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A Brief History Of The Home: Post War (1945-Present)


The last 70 years have seen architecture develop with unprecedented imagination. Of course, the modern started back in the late C.19th and, following the horrific hiatus of WWII, Le Corbusier’s Cité radieuse (Marseille, 1952, and the first of his Unités d’habitation), re-energised and re-asserted the movement. From that point, (nearly) anything went…

In England, the immediate concern of post-war house builders was understandably quantity rather than quality – more than 2million houses had been destroyed including 1million during The Blitz. Cheaper, faster materials and techniques (including non-traditional construction) came to the fore – which explains why a building of that period may be in more need of attention than its pre-war neighbour…

In the 1950s rendered blockwork became an alternative to brick; then timber framed houses, clad in brick, stone or render, became commonplace and the last 20 years has seen the exponential rise of extensions – some designed in dramatic contrast to the original (older) building, many others to compliment it. While the former requires a detailed understanding of new building techniques and materials, the latter requires a skilled and practical appreciation of historic building methods, mentioned previously, to ensure a seamless and sympathetic merger.

Throughout this period, larger individual houses were and, course, continue to be, built. But we can’t talk of modern houses in the generic way we can of Victorian, Edwardian or 1930s’ homes. Our expertise lies in meeting the requirements of such a variety of building types, demonstrating that craftsmanship is as necessary to today’s recent and new builds as to any other. Brickwork always looks better and lasts longer when pointed correctly; render, whether plain, coloured, textured or acrylic, needs to be chosen and applied with artistic and technical skill; stone, stucco and concrete cleaned or repaired with expert care. Whatever its architectural roots, whatever its age, whatever its construction, the Modern House is demanding.