This Video Shows the Oldest Known Footage of London

By Gerald Lynch on at

It may show footage of the capital more than 100 years ago, but it's surprising how little has changed around some of London's landmarks in this eye-opening video. Put together by Al Paton, the 11-minute compilation pulls together more than 40 shots of London, including the oldest known footage of the capital.

Edited in a month with the help of the British Film Institute, there's even a clip that lets you hear Big Ben chiming way back on June 18th, 1890. To put that in perspective, that's just two years after the famed Ripper murders haunted the streets of London.

The oldest clip, also dating back to 1890, was captured by the superbly-named Wordsworth Donisthorpe, whose patented "kinesigraph" camera was used to film Trafalgar Square.

Speaking to the Standard, Patton conceded that there's no certain way to verify the dates of the video, edited to show side-by-side comparisons with their modern-day equivalents. But, with the help of handwritten notes in the possession of the BFI and British Pathe, Patton is confident that many of the dates in question are authentic. Well, more authentic than Heather Graham's From Hell accent, anyway. [YouTube via Standard]