BRITISH Pathé has begun uploading 80,000 archive films to YouTube, a world history lesson to get lost in online. Have a dig – in between the clips of Pele playing in the 1950s and excerpts of JFK speeches, you can find some grainy footage of Camden businessman John Mills during his time at the Town Hall.
The former Labour finance chief is seen with sideburns to envy as he is questioned about Camden Council’s decision to smash up its own block of empty flats in Hampstead to deter squatters.
In the footage, which Pathe say was ultimately never actually broadcast, he talks of the search for a balance over what to do with the empty block in Hampstead. Always frank with his opinions, he warns that some residents found it more upsetting to live next to squatters than to see the council deliberately wreck a flat to make it inhabitable.
“It was something that would never have been planned,” he insists. “It’s a very awkward choice to make.”