The following is a note to Chapter 2 of the author's Navvyman.
It all began when Edwin Chadwick sent copies of a pamphlet printed by the Manchester Statistical Society to MPs and the press. The pamphlet was about the way men lived at the Summit (or Woodhead) Tunnel between Manchester and Sheffield. Edward Bouverie, member for Kilmarnock, chaired the Committee as it questioned its way through navvies and truckmasters, contractors and clergy, doctors and the police. It asked a public works Truck Act, more public works police, and accident insurance.
Sir Edwin Chadwick (1800-1889): Journalist, barrister, social reformer, civil servant. Involved in one way or another, with the Poor Laws, the rectory inspectorate, the Ten Hour Act, pensions for servicemen, the Employers' Liability Acts, setting up of the new Civil Service with public exams for would-be bureaucrats, registration of births/deaths and — and above all — public sanitation.
Last modified 19 April 2006