London Estates: Modernist Council Housing 1946-1981


Product Description

The UK’s landmark Housing Act of 1919 catalyzed the rapid development of state-owned public housing in planned council estates. Construction of these estates has largely ceased since the Thatcherist austerity policies of the ’80s. Fast-forward a few decades and the estates have met various fates; some council estates are now considered notorious, while others are arguably the most desirable places to live in London.

As the most comprehensive photographic document of the London council estates, this book features 275 estates from the City and every borough. A huge range of architectural styles are represented: from prefabricated and “self-built” schemes to Modernist and Brutalist designs, including over 30 protected historic buildings. There are designs from a broad range of architects, including Denys Lasdun, Erno Goldfinger, Basil Spence and many more. Kate Macintosh’s ziggurat-inspired Dawson’s Heights (1972) shares space with Chamberlin, Powell & Bon’s primary-colored tower Golden Lane Estate (1962). From the paltry to the posh, each estate possesses a fascinating history, and is emblematic of a distinct vision of urban planning. This book celebrates London council estates in all their diversity—championing the neglected alongside the distinguished, and honoring their immeasurable contribution to the social and architectural fabric of the capital.

Hardcover; 304 pages