Front cover of Courts and Alleys with a black and white photograph of several families gathered in their communal courtyard.

Courts and Alleys: A history of Liverpool courtyard housing

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Courts and Alleys: A history of Liverpool courtyard housing by Elizabeth J. Stewart.

The people of overcrowded Victorian Liverpool often lived in 'miserable abodes' according to contemporary accounts. These homes, known as 'courts and alleys' provided accommodation for thousands of people from the eighteenth to twentieth centuries. As Liverpool's population soared in the eighteenth and especially nineteenth centuries, the demand for new housing was high, and court housing largely filled that need.

Court housing was a form of high-desnity back-to-back housing around courtyards. Contemporary descriptions highlight the cramped, dark and often damp conditions in these houses. This book uses a range of historical and archaeological evidence about courts to consider their development, life within them and the measures eventually taken to rid Liverpool of them. This book considers courts and their impact on people's lives in Liverpool for over 250 years.

Elizabeth J. Stewart is curator of Archaeology and the Historic Environment at the Museum of Liverpool.


Format: Paperback, 116 pages

Dimensions: 19 x 24.5 x 0.9cm

Publisher: Liverpool University Press

ISBN: 9781786942111


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