London - The Swinging Sixties is considered the UK's most defining era of the 20th century.

Britain's young generation took the Western world by a storm as it pioneered new trends in fashion, music and art.

London, called the Capital of Cool, was at the heart of that cultural revolution.

A new exhibition at the city's Victoria & Albert Museum is exploring those iconic sights and sounds from 1966 to 1970.

"The whole atmosphere was different," Maldwin Drummond, a British author, told Al Jazeera as he fondly remembered that era.

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"There was a form of sexual freedom enjoyed not only by men, but by girls as well. Everything went and you could almost do anything. There was much more freedom than there is today."

Curators of the exhibition believe the 1960s served as a catalyst for social change and greater freedom at a pinnacle time.

"It was still perfectly legal in this period to pay women less for doing exactly the same job as the men. That was incredible," says Victoria Broackes, the museum curator.

"You could only get the Pill if you were a married woman, abortion was illegal and theatre was still censored."

Organisers hope visitors, especially the young ones, will be inspired by the 50-year-old message of love and joy and translate it to the present world.

Source: Al Jazeera News