Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-cf9d5c678-j7tnp Total loading time: 0.762 Render date: 2021-08-03T14:20:26.040Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

The Wobbly Pillar? Housing and the British Postwar Welfare State

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 October 2003

PETER MALPASS
Affiliation:
UWE, Bristol, BS16 1QY email: Peter.malpass@uwe.ac.uk

Abstract

The image of housing as the wobbly pillar under the welfare state has been widely used in recent years, and is clearly an attractive metaphor in the present period as residualisation deepens and privatisation continues. However, this paper is concerned with the early years of the postwar welfare state, when conditions for a securely founded housing service were, arguably, more conducive than they are today. Accordingly the paper focuses on policy work in the 1940s, drawing on new research on Public Record Office files, to reveal the amount of wartime planning within Whitehall for postwar housing policy, and the extent of continuity between the pre and post 1945 periods. It is shown that under the wartime coalition government there was considerably more planning for housing after the war than is acknowledged in the existing literature, and that this work shaped policy under the Labour government of 1945–51. Housing emerged as the wobbly pillar under the welfare state because of the amount of detailed wartime planning and Labour's acceptance of its analysis and prescriptions. Whereas most accounts concentrate on the size of the late 1940s building programme (and judge the government accordingly), the argument here is that to understand how housing emerged as the wobbly pillar it is necessary to look beyond quantity to the question of why a self-proclaimed socialist government failed to challenge the market dominance of housing provision.

Type
Article
Copyright
© 2003 Cambridge University Press

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)
25
Cited by

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

The Wobbly Pillar? Housing and the British Postwar Welfare State
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

The Wobbly Pillar? Housing and the British Postwar Welfare State
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

The Wobbly Pillar? Housing and the British Postwar Welfare State
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *