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DICIEMBRE 18

London Travel Guide

The Nineteenth Century



In the 19th century period London was declared capital of the British Empire, became a global political, financial, and trading capital, but also London was a city of poverty, where millions lived in overcrowded and unsanitary slums.

In 1829 Robert Peel as the prime minister established the Metropolitan Police as a police force covering the entire urban area. The force gained the nickname of "bobbies" or "peelers" named after Robert Peel.

New metropolitan railways were created and the new network allowed to development of suburbs in neighboring counties from which middle-class and wealthy people could commute to the centre. The first railway was a line from London Bridge to Greenwich, opened in 1836. Shortly was created the great rail termini that linked London to every corner of Britain.

New urbanizations like Islington, Paddington, Belgravia, Holborn, Finsbury, Shoreditch, Southwark and Lambeth was formed and with the fast growth of the population and the urbanizations caused some sanitary problems in the city, the pumping of residual waters towards the Thames cause “The Great Stink” in 1858, which contaminated its waters, the same that were consumed by the settlers, reason why one of the first actions of the Metropolitan Board Of Work were the construction of a massive sewage system, previous consent of the Parliament. The number of deaths and epidemics by cholera and other diseases were reduced substantially. The work was supervised by Joseph Bazalgette and his work still is used nowadays.

During this period, London became in one of the most attractive cities of Europe, reason why many immigrants came from different parts from Europe and Asia, especially Irish who in majority were refugees from the Irish potato famine arrived at London and conform the 20% from the population, also the Jewish community were established, and small Chinese and Asian groups occupied the south of the city too.

In 1888 the County of London was established, replacing to the Metropolitan Board of Work, the county was administered by an administrative body that were chosen for first time in London’s history.

During this one period several famous buildings were constructed.
  • Trafalgar Square
  • Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament
  • The Royal Albert Hall
  • The Victoria and Albert Museum
  • Tower Bridge


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