SANITARY CONDITION OF PRIVATE HOUSES.
In many houses the over-crowding is very great, each room being occupied by a family. It is usually found too that families with children congregate in the same house, because the parties who occupy houses where there are not any children object to having them introduced, on account of the noise they make and the trouble which they give. The consequence is that some houses have as many as 50 or 60 inmates. There is a clause under the Nuisances Removal Act, sec. 29, by which the Vestry is called on to take proceedings before a Magistrate to abate over-crowding, if it is certified to be such as to endanger health. No prosecutions have been taken under this clause, but it is probable that in future years they may be considered advisable.
Works in progress in this Department [Metropolis Roads Commissioners]
The repaying of the carriage-way and footways in Strutton Ground, from Great Peter Street to Pear Street, the materials for the carriage-way being taken from the Broad Sanctuary. The macadamizing of Grey Coat Place, from Great Peter Street to Rochester Row. The newly paving the footpaths, and macadamizing the roadway, of Johnson Street, from the Horseferry Road to Holywell Street. The macadamizing the roadway of Kensington Place; and The macadamizing a portion of the Broad Sanctuary, near the Westminster Hospital and the Sessions House; this work having been long much needed, on account of the serious inconvenience experienced by the Patients in the Hospital from the noise of the paved carriage-way.
[In the context of a discussion over two-and-a-half miles of what had been formerly turnpike roads, partly paved and partly macadamized]
We advertised, and we had only one response to the advertisement. We tried a second time, and we only had the same offer again, and we were compelled to come to the terms of the party who offered. With respect to the value of property on the line of road, we think that the property, instead of rising in value, is now depreciating. The noise and and turmoil are so great on these 2½ miles of highway, that the houses which three or four years ago let for about £28 a year are now let for £20. They came to us to reduce the rates. Evidence was produced to us of the depreciation, and we had to reduce the rates in consequence of the value of these premises going down. Is that owing to the increased traffic?
—Yes. The traffic is so great that foot passengers will not go along it unless they are actually compelled. Ladies or that class of passengers will not go shopping. (Mr. Eustace.) For instance, a relative of mine, who is a retired tradesman, has actually left the road from the noise and dust, and gone to reside elsewhere. We are compelled to be at great expense in watering our roads twice a day to keep down the dust to make the place at all habitable, otherwise we should suffer very severely in our rating. This is through traffic, and not traffic from which we benefit, but traffic coming from other parts and going to other parts of London.
In the Belgrave Sub-district, several complaints were brought against Marine store dealers, whose premises require constant supervision. Slaughter-houses and butchers’ premises, owing to the state of the weather, and the rapidity with which decomposition took place in meat, contributed so much to annoy several persons, as to cause more inspections than usual. One of the former required frequent visits, in consequence of its being a public slaughter-house. Besides the owner, who killed a great number of pigs, four or five butchers also destroyed sheep; and another pork butcher, from the in-wards, killed 40 or 50 pigs weekly. Besides the evils, in a sanitary point of view, from this excess of business, the noise occasioned by the animals was something terrific. Hitherto it has been usual for the magistrates to grant licenses unconditionally, but in consequence of the preceding case, Dr. Aldis brought the subject before the magistrates, Mr. Thrupp and Colonel Bagot, at the recent Petty Sessions, when the former told two of the butchers that their licenses were to be used only for private slaughtering.