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Key Texts

Seminar Questions

  • How adequate was the response in this period to the housing problems of the urban poor?
  • "The Victorian suburb meant more culturally than it did physically". Discuss.
  • Were the model villages of nineteenth-century Britain a solution to the problems of housing the labouring classes or a reflection of the problems?
  • How important was early state housing in improving living conditions for the masses?


Housing and Welfare (Modern Records Centre online resource)

Further Reading: General

D Cannadine, Lords and Landlords: the Aristocracy and the Towns 1774-1967

J Burnett, A Social History of Housing 1815-1970

M Daunton, Coal Metropolis: Cardiff 1870-1914

N Evans, ‘The Welsh Victorian City: the middle class, civic and national consciousness in Cardiff’, Welsh History Review, 1983

J Melling (ed.), Housing, Social Policy and the State

R Pritchard, Housing and the Spatial Structure of the City: Residential Mobility and the Housing Market in an English City since the Industrial Revolution

R Rodger, Housing in Urban Britain 1780-1914: Class, Capitalism and Construction

M Swenarton, Homes Fit For Heroes: The Politics and Architecture of Early State Housing in Britain

F M L Thompson, Hampstead. Building a Borough 1650-1964

Model Villages

Port Sunlight

Saltaire - Visit Bradford site

Saltaire - Saltaire Village site

Plan of Saltaire housing (Modern Records Centre Online resource)

G Darley, Villages of Vision

W L Creese, The search for environment: the garden city before and after

Daniel Maudlin, 'Robert Mylne, Thomas Telford and the architecture of improvement: the planned villages of the British Fisheries Society, 1786–1817', Urban History, 2007

Ian C Bradley, 'Titus Salt: Enlightened Entrepreneur', in Gordon Marsden (ed.), Victorian Values: Personalities and Perspectives in nineteenth-century society

S Pollard, ‘The Factory Village in the Industrial Revolution’, English Historical Review, 79, 1964

W Ashworth, The Genesis of Modern British Town Planning

W Ashworth, ‘British Industrial Villages in the nineteenth century’, Economic History Review, 3, 1951

J A Jowitt (ed.), Model Industrial Communities in Mid-Nineteenth century Yorkshire

P Joyce, Work, Society and Politics

T Koditschek, Class formation and Urban-industrial Society: Bradford, 1750-1850

D Roberts, Paternalism in early Victorian England

S Gaskell, Model Housing: from the Great Exhibition to the Festival of Britain

Kathleen Woodroofe 'The Irascible Reverend Henry Solly and His Contribution to Working Men's Clubs, Charity Organization, and "Industrial Villages" in Victorian England', Social Service Review, 1975

Working-class housing

M W Beresford, East End, West End. The Face of Leeds During Urbanisation, 1684-1842

S Chapman, (ed.) The History of Working-Class Housing: A symposium. Studies by Wohl (London), Butt (Glasgow), Beresford (Leeds), Chapman (Nottingham), Treble (Liverpool), Chapman and Barrett (Birmingham), Smith (mainly Rochdale, Milnrow, Middleton), Ball (Ebbw Vale).

M Daunton, House and Home in the Victorian City: Working-Class Housing 1850-1914

H J Dyos, ‘The slums of Victorian London’, Victorian Studies, 11 (1967)

J Foster, ‘How imperial London preserved its slums’, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 3 (1979)

S Gaskell, (ed.), Slums

E Gauldie, Cruel habitations: A history of working class housing

E Hopkins, ‘Working-class housing in the smaller industrial town in the nineteenth century: Stourbridge - a case study’, Midland History, 3 (1978)

A Mayne, 'Representing the Slum', Urban History, 1990

A Mayne, The Imagined Slum (1993) see also the review by Englander in Urban History, 1994

S Muthesius, The English Terraced House

C Pooley, ‘Housing for the poorest poor: slum clearance and rehousing in Liverpool 1890-1918’, Journal of Historical Geography, 11 (1985)

R Rodger, ‘Political economy, ideology and the continuing problem of working-class housing in Britain, 1840-1914’, International Review of Social History, 32 (1987)

J Tarn, Working-Class Housing in Nineteenth-Century Britain

J Tarn, Five Per Cent Philanthropy: an Account of Housing in Urban Areas between 1840 and 1914

D Ward, ‘The Victorian slum: an enduring myth’, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 66 (1976)

D Ward, ‘Environs and neighbours in the "Two Nations": residential differentiation in mid-nineteenth-century Leeds’, Journal of Historical Geography, 6 (1980)

A S Wohl, The Eternal Slum

J Yelling, Slums and Slum Clearance in Victorian London


H J Dyos, Victorian Suburb: a Study of the Growth of Camberwell

H J Dyos and D Reeder, ‘Slums and suburbs’ in Dyos and Wolff (eds), The Victorian City: Images and Reality volume 2

Tristram Hunt, Building the New Jerusalem, part III

D Reeder, ‘A theatre of suburbs: some patterns of development in west London 1801-1911’ in Dyos (ed.), The Study of Urban History

M Simpson and T Lloyd (eds), Middle-Class Housing in Britain

F M L Thompson (ed.), The Rise of Suburbia

Street in Saltaire (Roger Saunders)