Why was urban over-crowding much more severe in Scotland than in the rest of the British Isles? Evidence from the first (1904) official household expenditure survey.

Gazeley, Ian, Newell, Andrew and Scott, Peter (2011) Why was urban over-crowding much more severe in Scotland than in the rest of the British Isles? Evidence from the first (1904) official household expenditure survey. European Review of Economic History, 15 (1). pp. 127-151. ISSN 1361-4916

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Abstract

This article presents an analysis of British urban working-class housing conditions in 1904, using a rediscovered survey. We investigate overcrowding and find major regional differences. Scottish households in the survey were more overcrowded despite being less poor. Investigating the causes of this overcrowding, we find little support for supply-side theories or for the idea that the Scottish households in our survey experienced particularly great variations in income, causing them to commit to overly modest accommodation. We present evidence that is consistent with idea that particularly tough Scottish tenancy and local tax laws caused excess overcrowding. We also provide evidence that Scottish workers had a relatively high preference for food, rather than housing, expenditure, which can be at least partly attributed to their inheritance of more communal patterns of urban living.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Depositing User: Ian Gazeley
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:01
Last Modified: 22 May 2013 14:37
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/23607
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