I recently came across a wonderful collection of old photographs taken in central London in the 1950’s, ‘60’s and ‘70’s. They capture a very different scene from that which we see today. Lots of red buses, classic motorcars, lovely shop fronts, and many individual shops, with very few chain stores. However, what is most noticeable is how quiet the streets are, with comparatively light traffic and remarkably few pedestrians. It’s not a scene I recall from when I was a student in the late 1960’s, living on Tottenham Court Road. My memory is of busy streets, and crowded pavements: I think my memory is playing tricks, and these photos are the more accurate.
The complete set of photos is here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wasleso/sets/
Below many of the photos people have added comments, tried to identify the location, and on this one added some lovely history about the characters seen in the photograph: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wasleso/961431880/in/photostream/