Contrary to popular belief, the "teenager" didn’t suddenly materialise in the 60s, nor did they emerge at the turn of that decade (as brilliantly described in Colin MacInnes’ Absolute Beginners). The start of youth cults started as back as the early to mid 50s, as rationing finally ended and a defined group emerged between children and adults.
The original Teddy Boys and Girls pre-date rock ‘n’ roll – they created their look as a reaction to conformity and post-war poverty, they danced to big band sounds and they blazed a trail for all youth cults that followed.
Ken Russell’s photos of the original Teddy Girls (aka Bombsite Boudiccas) from 1955 are now online. Looking both menacing and years ahead of their time amongst the bomb sites of London, these fantastic photos are available to buy online as both prints and art cards at very reasonable prices. The images are also available to galleries for public display.