Historic footage shows epic 1927 battle versus KCL

YouTube footage from 1927 shows violent clashes between UCL and KCL on our Gower Street campus


Historic video footage published on YouTube for the first time shows violent clashes between UCL and King’s College London in UCL’s main quad.

KCL students are shown marching into the main quad

KCL students are shown marching into the main quad

The 1927 newsreel by British Pathé – called “The Battle of Gower Street” – shows UCL students gathering in the quad before a large group of KCL students march through the gates towards the portico.

UCL students are seen posing with their mascot Phineas – which is now on display in UCLU’s Phineas bar – before pelting the KCL crowd with flour bombs.



All hell breaks loose in the quad, with students firing water hoses at each other and dragging their opponents to the ground.

The violence spills out onto Gower Street, where police officers can be seen trying to keep the peace.

Readers from UCL will be proud to know that King’s College failed to get their hands on Phineas, who survived the confrontation safe and sound.

British Pathé have uploaded their entire archive of 85,000 historic newsreels on to YouTube for the first time. Another clip shows UCL students celebrating 100 years since the college’s foundation with a Guy Fawkes’ night bonfire in the quad.