Burslem area Ordnance Survey Maps - Cobridge

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Date:1851

Description:Map showing part of Cobridge. On the left of the map is the junction where Leek Road meets Watrloo Road at Cobridge traffic lights.

Why were the maps made?

This series of maps was surveyed by the Ordnance Survey Department in 1851 in accordance with the provisions of the Public Health Act.

The Public Health Act of 1848

As industrialised urban areas became more densely populated the link between poor sanitation and epidemics of serious disease became evident.

Sanitary reform therefore grew as a political issue and during the 1840s parliament began to take the problem seriously, resulting in the act of 1848.

As part of the act a Central Board of Health was set up, whose role was to enforce, regulate and supervise street cleaning, water supply, waste collection and sewage disposal.

Local health boards eventually took over these responsibilities.

At the time Burslem was a growing industrialised area with an increasing population and so was affected by the act.

The main function of these maps was to highlight proposed new drainage for the Burslem area in accordance with the act.

More than just drainage maps

These fascinating maps provide wonderfully detailed information about the layout of Burslem and the surrounding area in 1851.

Included are factories, earthworks, houses, roads, public houses, churches, canals, toll gates and bridges.

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Donor ref:(144/17373)

Source: Potteries Museum & Art Gallery

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