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The Victorians had become addicted to speed and, like all speed crazy kids, they wanted to go ever faster. Time was money and efficiency became increasingly important. Although division of labour had been conceived by Adam Smith and illustrated by a pin factory in The Wealth of Nations in 1776, it could now become fully realised. This specialisation and - by implication - individualisation of labour was in marked contrast to the rural means of production, in which the family was the means of production, consumption and socialisation.
With greater speed came a greater need for industries and businesses to make more and make it quicker. Steam made this possible and changed working life forever. Gone were the days when work was dictated by natural forces: steam engines were servant to neither season nor sunshine. Factories had foremen and life became correspondingly more regimented. The clocking-on machine was invented in 1885 and time and motion studies to increase efficiency would be introduced only some twenty years later. But it was not all bad news. Agricultural incomes depended on variable harvests and weather. Factories provided secure and predictable income, but long hours.
Working life was becoming increasingly regulated, and the working week was reorganised to promote ever-greater efficiency. The old custom of St. Monday - when no work was done - was gradually phased out and to compensate, work stopped around midday on Saturday and did not resume until Monday morning. A new division between 'work' and 'leisure' emerged, and this new block of weekend leisure time coincided with the development of spectator sports like cricket and football, and the rise of music hall entertainment for the new working classes.