Homes for Heroes 100: The Crisis and the Need

Ken Gibb, Roger Griffith, Paul Hackett and Vicky Spratt

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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?

Ken Gibb (Professor in Housing Economics, Glasgow University and Director of the UK Collaborative Centre for Housing Evidence) looks at the evidence for the crisis and where action is needed; Vicky Spratt (whose campaign Make Renting Fair highlighted the plight of ‘Generation Rent’ and succeeded in getting letting fees for tenants in England banned) covers some of the stories of the crisis; and Paul Hackett (Smith Institute/ Affordable Housing Commission) looks at whether councils can deliver genuinely affordable homes. It is introduced by Roger Grifftih, who talks about growing up in council housing in Lawrence Weston.

This event is part of Homes for Heroes 100, a year-long programme run by Bristol City Council, Festival of Ideas and Bristol Cultural Development Partnership in association with Local Learning, Knowle West Media Centre, Sea Mills 100 and the Architecture Centre. It marks the centenary of the Addison Act, which introduced the modern council estate, and looks at the past, present and future of council housing. Activity is taking place across Bristol, especially in Hillfields, Sea Mills and Knowle West, and includes community projects, history projects, walking tours, exhibitions, new books and art works. It is funded by Arts Council England, Bristol City Council, Historic England (through their Heritage Schools Initiative) and the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Image credit: Miles Tewson

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