The 19th century was a time of intense change for British people. The industrial revolution saw cities expand rapidly to accommodate an influx of new factory workers, and slums spilled over with poor migrants come from the countryside to seek new opportunities in the big smoke, fighting the cruelest odds to carve out new lives for themselves...
Many of us are descended from those people - at least, from the lucky ones who survived the outrageous infant mortality rate, constant threat of disease, and the murderous gangs to whom your life was worth less than the pennies in your pocket. But how might you have fared in their place?
Now might be your chance to find out. The BBC is hunting for families and individuals to set up home in 1870s East London. Their aim will be to live, work and make ends meet exactly as the Victorian poor would have done (hopefully minus any slit throats of syphilis).
This landmark living history experiment will tell the story of what life was really like for the Victorian poor and how their plight changed our nation for the better. With the help of casting agency Wall to Wall, the BBC are looking for strong, determined contributors who think they could survive life on the Victorian bread line. The series is due to be filmed over three weeks in Easter 2016 and the new Victorians will relocate for the duration of the filming to East London.
Successful volunteers will be expected to find work, master old trades and sell their wares in order to put food on the table and to make the weekly rent. This could be your chance to put a traditional trade to good use, show your children that it actually CAN get worse than having to occasionally switch the TV off and get their homework done, or simply prove to yourself that you have what it takes to tough it out in the slum...
For more details email
firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 020 7241 9228
Would you have UNDERSTOOD your fellow slum dwellers? Take our cockney rhyming slang quiz to find out!