Rob Baker

Rob Baker - Author Archive

Rob Baker writes the London history website Another Nickel in the Machine and has lived in South London for 25 years. An occasional comedy and entertainment TV Producer – he’s worked with a motley crew that includes Wallace and Gromit, Jeremy Clarkson and Adam and Joe.

Rob Baker's Recent posts:

Murphy’s Law strikes Guido and the Daily Telegraph


Hard times at Daily Telegraph Towers. The once great newspaper that now produces tons of clickbait balls is looking to remove staff. Guido Fawkes tells his readers as much:
Yesterday the … (read more)

Posted: 30th, March 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Reviews | Comment

Kill The Toff: The Prolific John Creasey And His Class Act

Kill The Toff first published in 1950


THE Toff, or to give him his proper name, the Honourable Richard Rollison, was the creation of the novelist John Creasey … (read more)

Posted: 30th, June 2014 | In: Books, Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

Terry-Thomas, Jimmy Tarbuck And The Diamond Cigarette Holder Heist

TV’s elegant comedian Terry-Thomas, who exhibits a distinctive sartorial style, returns from a holiday in Madeira sporting a cap and extended cigarette holder. He carries a … (read more)

Posted: 30th, June 2014 | In: Celebrities, Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

D-Day’s First Reporter: Gustav The Pigeon And The Message He Brought Home

Gustav the Pigeon’s report from the beaches of Normandy, 6 June, 1944.


THE first war-correspondent dispatch from the D-Day landings came from Gustav, an RAF Coastal Command homing-pigeon, released … (read more)

Posted: 6th, June 2014 | In: Flashback, Reviews, Strange But True | Comment

Charlie Chaplin’s Visit to A Starstruck London in 1921

Charlie Chaplin poses with fifty boys and girls from Hoxton School, September 1921. PA/PA Archive/Press Association Images


CHARLIE Chaplin was woken on the morning 17 September 1921 while … (read more)

Posted: 13th, May 2014 | In: Celebrities, Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

The Rise and Fall of Les McKeown and the Bay City Rollers

The Bay City Rollers, 1974. The Press Association Archives.


THE BBC say it’s 60 million while The Guardian wrote that it was 120 million, The Scotsman, no … (read more)

Posted: 23rd, April 2014 | In: Flashback, Key Posts, Music | Comment

The Blind Beggar And The Bloody Killing of George Cornell by Ronnie Kray

Ronald Kray 1969 – At last in Gaol.


ONE hundred and one years after the evangelist William Booth preached his first open air sermon outside the Blind … (read more)

Posted: 14th, March 2014 | In: Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

May 25 1951: The Story Of The Day Traitors Burgess and Maclean Left Town

Composite of library files of the famous intelligence ‘whistle blowers’ (top from left) Harold “Kim” Philby, Peter Wright, Guy Burgess (bottom from left) Sarah Tisdall, Clive … (read more)

Posted: 6th, March 2014 | In: Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

The Rise And Fall of Benny Hill

Benny Hill posing with dancers for the first ever ‘The Benny Hill Show’, broadcast in January 1955 for the BBC. 


Benny Hill wanted his women to be … (read more)

Posted: 24th, February 2014 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts | Comment

The Valentine’s Day Massacre And A Nightclub Toilet

The bodies of six of the men who were slain in a gang-shooting in Chicago’s North Side, Feb. 14, 1929. Several of the bodies are huddle … (read more)

Posted: 14th, February 2014 | In: Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

How Mary Quant’s Mini-Skirt Made London ‘Atwinkle With Thighs’ And Swing

Mary Quant in 1963 /AP/Press Association Images


EVERYBODY knows that Mary Quant invented the mini-skirt. Except she didn’t. In reality nobody really knows for sure who produced … (read more)

Posted: 11th, February 2014 | In: Celebrities, Fashion, Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

There Used To Be A Chelsea Drugstore On The King’s Road

A drugstore in King’s Road, Chelsea, London, which has a cocktail bar and a boutique. PA/PA Archive/Press Association Images


THESE days the King’s Road looks not unlike … (read more)

Posted: 27th, January 2014 | In: Flashback, Key Posts, The Consumer | Comment (1)

As Hitler’s Boxer Said To The Actress: Silent Anny Ondra Was Hitchcock’s Star Of Britain’s First ‘Talkie’

IN1929 almost everyone in the British film industry was convinced that the newfangled talking films would be nothing but a flash in the pan. But as the director Michael Powell … (read more)

Posted: 12th, January 2014 | In: Celebrities, Film, Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

Extreme Dieting: Keith Moon Versus Hunter S Thompson

Keith Moon, the eccentric drummer of The Who, at Heathrow Airport with his girlfriend Annette Walker-Lax, on return from the United States. 

THE late Keith Moon was … (read more)

Posted: 27th, December 2013 | In: Books, Celebrities, Key Posts, Music | Comments (2)

‘Our Nelson Mandelas’ – The IRA’s Balcombe Street Gang

Photo: The four Provisional IRA terrorists known as the Balcombe Street Terror Gang, from left: Hugh Doherty, Martin O’Connel, Edward Butler and Harry Duggan, in a … (read more)

Posted: 10th, December 2013 | In: Flashback, Key Posts, Politicians | Comment

The Rise And Fall of ‘Hippiedilly’ In 1969

ON the Sunday morning of 21 September 1969, a slightly-built Chief Inspector convinced some hippies inside a squat at a large five storey mansion at 144 Piccadilly to lower an … (read more)

Posted: 5th, December 2013 | In: Fashion, Flashback, Key Posts, Music | Comment

The Judges of Miss World, 1970: Bombs, Blacks And The Angry Brigade


ON 21 November 1970, in his usual smooth and professional manner and while, “the girls were changing into their extremely expensive evening gowns”, Michael Aspel introduced the judges of that … (read more)

Posted: 28th, November 2013 | In: Flashback, Key Posts | Comment

Blow-Up: When the Swinging Sixties Came to Stockwell

STOCKWELL Road isn’t the most exciting and handsome of roads. It may have been once, but the Luftwaffe and the usual unimaginative sixties south London redevelopment put paid to that. … (read more)

Posted: 18th, November 2013 | In: Film, Flashback, Key Posts | Comment