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08 August 2004

Camden Town remembered

Here is a beautiful little piece of nostalgia from Dick Jones' Patteran Pages.
"When Adam & I skulked in doorways with our fists buried deep in our duffle coat pockets, fags dangling from corners of mouths, pretending to be Sal Paradise & Dean Moriarty, Camden Town was another country. There was a hint of the exotica that sprung fully formed from between the paving stones during the mid-to-late ‘60s. You could find the odd rebel bookshop selling communist & anarchist literature & a few beatniks would obligingly fall across your path from pub or club. But the region was still primarily the province of the London Irish & the second wave of West Indian immigrants. The battered glass-covered noticeboards outside tobacconists & sweet shops were full of scribbled small ads offering single rooms to tenants, but making it clear that ‘no Irish or coloureds need apply’. I even remember reading one that stated with disarming frankness, ‘Sorry, no niggers’."

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