An informative timeline from the Early Georgian period to Today, studying the effects of society on housing and health.

1740-01-01 00:00:00


During the 18th Century London grows larger and denser and the effort required to carry water to the home, especially to the upper floors severely restricts its use so bathing falls out of fashion.

1750-01-01 00:00:00


In the 18th Century many people no longer live and work in the same building. This introduces privacy within the home for the first time.

1780-01-01 00:00:00


During the late 18th Century formality of interiors is replaced by more casual arrangements and a more casual appearance becomes fashionable.

1788-01-01 00:00:00

'The Times' is published in London.

1807-01-01 18:18:51

Britain abolishes the slave trade

1810-01-01 00:00:00


House-building largely done by profit-seeking private builders Long streets of unplanned terraced houses are built.

1810-01-01 18:18:51

Urban migration

Britain’s cities begin to expand on a large scale. Workers and labourers from the surrounding countryside seek work in the cities.

1811-01-01 00:00:00

Wealth, health and the seaside

It becomes more fashionable for polite society to live in seaside towns, particualrly Brighton.

1830-01-01 00:00:00


Gardening becomes socially acceptable for middle class men and women.

1832-01-01 18:18:51

Reform Act

Vote given to middle class men.

1840-01-01 00:00:00


In poorer areas of cities families live in dark and unsanitary squalid housing often without facilities and natural light.

1840-01-01 18:18:51

A regular postal service is in use.

1850-01-01 18:18:51

Middle classes relocation

Prosperous middle classes seek to escape the smoke and smell of industry by moving to new quiet residential areas.

1850-01-30 20:59:15

The popular house type

The preferred house type is the substantial detached or semi-detached villa Twelve rooms or more and sufficient space for servants to live and work separately from the family. Privacy and domestic comfort is of paramount importance to the Victorian middle class household.

1851-01-01 00:00:00

The Great Exhibition

50,000 products exhibited, many of them for the home or building of the home. Brings about a new wave of consumerism in furnishing the home.

1851-01-01 00:00:00

Seperate bedrooms required

Housing reformers begin to advocate separate bedrooms for boys and girls. Houses therefore now required at least two or three separate bedrooms.

1851-01-01 00:00:00

Labouring Classes Lodging Houses Act

Introduces registration for keepers of lodging houses and empowers local authorities to make regulations.

1851-01-30 20:59:15

Increase in commuters

Commuting begins due to railway development and growing middle class demand for suburban areas away from work.

1852-07-25 14:39:11

The Post box is introduced in the Channel Islands.

1857-07-25 14:39:11

Roadside post boxes appear

1860-07-25 14:39:11

Arts & Crafts movement.

1872-07-25 14:39:11

First Mail Order Catalogue

Aaron Montgomery sends the first mail order catalogue in Chicago.

1875-07-25 14:39:11

Liberty & Co. open selling Arts & Crafts furniture.

1875-07-25 14:39:11

Telephone communication

First telephone exchange opens in London.

1875-07-25 14:39:11


Most houses are built privately for rent with virtually no social housing.

1890-07-25 14:39:11


The “bylaw” suburbs of one-family houses becomes the norm.

1890-07-25 14:39:11


London’s local councils begin to build houses.

1890-07-25 14:39:11

Housing the Poor

Efforts are made to build and regulate private common lodging houses that cater for those in most need.

1911-07-25 14:39:11


90% of married women are full time housewives and mothers.

1914-02-06 10:02:37

Owner Occupancy

The 20th Century levels of owner occupancy:

1914-12-10 14:18:45


Women’s magazines and the Women’s Institute appear.

1918-12-10 14:18:45

Slum clearance campaign

Victorian Poor Law, impels people towards respectable domestic standards. Despite campaigning for standards only 11,000 slums are cleared.

1920-12-10 14:18:45


The working day is extended by longer journeys to work...

1920-12-10 14:18:45

‘Homes fit for heroes’

Government’s recognition of the national responsibility to provide homes.

1920-12-10 14:18:45

A rise in consumerism.

1920-12-10 14:18:45

Council Housing

Government legislation requires local authorities to provide council housing...

1921-12-10 14:18:45

Council Housing

Only 17,000 council houses built.

1922-12-10 14:18:45

The First wireless broadcasting

Wireless broadcasting developed during 1880s and 1890s. BBC founded in 1922.

1924-12-10 14:18:45

The 1924 Act

The 1924 act sees 505,000 council homes built. Until this point council houses were only built if the private sector could not meet demands in the area.

1929-07-25 14:39:11

First British television broadcast

1930-12-10 14:18:45


Terraced housing gives way to the semi-detached house. Density changes from 45 dwellings per hectare to 16-30.

1930-12-10 14:18:45

Housing and Consumerism

Up-to-date family housing, with all its associated possessions, makes its own contribution to the “increasingly pervasive influence of middle-class values”.

1933-05-12 05:58:49

Slum Clearance

Authorities required to concentrate on slum clearance. Each has to submit a programme of building and demolition aimed at eliminating slums from their districts.

1939-05-12 05:58:49

Keeping livestock

One in eight town houses and one in three rural houses keep livestock to support the war effort. Mainly feeding pigs from kitchen waste.

1939-05-12 05:58:49


Destruction caused by bombing leads to a house building programme, concentrating on social housing.

1939-05-12 05:58:49

Continued stigma around council estates.

1940-05-12 05:58:49


Housing needs for the elderly population begins to be considered seriously by local councils.

1945-05-12 05:58:49

The home

Postwar Gas & electric meters are moved outside the home as it is no longer guaranteed that a housewife will be at home to let the meter reader in...

1945-05-12 05:58:49


Housing policy central to welfare reforms.

1945-05-12 05:58:49


Temporary Prefabricated Housing programme


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