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The Littlehampton LibelsA Miscarriage of Justice and a Mystery about Words in 1920s England$
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Christopher Hilliard

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198799658

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198799658.001.0001

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Beach Town

Beach Town

(p.13) 1 Beach Town
The Littlehampton Libels

Christopher Hilliard

Oxford University Press

The chapter surveys post-First World War Littlehampton, a coastal town where tourism and hospitality had overtaken maritime trade, but where coastal shipping and ship-building remained important industries. The libel case unfolded in the Beach Town district, where Littlehampton’s hotels and apartment houses were concentrated. Many of the tradesmen, small businesswomen, labourers, and domestics who serviced the tourism and hospitality industry lived in the neighbourhood. Working from the evidence George Nicholls gathered, census records, and documents in the Littlehampton Museum, the chapter provides an anatomy of the neighbourhood and then examines the families at the centre of the dispute, their economic and social position, and relationships within the household, which were often marked by violence.

Keywords:   labour, housewifery, domestic violence, illegitimacy, respectability, credit, tourism, seaside, community study, neighbours

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