From the Whitechapel Board of Works Annual Report for 1878, concerning the Quarter ending 28th September.
The Inspector, Mr. WRACK, on visiting the houses in Miller's-court, Dorset-street, Spitalfields, on the 11th September, found that the ground-floor room of No. 6, was used as a school-room during the day and as a sleeping-room at night. At the time of his visit there were 19 persons in the room, namely, 17 children, all under 7 years of age, and the schoolmaster and his wife.
The dimensions of this room were 12 x 12 x 8 [feet], giving only about 60 cubic feet for each person.
The court contains six houses, and is about 50 feet long, 5 feet 6 inches wide at the north end, and 7 feet 10 inches wide at the south end, and is approached by a covered entrance 26 feet 4 inches long and 2 feet 10 inches wide. At the north end of the court there are three public privies, and at the south end there is a public dust-bin, both of which are within a few feet of the school-room in question.
On the following day, accompanied by the Inspector, I visited the school, and informed the schoolmaster of the unfitness of the place for a school, and I intimated to him that the room could not be allowed to be so occupied; and I advised him to get a larger room in a healthier locality. The schoolmaster acted upon my advice and removed from the court two days afterwards.
I have had to bring under the notice of the Board, from time to time, several cases of school-rooms similarly overcrowded, and in no instance have I been obliged to take legal proceedings against the occupier, the nuisance being either abated by reducing the number of children attending the school, or by the occupier finding a larger and more commodious room.