WW ll
Roman Britain
Saxon Britain
Viking Britain
Norman Britain
Tudor Britain
Victorian Britain
World War Two
500 BC
AD 43
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How can we find out what life was like during the Victorian times?


The quality of life depended on whether you were rich or poor. If you were rich you could have a good and easy life. But if you were poor you could have a rough and hard life, often ending up in the workhouse or early death.

Family Life | Religion | Food | Money | Clothes

Read about what life was like for children

Find out about workhouses

Find out about factories

Victorian Homes

Victorian Houses

Victoria What was Family life like during the
Victorian times?

image: VictorianHow many children did a normal Victorian family have?

Families were usually large, in 1870 many families had five or six children.

What did child call his/her father?

Each member of the family had their own role and children were taught to "know their place" and "be seen and not heard". They called their fathers 'sir'.

Who did the house work in rich people’s houses?

All households except the very poorest had servants to do their everyday work.


Victoria Religion

Region was very important to the Victorians. A great number of people went to church, at least once and probably twice, every Sunday.

Victoria Food

At the beginning of the Victorian period, people relied on the foods that were in season and available locally or those which had been pickled or preserved. Later, when the railways were built, many new and fresh foods to the towns and cities. The invention of the steam ship, and of transport refrigeration, meant that also meat, fish and fruit could be imported from overseas quite cheaply.

There were no fridges and freezes in the homes to keep food for a long time, so meals were limited by the available local food supply or food which had been pickled or preserved.

People did not buy their food in a supermarket instead they went to several small shops, all selling different types of food. Grocers’ shops sold dried goods such as tea, coffee, sugar and rice; butchers’ shops sold meat; and dairy shops sold milk, cream, eggs, butter and cheese.

Basic foods were: beef, mutton, pork, bacon, cheese, eggs, bread, potatoes, rice, oatmeal, milk, vegetables in season, flour, sugar, treacle, jam and tea.

Victoria Money

Pounds (£)
Shillings (s.)
Pence (d.)

Find out more about money

Victoria Clothes

Find out about clothes


VictoriaWe can learn about the Victorians in various ways:

Through buildings
We can still see some of their buildings. Many of our town halls and libraries were built during the Victorian times. (Find out about Victorian houses)

Through railways
Enormous railway stations remind us that railway was new and an important form of transport.

Through maps and documents
We can study Victorian maps and documents, such as the forms that were filled in during the census.

Through photographs
Photography was invented during Victoria's reign, so people could now record on film what daily life was like.


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Woodlands Junior School, Hunt Road Tonbridge Kent TN10 4BB UK