|About the Book|
In July 1991, the London Docklands Development Corporation celebrated ten years of urban renewal in Londons East End. But what have been the human consequences for the people who live there? Dr David Widgery has lived and worked as a doctor in East London for the last 20 years and now practices in the shadow of Canary Wharf. This is an account of the suffering, deprivation and neglect endured by ordinary East Enders who were passed over in both the LDDC and the 1980s boom. He graphically shows the medical and personal consequences of prolonged unemployment, homelessness and poverty. From labour ward to death bed, in sickness even more than health, lifes possibilities are still delineated by social class. Yet, despite the deprivation, East Enders, old and new, retain the Cockney virtues of solidarity, warmth and humour. Dr Widgery argues that a GP is as much a witness as an executant - a privileged observer of pain endured, private sadness and jubilant recovery. This book blends scientific and medical analysis with sketches from his medical notebooks. The author also wrote The Left in Britain 1956-68, Health in Danger, Beating Time, The National Health and Preserving Disorder.