Carnaby Street: 1960 – 2010

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A new book and exhibition, Carnaby Street: 1960 – 2010 aims to capture the rich history of the London street, which has become shorthand for a particular, tourist-friendly notion (you might say fantasy) of “swinging” ’60s London. Pic: Philip Townsend

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In the ’60s music fans flocked to Carnaby Street in the hope of spotting The Beatles doing some clothes shopping – in much the same way that Britpop kids hung out at Camden’s Good Mixer in the mid-90s, hoping to see Graham Coxon (which they almost never did). Pic: Philip Townsend

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The centre of London’s fashion world is now in the east, but in the mid-60s Carnaby Street was where it was at. So much so that in 1966 The Kinks (pictured here in Soho, 1965) wrote ‘Dedicated Follower Of Fashion’, poking fun at the “Carnebetian army” – the fashion victims who thronged Carnaby Street. Pic: Getty

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Carnaby Street fact: Jimi Hendrix is often seen in photos wearing a military jacket. He bought this in 1967 at a shop on Carnaby Street called I Was Lord Kitchener’s Valet. Pic: Philip Townsend

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Another Carnaby Street punter. If we knew the first thing about fashion, we’d probably make some catty remark about this. But we don’t, so we won’t. Pic: Philip Townsend

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Carnaby Street in colour – doesn’t it make you think of Austin Powers? It’s since been pedestrianised – you can’t drive down this bit anymore. Pic: TopFoto

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A Pearly King and Queen collecting for charity in Carnaby Street, 1966. Often assumed to be an authentic overhang of London’s working-class history, in fact the Pearly style of dress is not especially ancient – although it received an unexpected revival when The White Stripes wore Pearly suits on the cover of ‘Icky Thump’. Pic: Philip Townsend

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Warren Gold poses outside the shop he owned – Lord John, one of the most popular in the street. It’s now a Pret A Manger. Pic: Getty

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