The Plan of Gothic Houses

Whereas Classical and Regency houses had the public rooms on the first floor with bedrooms above, by the middle years of the 19th century the public rooms had moved to the ground floor, the bedrooms were on the first, with servants bedrooms above.

The hall and staircase were therefore both the public face of the house but also the barrier to the private rooms. They had to impress but maintain that separation; architectural details such as archways as well as curtains were used to symbolise and give real privacy.

The kitchen was usually in the basement at this period, before moving to a rear extension in the 1870s.

The ideal mid-Victorian bedroom was light, airy and easy to keep clean.

There was no separate bathroom and very few internal toilets; none in ordinary houses. Instead an outside privy and chamber pots were used.