July 1, 2022 4.52 pm

‘I wouldn’t trade my 1940s prefab house for anything’

They might not look luxurious, but residents love them

By Local Democracy Reporter

The people living in Lincoln’s pre-fabricated houses put up after the Second World War say they still love their homes.

There are around 100 bungalows built during the 1940s still standing in Lincoln.

One which has fallen into disrepair will be demolished, and Councillor Edmund Strengiel suggested it was “long overdue” for the others to be replaced with newer bungalows.

Councillor Strengiel, who was raised in a prefab house, told a recent planning meeting he would like to the homes replaced with newer models if residents agree and the money is available.

The City of Lincoln Council has no plans to do this currently.

The prefabs were initially built to last around 20 years to deal with a post-war housing shortage. However, residents on Outer Circle Drive say they’re still very happy with the old homes.

Terry Bell says pre-fab houses are spacious and comfortable

Terry Bell is proud of his spacious two-bedroom home with a front and side garden, which he owns himself.

“Everyone loves their bungalows, they wouldn’t want to trade them for newer ones even if they could. One gentleman likes them so much he’s been here almost since they were built,” he said.

“The houses are brilliant. They were originally meant for soldiers, not elderly people, but there’s been so much work done you wouldn’t know that.

“The council is constantly here installing new kitchens and bathrooms.

Tony has no plans to leave his pre-fab | Photo: LDRS

“The estate is completely different to 20 years ago. There used to be a family and their hangers-on that were wild.

“When I moved in, I found 14 needles which had been thrown in my garden. There was a point where I got a brick through my bathroom window.

“I installed cameras though, and they did the trick. The estate’s nothing like that now – it’s a lovely area to live.”

Barbara Forrest has been pleasantly surprised by her own prefabricated bungalow, and wouldn’t move if she got the chance.

“I was sceptical when I was offered one of the bungalows, but now I’ve been here three years, I absolutely love it,” she said.

Many of the pre-fabs enjoy spacious gardens at the front and side | Photo: LDRS

“It’s so much bigger and easier to clean than a flat. The neighbourhood’s lovely and peaceful.

“My only complaint is that I would like a bath as well as a shower, but otherwise it’s perfect for me.”

Around 157,000 homes were constructed around the country after the war, although many have been replaced with newer housing.

Dave Denton, who has lived on the road for 22 years, said: “There’s nothing wrong with these houses, they’re all good quality. My mother lived here before me and had a beautiful garden. It deteriorated when I had to look after her, but I’d like to get it looking beautiful again.

“Unfortunately, the road has got quite busy since the bypass was completed, even at 6am. It seems like people are using it as a rat run which makes it quite noisy.”

They may not look luxurious, but residents are very happy with their homes | Photo: LDRS

A local resident who lives close by added: “Most of the people who live here are elderly, and Covid took a few of them.

“It’s strange how the houses were only meant to be here a few years. Most have been bricked-up to make them more long-term. All of my friends in them seem happy though.”