Homes through the decades: the making of modern housing

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This guide from the NHBC Foundation introduces the history of the modern British home.

With photographs, graphics and timelines, we show the evolution of planning, design, and construction. Read about the challenges that have shaped the modern home – from cholera outbreaks in Victorian London, right through to carbon emissions targets today.

Over the past two centuries, Britain has experienced seismic changes in society, politics, technology and culture. From Victoriana to the digital age, housing has played a pivotal role and has featured, for different reasons at different times, at the very top of the political agenda.

We are now embarking on a further historically-important step for housing as we seek to establish a generation of new homes suitable for the 21st century. At this time our thinking on modern British housing should be informed by a clear understanding of what has gone before and an enlightened view of how we should address the challenges of today and tomorrow.

In Homes through the decades: the making of modern housing, the NHBC Foundation has summarised the drivers, endeavour and experience that over the last hundred and fifty years has shaped modern British housing. It features the pivotal events projects and inspirational people – reformers, planners, architects, designers, technologists and construction teams – who have grappled with the pressures and constraints of their time to deliver our unique housing heritage.

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