30 Sep 2007 06:31 UTCSun 30 Sep 2007 - 6:31 am UTC
Plus any other examples that will illustrate what could be bought for this sum.
Obviously, Phil, I am not going to tell you the relevance of this question ...
I don't want to make it too easy for you, especially after you have again skived off 'for a few days'.
1 Oct 2007 12:43 UTCMon 1 Oct 2007 - 12:43 pm UTC
Our lady of the night seemed to be mixing with the upper echelons of society, so perhaps she would have picked up some expensive chocolate tastes.
Should could have bought some Fry’s Milk Cubes at 1/2 per ½ lb block, or ½lb packets of Fry’s Milk Chocolate at 1/2 each, or bars of Meltis chocloate priced at 4d, 8d, and 1/3 (the latter ½lb net.). At afternoon tea, she could treat herself to Frott’s chocolate biscuits at 3/6 a tin. At Easter she could have popped down to Harrod’s and treated herself to a 1lb chocolate egg packed with all different chocolates, cost 5/-; or an Easter basket filled with chocolate eggs and decorated with chicks and spring flowers.
If she felt out of place in Harrod’s and wanted to mix with her own class, she could have gone to the cheaper end of the range and popped into the corner shop and purchased 5/- worth of ½ penny chocolate pieces - each a small cube of chocolate.
If she’d rather concentrate on the business of just surviving, the common food prices I’ve seen quoted were as follows:
Loaf of bread 8d - 8½d for a large loaf
Milk 6d a quart
Danish butter 2/2 a lb.
New Zealand butter 1/10 a lb.
Lamb 2/- a lb.
Mutton 1/2 a lb.
Sirloin of Scotch beef 1/9 and topside 1/8 a lb.
Cod 1/2 a lb.
Halibut 1/2 to 1/6 a lb.
Rent is difficult to establish as locations and types of property varied greatly, but I think 7/- to 12/- a week would not be unreasonable for her station in life.
A social night out might cost 13/6 for a bottle of good Scotch, cheaper for a rough brand; while Players No3 cigarettes were 20 for 1 /4 - a few pence cheaper for the rougher brands 9d - 11d. Beer at 6d a pint.
If she fancied a night at the pictures, she could go to the Tivoli in the Strand WC2 to see Scaramouche. The cheaper seats at 1/3, and 8/6 for the posh ones.
She could always go to the Opera and perhaps pick up some new friends. At the Regent, King’s Cross, to see The Immortal Hour, cost 1s to 8/6.
A trip to the Zoological gardens cost 1s, but it was cheaper on Mondays at 6d.
She could go and visit the British Empire Exhibition. A special combined return railway ticket and admission cost 2/9 third class and 3/9 first class (20 miles radius of Wembley Hill Station).
Getting around London by omnibus is shown in these examples: Marble Arch to Piccadilly 2d, Charing Cross to Mitcham 6d, Southall to Victoria 9d. Taxi-cabs had varying rates but initial hire cost 9d, and then various rates per mile and dependent on number of passengers. Railway fares were 1½d a mile for third class passengers
Finally, if standing out in the Hyde Park night air made her feel unwell and she caught Influenza, a bottle of Wincarnis which ‘fortifies the body‘ cost 5/-.
And having given up that occupation because of ill-health she became a zealous reformer, she could purchase six ‘useful booklets for Girls on how Venereal Diseases are caught’ at 1/5 for set and hand them out to her former associates.
I have used the Times database for the vast majority of this research.
I hope I have provided everything you require. Do ask for clarification if I have not.
1 Oct 2007 13:22 UTCMon 1 Oct 2007 - 1:22 pm UTC
Thank you for your generous tip. An interesting exercise.