llch recommends: estates at open house 2014

Great Arthur House, Golden Lane

There may be no Trellick Tower on the programme this year, but there’s still plenty of estates to be seen over the annual Open House weekend (20-21 September, 2014).

So, in no particular order, here are LLCH’s top picks. (Titles marked with a * are linked to posts on this blog)

Alexandra Road*


13(b) Rowley Way, Abbey Road NW8 0SF

Your annual chance to get inside one of Neave Brown’s lovely flats at Alexandra Road. There’s usually a queue, so get there early. And while you’re waiting walk around the rest of the estate.

Golden Lane Estate*

Golden Lane maisonette block

20 Goswell Road, EC1M 7AA

Chamberlin, Powell & Bon’s unique estate in the City of London is always a pleasure to visit. Make sure you check out Great Arthur House (which is on the verge of being refurbished) and the lovely leisure centre. Have a wander around, and check out the exhibition.

Cressingham Gardens

Cressingham Gardens, c/o Twentieth Century Society

Tulse Hill, SW2 2QN

This is number one on my ‘go see’ list, not least because Lambeth Council has plans to demolish this leafy estate. The residents are fighting a valiant campaign to save the buildings, designed by the Lambeth Borough Architects Department, and the Twentieth Century Society has also lent its support.

Prefab Museum (The Excalibur Estate)*

Excalibur Estate, Catford

17 Meliot Road, Catford, SE16 1RY

The Prefab Museum in Catford examines and celebrates the life of the Excalibur Estate in Catford, and is well worth a visit. There are tours of the actual estate starting at the museum on Sat & Sun at 230pm.

Walter Segal self-build houses*

Walters Way, Lewisham

8 & 10 Walters Way, Honor Oak Park, SE23 3LH

Ah the lovely Walter Segal houses in south London. I couldn’t recommend this estate more. The houses are open on Sunday from 1pm-6pm.

Carpenters Estate*

Carpenters Estate


Dennison Point, E15 2LY

The Carpenters Estate was narrowly saved from extinction last year when a deal to turn it into a new UCL outpost collapsed. This year one of the tower blocks, Dennison Point, will be open to the public. Hourly tours are running on Sat from 1pm-5pm to give views across the Olympic Park from the 22nd floor and there will be information about the history of the estate and area available.

Balfron Tower*

Balfron Tower


St Leonard’s Road, E14 0QT

It’s unlikely there’s anyone left in London who hasn’t seen the Balfron Tower at one event or another over the last few months. As the building awaits its transformation into private housing it has been home to numerous art projects and hosted a day of events during the London Architecture Festival. So, this might be a last chance to see it in its (mostly) original state. Tours run every half hour on Sat 1pm-5pm.

South Kilburn Regeneration

Bronte & Fielding House, image by Visualhouse

Cambridge Road/Kilburn Park Road, NW6

Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands and Alison Brook Architects are working on the regeneration plans for Bronte and Fielding House in South Kilburn. A good chance to see a long-term project that includes some new affordable housing being built in London. Architects will be on hand to answer questions.

Lansbury Estate*


Grundy Street, E14 6DR

These houses might look ordinary, but they are what visitors to the 1951 Festival of Britain architecture exhibition were shown on their long trek out to Poplar all those years ago. Make sure you head over to Chrisp Street Market and the Festival Inn for a pint (both also from the same exhibition). The Balfron Tower is nearby.


Lansbury Estate



One thought on “llch recommends: estates at open house 2014

  1. I’d also suggest the Perronet Estate flats tin Elephant and Castle. They don’t look very unusual from the outside but are split over five floors and are pretty quirky inside. Sadly not open on Sunday though.

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