Film in Context: Alfie

Tony Aldgate looks at how a 60s film about a Cockney Lothario dealt with sex, censorship and angry/ cynical young men.

England swings like a pendulum do

Bobbies on bicycles, two by two,

Westminster Abbey, The Tower and Big Ben,

The rosy red cheeks of the little children.

Despite the banal lyrics, crass rhymes and trite tourist imagery of its chorus, Roger Miller's 45 rpm record, 'England Swings', made the Top 10 in the American pop charts in November 1965 and the British Top 20 by late January 1966. It was further, albeit modest, recognition of the country's new-found cultural role as the harbinger of everything that was exciting and dynamic in the 'Swinging Sixties'.

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