Great Linford Housing, Milton Keynes
February 8, 2011
For some strange reasons Linford Grid managed to produce more successful housing schemes than many other grids developed at the same time. This may be partly due to small parcels awarded to better known architects and possibly due to abundance of existing trees and hedges and some notable existing village buildings. This scheme by Brian Frost for 113 housing units in terraced and courtyard houses was like most schemes designed for rental housing and once again has mainly ended up in private ownership with all associated problems damaging the architectural unity of the original scheme.
The strength of terraced houses around the edges of the site is as powerful as ever despite the bruises and unfortunate alteration occasionally ruining the roof line and fenestration rhythms. The local planning office must take a more rigid line to stop this damaging process in most early housing schemes specially designed as unified communities which is gradually being destroyed.
The fair-faced concrete walls are still looking good and some inventive roof extensions in courtyard housing are logical and witty. The damaged soft clay vertical hanging tiles are easy enough to replace but the ownership problems are stopping even this to be carried out in most places.
The quality and variation of external spaces and circulation with good landscaping still retains the coherence and yet again proves that good intelligent, creative designs are street ahead of acres of soul-less Barratt/Wimpey type mass production of mediocrity currently sweeping the city and even the country.
The plans and B&W photos are attributable to AJ 23 January 1978. B&W photos by John Donat.
The colour photos were taken recently. This series hopes to cover most of the early significant housing in the new city in its early days of development.
Filed in 70s Housing, Buckinghamshire, Cortyard Housing, Milton Keynes, Modern Architecture, New Town, Private Housing, Social Housing, Town Planning
Tags: Brian Frost, Housing in Britain, Landscape, Linford, Milton Keynes, MKDC, Private Housing, Social Housing, Traditional Construction