By Susan D. Pennybacker
The ebook exams the imaginative and prescient of the early London County Council (LCC) and of its leaders, the London Progressives, opposed to its guidelines and achievements. It records struggles to alter social and exertions stipulations, to persuade public tradition and to rent aspiring younger visionaries--both males and women--into white collar jobs. This background has left its mark at the current London political situation--central London govt has been abolished and once more many Londoners are looking to recreate it. either the achievements and the disillusions fostered some time past nonetheless impression the current London obstacle. Attitudes formed via bureacracy and the issues of vested pursuits nonetheless live on.
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Extra info for A Vision for London, 1889-1914: labour, everyday life and the LCC experiment
1 THE WAYS OF LIFE, ASPIRATIONS AND POLITICAL CULTURE OF MEN AND WOMEN ‘BLACKCOATED WORKERS’ As the streets that lead from the Strand to the Embankment are very narrow, it is better not to walk down them arminarm. If you persist, lawyers’ clerks will have to make flying leaps into the mud; young lady typists will have to fidget behind you. 1 Virginia Woolf’s admonishment to the unsuspecting visitor could hardly have seemed misplaced. The conformity and homogeneity of the London ‘lower middle class’ was a subject of contemporary commentary, both literary and sociological.
Within this market, the LCC became a bastion of respectable lower middle class employment. Its service to the metropolis was seen as socially useful, its workforce as the ‘aristocracy of municipal service’ in nation and empire (see Figure 3). And yet LCC employees also inevitably included a diversity of type. Men and women of its white collar staff argued about votes for women in The ways of life 25 Figure 3 LCC staff dinner, 1903 (Greater London Photograph Library, GLRO) the 1890s just as they would argue about arms to Spain in 1936.
In 1900 Fleming spoke about the building of the great Boundary Street Estate in the East End, saluting his colleagues while adding: The efforts of the architects, were, moreover, ably seconded by the great body of skilled artificers who have striven to make this estate a model of good workmanship. 10 While sympathy prevailed, a Fabian-style meritocracy was established at County Hall. The Council devised and refined an elaborate hierarchy of promotional ladders for blackcoated employees in the decades after 1889.
A Vision for London, 1889-1914: labour, everyday life and the LCC experiment by Susan D. Pennybacker