DescriptionThe health perils associated with working in the Lancashire cotton mills are well recorded. Dust and dirt filled the atmosphere causing respiratory problems including byssinosis. Operatives faced additional respiratory problems including tuberculosis, bronchitis and pneumonia, as well as industrial deafness. Into the 1950s and beyond, manufacturers remained reluctant to invest in new technologies, including those that could have alleviated some of the health risks without slowing production. Instead, workers had to manage the unhealthy working environment themselves. Consequently, they adopted numerous strategies to prevent or manage the hazards of the workplace. Starting with the peak years of the Lancashire cotton industry in the decades surrounding 1900, through the decades of industrial decline after the Great War, this paper traces some of the strategies, the DIY PPE, Lancashire workers’ utilized to manage the unhealthy working environment. It argues that workers’ individual and collective innovation and strategies enabled them to manage their health and ill health, but which also enabled many to remain working in the industry.
|Period||18 Nov 2022|
|Degree of Recognition||National|
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article › peer-review
When the Air Became Important: A Social History of the New England and Lancashire Textile Industries
Research output: Book/Report › Book