I can't remember if I posted this to the old boards or not, but here are the house rules of The Victoria Home (called Victoria House in this piece) in 1891 from Later leaves by Williams, Montagu Stephen. 1891
He has a lot of interesting things to say about East End 'doss houses' in general in the book, well worth a read.
I know Simon Wood posted something on the old boards about the Victoria Home, from a different source, and it would be nice to have that back again if you are looking in Simon....for those of us interested in the place
Hi Robert, there seem to be a few threads where only one page is cached on google (I'm pretending I know what that means...but I don't really )
I've not posted a few of the threads I've partially recovered because of this...bleedin' annoying!
"The Radstock Victoria Home is a philanthropic effort which involves the separation of the sexes and the infusion of a religious influence.
"It was in 1850 that the Metropolitan Association . . . put up in Spitalfields a building of four floors, providing 234 separate sleeping compartments, 8 ft by 4 ft 6 in, each with a locker and half a window. The tenants received were single men, and they paid 3s a week, which charge included the use of a coffee-room 45 ft by 35 ft, kitchen 46 ft by 21 ft 9 in, lecture room 35 ft by 21 ft 9 in, and reading room 25 ft by 21 ft 9 in. There were also a cook's-shop and bar, with baths and lavatories . . . but after eighteen years' trial the whole place was converted into dwellings for families, the single men never having fully occupied the beds . . . It appears that the cause of failure was the surveillance which was exercised, and which, at that time, labouring men resented. In many respects the attractions offered to them resembled those of the Victoria Home, now flourishing in Commercial-street, where quite as much supervision is enforced.
"It was with a view to ameliorate the condition of the poor that Lord Radstock and other gentlemen, with a purely philanthropic motive, acquired two years since a warehouse of four floors in Commercial-street, at the corner of Wentworth-street, and converted it into a model lodging-house. The success of the venture led to the acquisition of the adjoining premises, and the number of beds now provided is 500. In every respect this lodging-house - the only one of its sort in London - deserves to be imitated. First, its charges are low - viz., 4d for a single bed, or 2s per week; and 6d for a "cabin," or 3s per week. Each bed has two blankets, two sheets, and a quilt; the bedstead is of iron, and a kind of shield at the head affords a certain degree of privacy. The floor space is partitioned into rooms, containing each ten or a dozen beds; whilst in the "cabins" there is only one. A "casual" ward for the reception of newcomers has lately been added, and probationers are transferred thence to floors above. Many of the lodgers are regulars, but some are birds of passage purely. The lavatory, ventilating, and sanitary arrangements are on an enlightened scale. In the common kitchen food may be cooked at the great fire, or obtained at low charges at the bar, a dinner with vegetables for fourpence, or a bowl of soup for a penny. No known bad characters are admitted. Tickets for beds are issued from five p.m. until 12.30 midnight, and after that hour if a man wants to get in he must have a pass. It is by these rules, especially, and by the exclusion of women, that the Victoria Home is so greatly to be preferred to the most modern and "improved" of the lodging-houses which are strictly commercial undertakings."