BBC: Last News

Council jailed for helping the poor in forgotten story of the Poplar Rates Rebellion

Introduced to millions of TV viewers as the East London home of TV ­favourite Call the Midwife, Poplar was once also the scene of a rare victory against a heartless government.

The determination of a working class area to overcome hardships in the 1950s and 60s is what makes the BBC drama so compelling.

But life was far worse in Poplar in 1921, before the modern welfare state and National Health Service.

It was an era when squalor and sickness destroyed families. Well-paid jobs were few and far

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