The first of some reflections I am writing about a recent trip to Athens. This article goes through feelings of hope, disillusionment, and then (tentative) hope again for a country at the hard end of extreme austerity. I hope that I have managed to illuminate the state of things over there for folks in the […]

This article was published in South Leeds Life in response to Issue 10’s centrefold: Predicaments: unresolved and overlapping by South Leeds based artists Andrew Wilson and Toby Lloyd. The article references a struggle for retaining green space in the face of new housing development in the Garnets, South Leeds. HOUSING + CRISIS The housing crisis is […]

*Bob Dylan, Workingman’s Blues Bob Dylan stole that lyric. Or so my Dad says. The image of Bob Dylan lying between the hall and the kitchen is vivid in my mind. Woody Guthrie also talks about his feet sticking out onto the landing in an overcrowded oil boom town, his body resting horizontally between two crammed […]

Lammas is a low impact, off grid eco-village in Pembrokeshire, South Wales, consisting of nine smallholdings on 76 acres of land, all self-built by individual families using a range of methods from cob, to standard timber frame homes, to roundhouses – many of which are still in the process of being built. Before visiting Lammas […]

In Brighton I met architect Robin Hillier from Architype, an architecture firm that has developed and updated the Segal method to exceed current construction standards. Hillier was the architect for the Hedgehog Co-op self-build for rent scheme in Brighton which was initiated in 1996 by four people in housing need, some of whom were travellers […]

I visited Walter’s Way in Lewisham and met Ian White, a resident there, who was able to give me some good insight into the self-build programme set up by Lewisham council in the 1970s. These projects were first initiated by Walter Segal, Colin Ward and Nicholas Taylor, who secured several council-owned sites for shared (council […]

In need of some ‘self-build inspiration’ I set off looking at various models in England and Wales. What I found was a huge variety of examples – from the individualistic to the communitarian, from shacks and sheds in Essex to roundhouses in Pembrokeshire. Throughout my trip I was always looking for connections to the informal […]