Home    Topics    Memorials    Miscellany    Transcripts    References    Family History    Glossary    Latest    Beeston Blog    About us          Site Search   

1841 Occupations1851 Occupations1861 Occupations1871 Occupations1881 Occupations1891 Occupations
Choose an Analysis

Occupations - AllOccupations - MaleOccupations - Female

Occupations in Beeston, April 1871

Industry GroupOccupation Group  Total Population Heads of Household  Wives
.Land Services2.440.330.0
ManufactureMfr/W-sale - Food/drink.1468.550.0
.Mfr/W-sale - Other.583226.16160.1
.Labour - General3.26260.19190.0
MiningQuarry, etc5.330.110.0
.Gloves, etc10.000.000.0
.Other textile.1064.330.0
TradeRetail - food/drink.60537.44413.1
.Retail - other.332112.16133.2
.Total Employed.1587949638.67359677.115
.Own Means13.32230.15213.1
.At School.634309325.000.0
.Not Employed.882193689.20317.461
.Overall Total.313514531682.708601107.577

The table shows the pattern of employment in Beeston in April 1871, which may be compared with similar tables for 1861 and 1851. Overall, it is clear that the population had remained virtually static over these 20 years and, indeed, since 1861, it had dropped slightly (by 56 to 3135 - a fall of just under 2%).

Not surprisingly, this global static picture masks some relatively significant changes in the detailed make-up of the overall figures. The ratio of females to males continued their upward trend; now the number of females had reached 16% more than males overall (from 13% in 1861 and 10% in 1851) This requires further study, but may reflect a tendancy for young males to seek work elsewhere but also, in part, reflects a significant increase in female domestic servants (mostly from outside of Beeston), from 118 in 1851 and 146 in 1861 - with an overall increase over the whole 20 years of 80%. There was, too, a major shift in the proportion of children attending school - now almost all those of school age - such that, by 1871, 20% of the population was attending school (compared to 14% in 1861 and 12% in 1851). Another trend that continued, was the drop in the number of working wives, now 115 - down 34 (23%) from 1861 and down 57 (33%) since 1851.

There were also significant changes in the detail of those in work:
  • The proportion of the working population in the textile industry, now at only 43% (41% of working males, 45% of working females), has continued to drop
    This is large decrease in both absolute terms (682, down from 952 in 1861 and 1108 in 1851) and in the proportion of those working (was 57% - 53% male, 64% female in 1861 and was 64% - 60% male, 71% female in 1851). The industry was employing 426 (38%) less people than it was 20 years earlier in 1851.
  • Now, only 34% of all household heads were dependant on the textile industries (compared with 46% in 1861 and 50% in 1851.
  • Much of the decrease in textile work is reflected in the lace industry which saw a drop of those employed in the trade of 149 (111 males and 38 females) since 1861 (down 36% - 37% male, 34% female). Since 1851 there had been an even higher drop - down 38% overall - 36% male, 43% female.
    There is, however, a smaller decrease in the number of heads of household dependant on the industry (down 51 (29%) since 1861 and only 17 (12%) since 1851) which may indicate a disproportiate lesser number of younger people entering the trade. The number of wives working in the trade dropped dramatically, though from a much smaller base; now at 22, this was 26 (54%) less than in 1861 and 11 (33%) less than 1851.
  • The lace industry now employed only 16% of the working population (compared to 25% in both 1861 and 1851). Now, only 20% of males were employed in the trade compared with 30% in 1861 and 1871. For females, it was only 11%, down from 17% in both 161 and 1851.
  • The decrease in numbers in the textile industries was also evident in the silk trade, where there was a decrease in workers overall of 65 (19%) over the last 10 years and 108 (28%) since 1851. However, the decrease since 1861 was entirely amongst female workers, with the number of male workers showing a small increase - of 6 (6%) - and the number of househol heads also showing an increase - up 26 (96%). These significant demographic changes probably reflects the changes following a greater availability of educational opportunities (together with changes in legislation) leading to less dependance on child labour and, conversely, lack of other opportunities leading to older workers remaining at or turning to the mill.
  • The number working in hosiery and glove knitting continued to decline and was now only 112 compared with 151 in 1861 and 279 in 1851. In fact, no person now described themselves as a glove knitter. The trade now represented only 7% of the working population compared with 16% 20 years earlier.
  • Other miscellaneous employment sectors showed some sign of picking up the fallout from the traditional, but apparently declining. employment sectors. These included food and other manufacturing (more than doubled since 1861 but from a small base) and transport (a 63% increase) with a big increase in rail employment being offset by reductions on the canal.
Behind these overall facts - which themselves beg many questions - we might expect to be able to discover evidence relating to industry trends, the effect of immigration and emigration on the workforce and of social trends - including the employment of women and children. Later, we would hope to study more detailed social trends, such as birth and death rates, family size, etc.

As a start, we have prepared a breakdown of the population by gender and age. To view these, choose from the following options:

Click to view our analysis of the male population by Age and Occupational Groupings in 1871 (and in 1851, or 1861)

Click to view our analysis of the female population by Age and Occupational Groupings in 1871 (and in 1851, or 1861)

Return to the Top of this Page

Notes on Methods :This, and other analyses of the Beeston census, have been prepared from the author's database of Beeston database which includes transcriptions of all available censuses. The author's own industry and occupational classifications have been used; these attempt to present an analysis based, wherever possible, entirely on industrial groupings and without, for example, considerations of social class14; in particular, ancillary workers (such as factory engine drivers, clerks, managers, etc) have been included in the respective industry totals as it is felt that this reflects more accurately the effect of that industry on the local economy - although the numbers involved are relatively small. Another example of the effect of this is that station masters, railway engine drivers, railway booking clerks and station porters would all be classified in the "Transport:Railway" as they all contribute to running the railway and are working in that role because of the existence of that railway. In particular, the analysis attempts to avoid factors relating to social class - such as those included to some degree by Tillott15 and by Armstrong16 in studies elsewhere. Analysis by this dimension will be attempted separately at another time.

The figures for "Wives" only include those who are recorded as living with their husbands who are recorded as Head of Household.

Notes on occupation groupings
1Includes masons, architects, bricklayers, plumbers, joiners, painters, etc and their apprentices
2Includes gamekeepers, veterinaries, land surveyors, etc
3Labourers not identifiable to a specific industry
4Included to quantify a major industry not present before about 1875
5Includes brickyard workers
6Includes clerks & bookkeepers (except those associated with specific industries), insurance workers, bankers, house agents, etc
7Includes local and state officials, military, police, firemen, tax collectors, etc
8Includes hairdressers, chimney sweeps, piano tuners and others performing services for individuals.
9Includes winders, etc who may be more specifically part of the lace industry
10Those making gloves and similar products, usually on knitting frames; an extension of the hosiery industry
11Includes blacksmiths, shoemakers, cabinet makers, saddlers, printers, tinsmiths, etc and their apprentices
12Includes tailors, dressmakers, bonnet makers, stay makers, shirt makers, etc
13Living on personal wealth, annuities, share and property income, etc

Source References
14Similar to that used by Charles Booth, in 1886 for his social survey, Life and Labour of the People of London - but with much less detail and with an emphasis relative to local occupations.
15P. M. Tillott - who devised a classification used in census analysis by extra-mural classes in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire in the 1960s
16Alan Armstrong, Stability and Change in an English County Town - A Social Study of York 1801-51, Cambridge University Press

© David Hallam - 2012