Look how smart these estates in Milton Keynes looked 50 years ago
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A photo taken in 1974 of two brand new city estates has brought back memories on social media.
The picture from Living Archive and published on Milton Keynes Past and Present Facebook page, shows a very neat-looking Netherfield, Tinkers Bridge and part of the new development at Simpson’s Hamner Road.
These were among the first estates to be built in the new city, along with Galley Hill, Fullers Slade and Stacey Bushes.
All the early housing schemes were distinctive, with their ‘straight line’ layouts and continuous facades giving a sleek modern look to the estates.
There was a shortage of building materials at the time and linear building, often using timber frames and panelling, was an efficient way to combat this.
These methods may have won architectural praise at the time but sadly, over the decades, many of the houses did not stand up to the test of time.
Netherfield, with its flat roofs and corrugated tin panels, has fared particularly badly. Now classed as rundown and in need of regeneration, it forms part of the most deprived area of Milton Keynes.
Tinkers Bridge too is in this area and among the nine estates where a ‘Cost of Living Emergency’ was unanimously declared by Woughton Community Council last year.
Back in 1974 though, hopes were high for the families arriving to start a new life on a new estate in Milton Keynes. Houses were incredibly easily to rent, jobs easy to find, and families were often told there would be enough housing for their children and grandchildren when they grew up.