Palaces for the People

Palaces for the People : Prefabs in Post-war Britain

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Devised as temporary housing after World War II, prefabricated homes fitted with all 'mod cons' represented the new way of living in post-war Britain. The fact that war-damaged aircraft were melted down to produce them and that POWs assisted construction, only helped to make the prefab a symbol of Britain rising from the ashes of war. And for the first time many found themselves living in well-designed accommodation with fitted kitchens, hot running water, new electric appliances, and an inside bathroom. Prefabs turned out to be more durable and popular than anyone could have foreseen, and these tiny palaces for the people became icons of post-war regeneration. Palaces for the People highlights the history of the homes built under the Temporary Housing Programme 1944-49, as well as two-storey prefabs such as the British Iron and Steel Corporation houses and Airey homes, and modular homes erected by London County Council. It illustrates construction methods, interiors, furnishings and gardens with a rich collection of photographs from original prefab residents, published here for the first time.
It will be of interest to admirers of these temporary homes, and to all who wish to know more about the social history of British housing.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 160 x 160 x 17mm | 410g
  • Batsford Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 140 colour and b/w halftones
  • 0713488239
  • 9780713488234

About Greg Stevenson

Dr Greg Stevenson works as an architectural heritage consultant and lectures at the University Of Wales, Lampeter. The author of the popular titles The 1930s Home and Art Deco Ceramics, his next project will be to save an Arcon prefab and rebuild it on his land as an unusual holiday let.
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