Poverty ‘re-discovered’, the birth of Shelter and housing associations in Birmingham

Poverty ‘re-discovered’ For the two decades following WWII, it was generally assumed that poverty had been largely eradicated by the post-war welfare state and the elimination of mass unemployment. Poverty was regarded as a ‘slight hangover’ from the pre-war years in the wake of the Great Depression. Yet growing evidence in the early 1960s showed … Continue reading Poverty ‘re-discovered’, the birth of Shelter and housing associations in Birmingham

‘Race’ and housing associations

Studies of ‘race and housing’ stretch back to the 1960s. These studies have revealed structural racism in the housing system overall, with the level of housing stress in minority ethnic communities much higher than for whites. Research has also underscored how minority ethnic communities fare less well in accessing the social housing sector. This article … Continue reading ‘Race’ and housing associations

The 1950s – Housing associations accommodating ‘special needs’ and ‘communities of interest’

Plugging the ‘gaps’ From the late 1940s and throughout the 1950s, as housing associations recovered from bomb damage to their properties and a six year hiatus in building activity, they found ‘gaps’ in housing provision where they could operate and continue to expand. These ‘gaps’ provided existing housing associations (including the great endowed trusts stretching … Continue reading The 1950s – Housing associations accommodating ‘special needs’ and ‘communities of interest’

New housing associations in the early 1960s

The first half of the 1960s saw a new wave of housing associations created to take advantage of emerging and innovative funding opportunities. This period represented the first significant foundation of new associations since the formation of housing societies in the 1920s and 1930s, which were supported by two Housing Acts in 1961 and 1964. … Continue reading New housing associations in the early 1960s

‘Women in the Housing Service’ – historical perspectives

On this International Women’s Day 2020, it is worth marking a major historical study of women’s contribution to housing management, service delivery and development, and their role in founding housing associations. Published 25 years ago, ‘Women in the Housing Service’ by Marion Brion, a housing manager, researcher and academic, tracked and dissected women’s contribution to … Continue reading ‘Women in the Housing Service’ – historical perspectives

Women living in housing association housing

On this International Women’s Day 2020, it is perhaps worth considering the extent to which housing associations offer general needs housing options to women. In fact, women now form the majority of people living in HA housing: Six in 10 HA tenant households are headed by a woman, according to the English Housing Survey over … Continue reading Women living in housing association housing

Deep Roots – The History of the BME Housing Sector

This extended new blog looks at the history of black and minority ethnic (BME) housing associations to mark Black History Month in October 2019, placing their development in historical context. ‘Race and Housing’ Issues in Modern History ‘Race and housing’ issues have been a major element in housing research and policy discourse for at least … Continue reading Deep Roots – The History of the BME Housing Sector

Housing associations can also claim the Addison Act 1919 as an embarkation point

Even though the Housing and Town Planning Act 1919 is viewed as the starting point for mass council-house building, it is often forgotten that the Addison Act, named after housing ministers Sir Christopher Addison, also provided opportunities for the housing associations of the day. Housing societies or trusts as they were then more commonly called … Continue reading Housing associations can also claim the Addison Act 1919 as an embarkation point

Historic mission of housing associations was always ‘more than bricks and mortar’ – although with a streak of paternalism

An important debate has sprung up on social media in recent times about whether HAs should be involved in activities beyond the provision of affordable housing and housing services. In particular, this debate has centred upon whether HAs should offer their tenants support to move into employment, and the legitimacy of today’s HAs in pursuing … Continue reading Historic mission of housing associations was always ‘more than bricks and mortar’ – although with a streak of paternalism