thought to remove their shoes. Thank God we have trainers now, which are basically carpet slippers.
If you had to think of the least likely pair ever to be photographed together you’d be hard pushed to come up with two less likely than Rita ‘Hello Cheeky Face’ Webb, whose film persona made Irene Handl look refined, and Sidney Poitier, Hollywood heartthrob, here in Watney Market in the East End filming ‘To Sir With Love’.
Finally here’s one of my own. It’s a sunny day and our building is being renovated. Rather than have the entire warehouse scaffolded we hired European abseilers who carry out all construction work from a network of ropes suspended from the roof. As they zoom past the windows it’s like having the circus come to town.