Victorian slum built in east London for tv show

The Victorian Slum is filmed in Stratford (C) Wall To Wall Media Limited - Photographer: Joe Sarah

The Victorian Slum is filmed in Stratford (C) Wall To Wall Media Limited - Photographer: Joe Sarah - Credit: BBC/Wall To Wall Media Limited/Joe Sarah

A group of east Londoners are exploring what life was like in the capital more than 100 years ago.

New documentary series The Victorian Slum began on Monday and is filmed in an authentic recreation of a tenement building, where people have given up their modern comforts such as indoor plumbing to live in sparse rooms.

In their quest to understand what life was like for the poor in the richest city on Earth, they are even using outdoor toilets - and some entrepreneurs even try to smoke kippers in there.

The participants, who include Graham Potter and Shazeda Haque, have to earn enough money to put food on the table and pay their weekly rent to the landlord or “doss house” owner.

As a single mother, Shazeda has to face particular financial hardship and social stigma, whilst Graham finds out first-hand the back-breaking labour his forebears had to endure - and what happened to a Victorian family when the breadwinner couldn’t work.


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The Victorian Slum airs on BBC Two on Mondays at 9pm and is available on BBC iPlayer.

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