Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

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The Museum of Science and Industry Manchester style, History of Housing

Bad living conditions in the industrial revolution Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

inside a house 1800's Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

Ill poor man 1800's Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

This is a mock up of how the some of the working class my have lived in the 1800's
In the final picture the man is ill and all the doctor can say is get some rest

Below is a brief history of how housing in Manchester changed through the 1800's

A major problem of the rapid growth of towns was that population expanded much more quickly than housing stock- The urban poor were forced to make do with crowded, often sordid accommodation. The maximum possible use was made of existing shelter, including cellars and stables.
New housing, built specifically for factory workers, was little better than the old property. Plots of land in the outlying townships of Ancoats, Ardwick and were bought up by builders. They erected densely clustered, small and badly constructed houses. Some houses were built back- to-back so that they were only ventilated on one side. Refuse and excrement tended to collect in the constricted courts and alleys between the houses.
Improvement of housing conditions was an urgent requirement. The 1844 Police Act gave Manchester Corporation authority to deal with a range of social problems. As a result, the building of houses became illegal. The builders responded by putting up flimsy cottages with shallow foundations and walls of a single brick's thickness. There was little progress for thirty years.

White Lion and Long Millgate Courtyard Manchester drawn in the earlier 1800's by James Kay Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

This is a picture drawn by James Kay in the earlier 1800's of the White Lion Long Millgate with pigs roaming freely. He described how pig keeping was common in these days with garbage from the local area being thrown to the pigs. Also there were dung heaps and pigsteys amongst the human dwellings

Houses with fenced cellars Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

A house with a separate cellar dwelling in 1843. The front steps leading to the dwellings were usually fenced off to prevent accidents. Damp cellars usually provided accommodation for more than one family. Houses with fenced cellars can still be seen in Hilton St near Piccadilly.

Cellar Dwelling 1843 Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

The interior of a Manchester cellar dwelling in 1843. This badly repaired dwelling contained little furniture but there are accounts of even greater poverty. Life was certainly worse for the occupants of most common lodging houses. In the lodging houses only sleeping space was provided and even then the same space may be shared by two workers on different shifts

Shared room 1800's Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

This scene showing a family of six living in one room was by no means uncommon. It is not surprising that Leon Faucher observed home has no charm for the operative. After a hasty meal men women and children sally forth to saunter in the streets or lounge in the beer houses

As the city continued to grow, housing problems escalated. In 1867, Manchester City Council obtained a local Improvement Act from Parliament. The Act allowed the Council to close slum properties without compensation to the owners. In 1868, by-laws laying down building regulations for new housing were introduced. The Manchester Act influenced national legislation. A clearance scheme was carried out in Deansgate in 1869 but housing improvement continued to be largely piecemeal

 Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

This photograph shows a view of a semi derelict property built in the late seventeenth century in an area known as Gibraltar near to Red Bank and the river Irk. It was taken around 1877 by James Mudd who was a who was a leading Manchester Photographer. The Appearance of the buildings suggest they may have been condemned as unfit for habitation although there are signs of occupation

Rapid population growth in the 1890s led to severe overcrowding and new houses were needed. The City Council began to build housing in 1891t as part of a major slum clearance programme- At first, it built inner city tenements so that tenants could be near to their workplaces. From 1904 cottage estates were built in the suburbs. Housing standards rose with the increasing stringency of by-law construction regulations

 Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

Victoria Square on Oldham Rd. This was the first block of dwellings built by Manchester City Council. It replaced a group of unhealthy dwellings which were purchased and demolished by the sanitry committee in 1891. Victoria Sqaure now a listed building is a 5 storey tenament block with a central courtyard. On completion in 1894 it contained 237 2 roomed tenaments and 48 1 roomed tenaments providing accommodation for 848 persons

Victoria Square Oldham Rd 2014 Museum of Science and Industry Manchester

Victoria Sqaure as it is in 2014 120 years after completion still in use

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