Iconic 60’s housing in Surrey…

December 1st 2014
By: Melanie Hollidge
Iconic 60’s housing in Surrey…

We were delighted to see that this week’s BBC 2 programme, The Great Interior Design Challenge, was based in Surrey, on one of the most iconic 1960’s housing estates in the UK, originally designed by the forward thinking architect Laurie Abbott, who was only 24 years of age at the time.
Three houses were due for a make over and the design quarter finalists, Fiona, Kate and Martin all had to take into consideration the angular designs of the living rooms, vaulted ceilings and large oval windows when creating their designs.
At the time when they were conceived, rural Surrey was not much bigger than a country village, so these modernist buildings received mixed reviews from locals - from people calling them ugly and an affront to being praised for their innovative, forward thinking designs perfect for the modern family.
Abbott created these social houses with flat roofs, creating an industrial style, hiding all of the services such as guttering inside the houses’ main partitions. Large vaulted ceilings and linear lines were a main part of his style, creating a real space age feel.
Part of his design innovation was to work around the natural environment, creating 32 properties, which bent around the already established trees, as well as tilting the angles of the properties so that they didn’t over look one another, put in windows up high in the bedrooms to enhance privacy.
Abbott then went on to help design the Pompidou Centre in Paris with Richard Rogers another reputable architect, this time the designs moved away concealment and they put all of the services on the outside, revolutionary at the time.

Source: BBC 2