The Giddy Meadow was the name once  given to the small cluster of houses that  made up the village of Bacup at the end of  the eighteenth century. At this time Bacup  was a small and unimportant place, the  population in 1798 stood at approximately  1,426 with 306 houses situated in and  around the areas of Boston and  Hempsteads with a few cottages in the  Newgate area. Market Street and St James Street were just  areas of agricultural land. The surrounding  hillsides were dotted with farmhouses and  attached cottages where spinning and  weaving took place on handlooms. By 1840  the spinning and weaving once carried out  by families in their own homes had moved to mass production in the 30 mills that had sprung up  along the banks of the River Irwell.   Enclosures and the mechanisation of farming in the Midlands and Southern counties and famine  in Ireland all resulted in the landless people looking for a place to live and, with an abundance of  spare land here, they began to settle in this area.  The population return of 1851 was 10,313, with a rise to 10,965 ten years later. Two years later  in 1863, the population had grown to 14,500 and the houses numbered over 3,300. By 1894 the  population in Bacup including Stacksteads had grown to 23,498, and with a need to provide  accommodation homes were built without a plan, back to back and back to earth and, in some  cases, home was just a one roomed cellar house.   With no backyards, the only door to the world for some faced their neighbours as did the  lavatories and coal places, row upon row of dustbins hugging the walls in monotonous uniformity.  
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