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9. A BONANZA TIME

There was a tremendous amount of rebuilding to be done. London became a sort of Klondyke for every branch of the building industry. And there were fortunes to be made.

 

10. GOVERNMENT HELP

The government even intervened with financial help. This was not to happen again until 1919 when the first government housing subsidies were introduced. A special tax was levied on the sale of coal. One third of the proceeds went towards building St. Paul's Cathedral; one third to providing newparish churches. What was left was used to help private householders.

 

 

11. THE NEW HOUSES

And so the new city of London was built. The government regulations and Christopher Wren's genius ensured that a new type of dwelling appeared in England - the plain fronted terraced house. At first these houses were built in red brick; later yellow bricks came into use.

12. PROPERTY RIGHTS

Each owner jealously protected the area of his site. So London was not to have the boulevards and handsome vistas of continental cities.

If private enterprise doomed Wren's dreams of a fine, new city, it did ensure that the rebuilding was done quickly. 10,000 houses were erected in less than 8 years.

13. PUBLIC SQUALOR

Where private property interests were not affected, things moved more slowly.

A tremendous amount of debris had to be moved from the fire ravaged city. It was carted away and dumped in huge piles outside the city walls.

One huge mountain of rubble, over 50 ft. high, was stacked in Whitechapel. It was nearly 150 years before it was moved.

14. A FRENCHMAN'S SUMMING UP

Opportunities were missed, but the new London was a cleaner, healthier place than the old city.

The great French writer, Voltaire, commented "London did not become a great city until it had been burned down".

15. ACROSS EUROPE

Across Europe another new capital city was to be built.

Moscow had been the capital of Russia. But Moscow and Russia had suffered terribly in the 1600s -as in so much of their history - from invasion and mad rulers.

Because of so many calamities, Moscow's population had stayed static - at 150,000 - for over 100 years.

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