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Title: Ernesettle : everyday life in 'a lovely estate' : post-war council housing and cultural incorporation, 1950-1980
Author: Kolinsky, Hilary
ISNI:       0000 0004 7432 0963
Awarding Body: University of the Arts London and Falmouth University
Current Institution: University of the Arts London
Date of Award: 2016
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Following the end of the Second World War, the late 1940s witnessed a dramatic and rapid transformation in working-class living conditions enacted via the Welfare State, and largely experienced through an enormous expansion in public housing. Ernesettle is a product of this boom. One of seven new estates constructed as part of Plymouth’s programme of reconstruction, it follows a conceptual blueprint laid out in The Plan for Plymouth, a document compiled in 1943 by town planner Patrick Abercrombie and city engineer James Paton-Watson. Designed after a ‘neighbourhood’ model, the Plymouth Plan estates were to provide for life from cradle to grave, incorporating schools, workplaces, clinics, churches, pubs, and shops as well as housing and green space. The progressive social programme propounded by post-war neighbourhood designers strove towards social homogeneity, a strategy that sought to reconcile interests across the class and political spectrum. This thesis examines the results of those ambitions, using oral history accounts of Ernesettle to consider if and how council housing of the 1940s and 50s affected the material and social circumstances of its residents. By focusing on residents’ narratives of daily life between 1950 and 1980, I document a high point in council estate history comprising: a neighbourhood culture of mutual support and lively street life; a domestic culture, closely bound to the nuclear family and the home as a site of consumption; an associational culture of clubs, sports, the church, the pub, and social club; and a working culture of full male employment, collective representation, and increasing employment opportunities for women. The function of the neighbourhood in a process of drawing working-class populations into the mid 20th century cultural mainstream, and its subsequent association with their post-1980s expulsion to the social margins, provides a recurrent research theme underpinning my discussion of Ernesettle life as I explore how changes over time corresponded with the status of residents and their sense of place in society at large.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: UK Social Policy ; Oral History