London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Hackney 1860

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Hackney]

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Mr. Valentine informed me that there has been a far greater
amount of work than usual to obtain the removal of these nuisances;
and I have also paid an unusually large number of visits during the
year. For a list of the chief localities I inspected, and of the house to
house visitations made, I must refer to the Quarterly Reports. To
obtain the removal of so many nuisances it was necessary to require
the attendance before the Board of 81 owners of property, and to
take out summonses against 16. The system of requiring the attendance
before the Board of parties causing or allowing the
continuance of nuisances, has been, therefore, as successful as
The weather during the past year has been most remarkable,
not merely because the average temperature for the summer was
much below the mean of the last 40 years, but because the rainfall
was much larger than usual, and the barometric oscillations
extremely great. Thus, in the month of January the highest temperature
recorded at the Town Hall was 54°.8, and the lowest
27°.5, affording a range of above 27 degrees. In February, the
range was greater than in January, but the highest temperature
recorded was 52°.4 only, whilst the lowest was 23°. The average
temperature for January was 40°.0 ; and for February only 36°.2 ;
and for March 41°.4. The mean of the barometric readings was
only 29.660 inches in January, the average being about 29.900 at
the Town Hall. In February, 29.908 inches; in March, only 29.704
inches. The highest monthly averages were those of July and
October, which were 29.912 inches and 29.908 inches respectively,
whilst the lowest monthly average for the year was that for December,
when the extraordinary small mean of 29.522 inches
occurred. The highest temperature for the year was observed in
May, viz.:—760-4, and the next highest in July, viz.:—75°-6, the
next in June, viz.:—720,2, whilst in July and August, which are
ordinarily the hottest months of the year, the highest temperatures
recorded here were 70°.2 and 70°.6 in each month respectively.
The mean temperature of July and of August was, in each month,
above that of any other month of the year, because the night
temperatures were higher. The mean heat for June, after
allowing for the variation of temperature arising from diminished