On 16 October, as part of the Festival of the Future City, there will be a day of sessions exploring council housing past, present and future linked to Homes for Heroes 100.

Miles Tewson Festival of the Future City 2019
(image: Miles Tewson)

All events take place at Watershed and tickets are ‘Pay what you can’ except for the evening showcase, which is free for all. Booking is now open. There will be time for audience questions.

16 October 2019, 9:30am – 10:45am

Homes for Heroes 100: The Past, Present and Future of Council Housing

Greg Beales, Brett Christophers, Vanessa Kisuule, Anne Power and Paul Smith

The housing crisis is never out of the news, though action is always slow. In the year of the centenary of the council estate – which Bristol is marking extensively – what are the key issues facing housing and a new programme of council house building? Where are the new ideas? Is the land available? And can councils deliver what is needed? These three keynotes address these issues.

There will also be the premiere of the new film made by the Architecture Centre as part of Homes for Heroes 100 and a reading by Vanessa Kisuule (Bristol City Poet) of her poem for the centenary of the Addison Oak in Sea Mills.

Further details and booking link

16 October 2019, 11:15am – 12:30pm

Homes for Heroes 100: The Addison Vision Today

John Boughton, Madge Dresser and Simon Guentner

The Addison Act of 1919 introduced the modern council estate and allocated resources to building houses. Since then, millions of people have benefited from council housing. What was a great vision and an attempt to provide good and decent dwellings in a good society for middle- and working-class people, as well as create new communities, changed over the decades. Council housing began to be seen as a place of last resort for the poor, the quality of much housing began to decline, and right-to-buy saw the best houses sold and no new investment from the proceeds of this.

What lessons can be learned from this? And what lessons can be learned from other cities?

Further details and booking links

16 October 2019, 1:30pm – 2:45pm

Homes for Heroes 100: The Crisis and the Need

Ken Gibb, Paul Hackett and Vicky Spratt

We are in the midst of a long-term housing crisis. The mass building of new houses is needed and council housing is part of this. But where are we now? What is the nature of the crisis? What role can council housing play? Where is the vision, locally and nationally?

Further details and booking link

16 October 2019, 3:15pm – 4:15pm

Homes for Heroes 100: Council House Lives

Natasha Carthew, Sarah Crown, Lynsey Hanley, Kerry Hudson, Durre Shahwar and Joan Smith

What was it like to grow up in council housing? What has been the long-term impact on residents? What can we learn from this for the new programme of council housing today?

We commissioned 20 writers and commentators to talk about their experience of living in council housing for the publication Homes for Heroes 100: Council Estate Memories. They talk about the stigma often associated with being a council tenant, but also what it was like to move to decent accommodation, usually after living in poor-quality housing; what security meant to them and their families; and the role of community. Some of the authors will speak at this event.

Further details and booking link

16 October 4:45pm – 5.45pm

Homes for Heroes 100: Building New Communities in New Estates

Alice Brownfield, Kate Henderson, Victor da Cunha, John Boughton and Jenny Lacey

The prospects for new council housing and new estates are good. But how do we avoid the problems of the past and create new affordable housing to buy or rent in liveable neighbourhoods? Can we make sure people have the opportunity to live good lives side-by-side when even some playgrounds are segregated in new developments? What’s the role of architects and developers, as well as councils?

Further details and booking link

16 October 2019, 8:00pm – 9:30pm (this event is free, but booking is required)

Homes for Heroes 100: Showcase

Throughout 2019, projects in Homes for Heroes 100 have been working in many communities across the city to celebrate council housing, investigate the problems and the crisis and gather ideas for future housing and developing communities as well as places. Homes for Heroes 100 has also been working with writers to look at the experiences of growing up in council housing in the past and what this means today. Examples, lessons learned and where we go next are all explored in this showcase of projects.

Further details and booking link

Free Books/

The festival information stall on the first floor of Watershed will have free copies of the comic Homes for Heroes 100: One Hundred Years of Council Housing in Bristol, Homes for Heroes 100: Book of Walks and Homes for Heroes 100: Council Estate Memories while stocks last.

Homes for Heroes 100 comic book coverBCDP Homes for Heroes 100 Book of Walks CoverBFOI Homes for Heroes 100 Book of Essays Cover

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