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Sanitary Act 1866

Where the Public Health Act 1848 had been permissive, the Sanitary Act 1866 made it compulsory for local authorities to improve sanitary conditions and remove nuisances to public health. Under the Act, overcrowding in residences became illegal and local authorities were required to take responsibility for ensuring sewerage systems were in place.

Also as prescribed by the Act, every town was required to appoint sanitary inspectors. Furthermore, the government was empowered to intervene and remove health hazards where local authorities failed to do so.

The Act established the definition of overcrowding and required all houses to be connected to a main sewer.


Bloy M.
Victorian Legislation: A timeline.
The Victorian Web; 2014.

Baggott R.
Public Health: Policy and Politics.
St Martin's Press; 2000.