Posted by Peter Ceresole on May 04, 2016 at 20:24:28 user PeterC.
In Reply to: Re: posted by Robert Hill on May 04, 2016 at 14:38:26:
My recollection (I lived near Manchester) was that they needed to be specially cleaned rather than slowly turning white of their own accord.
Certainly. As a child, I didn't see the cleaning. And it took several goes. They'd be black, and after the war, with the huge fires and the
dust from the bombing, they were especially black. Then they were cleaned gradually, and they'd start to be white with rain streaks as fresh soot started to coat them again, then the Clean Air Act came in and they were cleaned again. The best way to see the effect is to look on Youtube at the first half of "The Ipcress File", a lot of which was filmed around the Albert Hall. The School of Mines features large as the exterior of the "Library" where the villain is studying, and it has the piebald look it had until the '60s.
The other example of the extreme tattiness of London at the time is the large abandoned Victorian house, used as an observation post, that Caine walks to in the early light- red sun, a superbly evocative shot- which nowadays will be gleaming and titivated, worth millions.
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