chapter  4
22 Pages

Nuisance Law and Nuisance Economics

Harrogate in Yorkshire, the setting for Wood v the Improvement Commissioners of High and Low Harrogate was, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as today, a tourist centre famed as a spa based upon its exceptional mineral waters. The spa water has an astonishingly sulphurous taste which makes it virtually undrinkable and, therefore, for some at least, incalculably health-inducing. As the 1840s opened, the two neighbouring and then separate village communities of High Harrogate and Low Harrogate found themselves under pressure to update their local government regimes to provide the civic and urban improvements needed to cope with the rising number of visitors to the area. The expanded Harrogate sewer network sent an increased flow of untreated sewage into the Coppice Beck. During the 1850s and 1860s, the economy of the St Helens area of south Lancashire included important industrial concentrations of glass-making and other manufacturing, collieries and metal smelting and foundries.