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Starting from the late 18th century, many English landowners and industrialists began building villages to provide housing for their workers and their families close to their workplace. Elsewhere, such type of settlements are known as “company towns”. In Britain they are called “model villages”.

While company towns are usually associated with the mining industry, in Britain model villages are centered around all sorts of industries ranging from soap to chocolate. When they began popping up all over Britain in the 18th and 19th centuries, they sharply contrasted the overcrowded living conditions of British working-class districts of the time. Model villages had higher standards of living with high quality housing, integrated community amenities, open spaces and other attractive physical environments that British workers had seldom access to. They became models—examples for others to follow.

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Houses in Port Sunlight, a British model village. Photo credit: Jorge Franganillo/Flickr

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© Amusing Planet, 2017.


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