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

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East Barnet Valley 1920

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for East Barnet]

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infectious disease, and the following statistics were prepared :—
Number of Houses in Lancaster Road 161
Houses inspected during the year 1919 59
Cases of Scarlet Fever notified 4
Cases of Diptheria notified 11
Houses inspected during the year 1920, January to September 72
Cases of Diptheria (same period) 4
Houses inspected since October 1st to date of Report, the
period of my appointment 25
Houses re-inspected and visits made with respect to works
in progress, and the abatement of nuisances 63
Cases of Scarlet Fever notified 1
Cases of Diptheria notified Nil
The area inspected as a result of the Medical Officer of
Health's Report contained some 21 houses; numbered 199 to
225 on the East side and numbered 122 to 128 on the West side.
Houses numbered 199 to 255 are in a reasonable state of repair
and only minor defects were found. The yards were clean, with the
exception of Nos. 215 and 213; verbal notice only being
necessary. On inspection it was found that in six instances,
Fowls, Ducks and Geese were being kept but not as a nuisance,
and appeared to be well kept and clean. The Sanitary conditions
as regards provision of Dust-bins, conditions of Drains
Water supply cisterns, and Water Closets appear very satisfactory,
recent repairs having been carried out. With regard to
Nos. 122, 124, 126 and 128 on the West side. These are a very
poor sample of houses. Work is in hand to bring them up to a
reasonable standard of repair, but I cannot say that the personal
habits of the tenants are such as to take reasonable care of the
apartments; especially so where there are several young children,
and walls and floors are constantly damaged after repair.
The apartments are always in a muddle, and this makes the
interiors appear worse than they actually are. In the majority
of the houses inspected, the homes (though poor) are clean. On
the other hand, the dirty tenant is difficult to deal with and much
tact is necessary in getting any appreciable results, however, by
constant attention and periodical visits, the general tone of the
area is improving, but it will take many months yet, before the
whole of the properties are brought up to a satisfactory standard
on the account of the lack of capital of the Owners, the cost of

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