Changing Piccadilly 1961

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  • Description

    Various shots of Piccadilly Circus at night; the illuminated signs are seen, plus an 'Underground' sign for the tube. Various daytime shots of the area; M/S of Eros; high angle traffic scenes.

    C/Us of a model by Sir William Holford, made when the London County Council asked him for ideas for the future of Piccadilly. It shows a fairly monstrous looking design of Eros as part of a pedestrian area (which later happened, of course!) and a cinema stretching over the road while traffic passes underneath. High angle shot of the real Piccadilly looking towards Coventry Street with Eros in the foreground.

    M/Ss and C/Us of the third and first prize winning models in a competition run by an evening newspaper; both are hideous (in my humble view), and show the characterful buildings of the Piccadilly area being replaced by filing-cabinet-looking tower blocks and bleak architectural features.

    The winner of the first prize included two awful pillars where illuminated advertising signs would be incorporated, as well as a horrendous towering cylindrical hotel - yeuch! C/U of a drawing of this model; looks horrible, though I imagine it must have seemed rather modern and sleek in 1961.

    M/S of a double-decker bus driving with a Guinness advert on the side, driving past Piccadilly at night; M/S of the illuminated signs. Commentator says "One day this wonderful sight will be quite unknown and to some of us only a nostalgic memory".

    Note: On file is a page from the Evening News and Star showing the three prize-winning models as well as 'What the experts say...'. There is also a press release from London County Council detailing Sir William's 'tentative proposals' (I should think so too!) and some b/w photos of his model.
    Cuts exist - see separate record.

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  • Data

    Archive
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    10/04/1961
    Sound:
    Sound
    Media URN:
    1745
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Film ID:
    139.02
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration
    00:01:50:00
    Time in/Out:
    01:00:23:00 / 01:02:13:00
    Canister:
    CP 328
    Sort Number:
    CP 328
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