An original study seeking to challenge the negativity associated with council estates. The book is a synthesis of social and urban history in an area of England relatively neglected by historians, the South East. Unlike many earlier histories of council housing, the book covers all of the estate’s history, not only the interwar or postwar years. Covers housing and politics; war and the English suburb; social change and issues of community and association; the uses of leisure; environmental and housing campaigns. It will be of interest not only to historians but to anyone interested in housing, housing policy, and key issues in urban studies.