The house slaves of Victorian Britain

Written to the Daily Express.
Your article on life below stairs was interesting but appeared to slide over one important aspect of such employment. 
  
The section on accommodation gave a hint with its reference to the maids (sic!) being berthed well away from the menservants in the “virgins wing”.
 
My understanding, from conversations with my parents about family History, is that the lower orders found it very difficult to live as married couples and that, as with the slaves portrayed in the TV series “Roots”, such marriages as did happen, were frowned upon and had to be “over the brush”, to avoid the consequent possibility of dismissal.
 
Few servants would have had sufficient savings to do more than barely survive, once dismissed from Service and the threat of moving out of a Grand House into one of the brick favela’s, portrayed in The road to Wigan Pier, would have been sufficient motivation to put up with these Conditions of Employment.
 
The lucky ones, died in service but those who grew too old to maintain their posts, would die destitute in the Workhouse.
 
It is worth remembering that the point of Charles Dickens writing Oliver Twist was not to provide the basis of a hit musical but to shame “Upstairs” folk into giving more thought to how they were treating their fellow man and, at the same time, to express his opposition to the Victorian values, later espoused by Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair.
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