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The London Journal

A Review of Metropolitan Society Past and Present

ISSN: 0305-8034 (Print) 1749-6322 (Online) Journal homepage: http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/yldn20

Continuity and Change in Philanthropic Housing


Organisations: the Octavia Hill Housing Trust and
the Guinness Trust
Peter Malpass
To cite this article: Peter Malpass (1999) Continuity and Change in Philanthropic Housing
Organisations: the Octavia Hill Housing Trust and the Guinness Trust, The London Journal,
24:1, 38-57, DOI: 10.1179/ldn.1999.24.1.38
To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1179/ldn.1999.24.1.38

Published online: 18 Jul 2013.

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Date: 29 July 2016, At: 11:24

Continuity and Change in Philanthropic


Housing Organisations: the Octavia Hill
Housing Trust and the Guinness Trust
PETER MALPASS

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Introduction
The housing market and the housing system in London are different from other parts
of the country. Very high land prices, particularly in central areas, mean that rates of
home ownership are lower than elsewhere, and that more people rely on various forms
of renting. Renting from local authorities and commercial private landlords remains
more significant in London than in the country as a whole, and housing associations
provide around 7 per cent of all dwellings in the capital, compared with 4 per cent for
England.1 Housing associations are not-for-profit organisations the main purpose of
which is to provide rented housing for people on low incomes. Since 1974 they have
been regulated by the Housing Corporation (a government appointed quango) and
funded by a combination of grants from the Corporation and local authorities, and,
since the late 1980s, loans from private financial institutions. The majority of their tenants rely on Housing Benefit to help with all or part of their rent, and therefore, in
terms of both capital and revenue finance, housing associations are heavily dependent
on state support. Although they are nominally independent organisations, run by
voluntary boards of directors who are elected by shareholding members, in reality
housing associations are thoroughly incorporated into the fragmented structure of the
contemporary welfare state. In recent years, as local authority housing stocks have
declined and building programmes have ground to a halt, housing associations have
become the main providers of new social rented homes, and their activities are increasingly significant. At a local level they can have a big influence on the supply of affordable rented homes and on the way that neighbourhoods and estates are perceived.2
In 1996 nearly a third of all members of the National Housing Federation were
based in London: 442 housing associations owned over 343,000 dwellings, and more
than a quarter of all housing association dwellings are in the capital. 3 In numerical
terms associations collectively own substantially more flats and houses than were
once owned by the Greater London Council (GLC) before the programme of
transfer to the Boroughs in the 1970s. There is considerable variation amongst the
associations active in London today, much of which can be attributed to their very
different historical origins. Housing associations, and their forerunners, have a long
track record of working in London; it was here that from the 1840s onwards a variety
of philanthropic and semi-philanthropic organisations set out to show that decent
housing could be provided at rents that were affordable to the urban working class.
There is an extensive literature on the activities of these organisations in the
nineteenth century whereas very little has been written about what happened to
them subsequently.4 Thus, although it is customarily claimed that modern housing
associations have deep historical roots, there are still many unanswered questions
about the extent and nature of the links between today's associations and their
London lournal

24, (1), 1999

CONTINUITY AND CHANGE IN PHILANTHROPIC

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39

putative Victorian forebears. The objective of this article, therefore, is to sketch in


some of those links by means of an account focusing on the growth and development of organisations representing two distinct traditions in philanthropic housing.

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Continuity and change: an analytical framework


The history of charitable housing provision can be traced back to 1235, or even
earlier, but organisations with a credible claim to be direct or close antecedents of
today's mainstream housing associations emerged only in the Victorian period.5
London was the main venue for philanthropic and semi-philanthropic housing
activity; elsewhere, apart from some well known examples of model villages
developed by enlightened employers, the level of activity was 'scarcely noticeable'.6
The explanation for this concentration of effort probably lies in the peculiar social
and economic circumstances of the capital, and in particular in the relationship
between the markets for land and labour, but the existing literature does not
address the question in any detail. In the sixty years before the First World War the
contribution of the philanthropic and semi-philanthropic housing organisations in
London has been variously put at between 40,000 and 59,000, comfortablyexceeding the 11,300 provided by the local authorities.7
The term 'Five per cent philanthropy' has been applied to a range of approaches
that sought to show that decent standards could be achieved at affordable rents if
investors were prepared to accept a return somewhat below the normal 7 to 10 per
cent.s First, there were the model dwellings companies, which were dependent for
much of their capital on their ability to raise money from shareholders, and then
there were the endowed charitable trusts, of which the best known Victorian examples
are the Peabody Donation Fund (founded in 1862, now the Peabody Trust) and the
Guinness Trust (1889). There were also contributions by wealthy individuals, such
as Baroness Burdett-Coutts who in 1862 built a scheme containing 183 tenements at
Columbia Square, Bethnal Green.9 Both the companies and the trusts were model
dwellings providers in the sense that they aimed to show what could be achieved,
and thereby to attract others into the same kind of work. A quite different approach
was developed by Octavia Hill, whose lasting influence is based on her emphasis on
housing management rather than new building.10 Both the various model dwellings
providers and Octavia Hill can be seen as operating from a socially top-down point
of view, but co-partnership housing societies, which started in Ealing in 1901 and
flowered briefly before the First World War, represented an approach based on
workers' self-help. 11
Then, as now, voluntary housing organisations varied in size from tiny projects
with just a few dwellings right up to the likes of the Artisans', Labourers' and
General Dwellings Company with 7,000 dwellings by 1910.12 There were more than
thirty model dwellings companies and trusts operating in London in the second
half of the century, and the lack of academic attention given to these organisations
in the present century compared with the last is no doubt partly due to the tendency
of historians to focus on specific periods, but it also reflects a particular reading of history in which the emergence of council housing follows on from the demonstrable
failings of the voluntary sector. 13 Most accounts interpret the relatively poor performance of the voluntary sector as strengthening the case for state intervention, and after
the creation of the London County Council in 1889 attention shifts to council housing.

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This Whiggish approach, which has led to both a mis-specification of the causes
of change in the housing system and a gap in the literature about the links between
nineteenth-century voluntary housing providers and modern housing associations,
has rightly attracted criticism. 14There is also the problem of teleology, or constructing accounts of the past on the basis of hindsight, focusing only on those events and
trends that subsequently proved to be significant, but which at the time were not
necessarily perceived in this way.15Marginalised by housing policy, especially after
the two world wars, voluntary housing organisations have been largely ignored by
housing historians, who are generally content merely to note their very small
contributions to new building totals; writers of extended historical accounts of British housing policy, such as Holmans and Harloe, make hardly any reference to housing associations, but there are exceptions from this rule in the work of Emsley, who
includes a case study of housing associations in Hammersmith, Skilleter, who
concentrates on public utility societies up to the mid-1930s and Garside, whose
focus is the events surrounding the report of the Moyne Committee in 1933.16
It is clear that the majority of model dwellings providers failed to survive in a
recognisable form into the present period and failed to transform themselves into
modern housing associations. Although the full story of what happened to them
remains to be written, there is evidence that some of them survived for a lot longer
than the literature implies; for instance, the oldest of all, the Society for Improving
the Condition of the Labouring Classes, renamed the 1830 Housing Society, was still
active in 1963 and was merged with the Peabody Trust in 1965, and the Artisans',
Labourers' and General Dwellings Company celebrated its centenary in 1967, when
it disposed of its housing stock to the local authorities.17 However, very few of
today's active housing associations can demonstrate direct organisational continuity
with these earlier bodies - a feature that distinguishes housing associations from,
say, building societies, most of which have deep rooted institutional continuity.
A complete analysis of continuity and change would require consideration of
those organisations founded in the nineteenth century but which have failed to
survive into the present period, those that have survived and those that have been
founded more recently. However, such an undertaking is beyond the scope of the
present article. Instead the approach here focuses on a small number of voluntary
housing organisations which began in Victorian London and which have survived
and made the transition into successful modern housing associations. The objective
is to begin to fill in some of the missing history of voluntary housing organisations
in London and to demonstrate the nature of the continuity between present-day
housing associations and their Victorian forerunners, by taking a longitudinal look
at organisations that have made significant but different contributions to the housing of some of the poorest families in the capital over the last century.
The article arises from studies commissioned by the Octavia Hill Housing Trust
(OHHT) and the Guinness Trust, and therefore the main sources are archive material which has not been available previously, although Dennis has done similar work
at the Peabody Trust.1S The detailed historical evidence contained in housing
association archives provides valuable information on how the organisations were
established, how they grew, how they were financed and managed, and to some
extent about who their tenants were. This information can help ~o explain differences in the scale of operations and in the geographical spread of contemporary

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associations; it can also shed light on the different types of housing stock currently
owned. However, it is necessary to try to situate this sort of 'history from the inside'
in a wider social, political and economic context. Thus there are questions to be
asked about the nature of the social project underlying philanthropic housing
provision and the social position of the people running the organisations. In the
twentieth century it is important to consider the organisations in the context of the
emerging, and changing, welfare state. This requires consideration of their role in
terms of national housing policy, and their relationships with the local housing
authorities in their areas of operation.
The approach adopted here is chronological, looking at the Octavia Hill organisations and the Guinness Trust in parallel, with the intention of highlighting both
similarities and differences. The period covered runs from the latter part of the
nineteenth century up to 1974. The reason for selecting this cut-off point is that in
the history of housing associations the Housing Act, 1974, occupies a pivotal position: the Act marked the point at which mainstream associations were brought
clearly within the ambit of state housing policy. Organisations that survived until
that date with sufficient vigour, flexibility and willingness to go forward were from
then on assured of the financial support (in the form of Housing Association
Grant) to enable them to do so. But this opportunity came at a price: in order to
qualify for financial assistance associations had to comply with the registration
requirements of the Housing Corporation, and taken together these two factors had
the effect of reducing the diversity within the movement and of incorporating
associations as agents of the state.

Philanthropic housing organisations in London before 1914


The organisations that provide the focus of this paper all date from 1886 or later, and
therefore post-date the criticisms levelled at model dwellings during the deliberations
of the Royal Commission on the Housing of the Working Classes in 1884-85. Model
dwellings organisations first emerged in the 1840s, and there was a later wave of activity in the 1860s (when Octavia Hill began her work), but by the mid-1880s the Royal
Commission heard much unflattering evidence concerning their achievements, and
reached pessimistic conclusions about their potential.19 However, it is important to
recognise that despite the high profile of the Royal Commission at the time, and in
contradistinction to the impression given by some historians, existing providers carried on building and new organisations continued to be established.
Victorian philanthropic and semi-philanthropic housing ventures were not housing associations in the sense that the term is used today, and application of the label
to organisations before the mid-1930s is both anachronistic and misleading.20 The
key differences were the greater independence of these organisations in the days
before the development of elaborate methods of state regulation and the fact that
(charities apart) they were profit distributing companies. The model dwellings
companies were simply private limited companies which voluntarily restricted their
dividends to a maximum of 5 per cent, and Octavia Hill undertook to provide investors with a similar rate of return. Charities such as the Guinness Trust had no
shareholders or investors to satisfy, but they generally aimed to show a positive rate
of return on capital invested by the trustees. The Guinness Trust initially aimed at

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3.5 per cent return, but settled in practice for 3 per cent. The Peabody Donation
Fund and later the Sutton Dwellings Trust (now the William Sutton Trust) also
worked on rates of return of 2 per cent and 1.5-2 per cent respectively.21
In organisational terms, too, the nineteenth-century bodies differed from modern
housing associations. For instance, by comparison with their late twentieth century
counterparts they operated with very small central office teams. The Guinness Trust
was unusual in the sense that it was established to invest the 250,000 (equivalent to
more than 14 million today) donated by Sir Edward Guinness (soon to be Baron
Iveagh) in 1889, but it was not unusual in having just three people at its central
office until as late as the 1930s, during a period when its housing stock grew to
exceed 3,300 dwellings. But at least they had an office with salaried staff, whereas
Octavia Hill's operation was characterised by a deep reluctance to set up any kind
offormal organisational structure. In her evidence to the Royal Commission on the
Housing of the Working Classes in 1884 Hill stated that she had 'never formed a
society', and went on to emphasise the point by saying that, 'We have next to no
printing, and next to no stationery; we have no office, and we have no machinery
that costs anything'.22 Hill's approach was based on decentralisation of ownership
and management. In effect, from her house in Marylebone she ran a professional
housing management service for a multiplicity of owners, although she remained
very much in control and it is recorded that right up to the last months of her life
her managers would travel from various parts of London every Thursday to have
their accounts checked.23
However, in 1886 she did agree to the creation of the Horace Street Trust simply
as a legal device for holding a small amount of property that one of her supporters
had wanted to convey to Hill personally. She was also prepared to work with people
who set up formal organisations to provide housing. For example, Hill was involved
with the management of tenements built by the East End Dwellings Company, set
up in 1884 by her close friends Samuel and Henrietta Barnett, and in 1900 she was
consulted by a small group of wealthy Kensington residents who set up the Improved
Tenements Association (ITA). The ITA was a limited company established to buy
properties in Notting Hill and to place them under Octavia Hill's management. In
practice she seems to have kept her distance, never buying any shares in the
company, nor attending minuted meetings. The ITA properties were managed on a
commission basis by one of her co-workers, a Miss Dicken, who carried on working
for the Association on this basis un til 1943.
Turning to questions of finance and development, unlike modern housing associations whose development programmes are heavily underpinned by public subsidy,
nineteenth-century housing organisations received no explicit subsidies, although
some (including Peabody and the Improved Industrial Dwellings Company) were
able to buy cleared sites from the Metropolitan Board of Works at well below open
market value. There was also the possibility of cheap loans from the Public Works
Loans Board for organisations which limited the dividends paid to shareholders,
but in general expansion depended on their ability to attract capital from shareholders, purchasers of loan stock and charitable benefactors. The Guinness trustees, of
course, were in the enviable position of being able to move ahead with a large building programme without having to issue a prospectus to potential investors, in
marked contrast to the ITA which was initially able to raise only 400 of its nominal
share capital of 2,000.

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Modern housing associations have specialist development departments, but the


Guinness trustees relied on independent architects to bring them sites, to design
the estates and to manage the development process. There is little hard evidence on
how the trustees decided which sites were suitable for development, but they
needed to be in areas where there was a demand for working-class housing, and they
needed to be both large enough to permit the employment of estate based staff and
cheap enough to produce affordable rents. The Trust paid less than the full market
price for its sites, two of which were purchased from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.24 The first estate contained 190 'associated tenements', which were simply
suites of 1 to 3 rooms, with no water, sanitation nor even gas lighting; groups of
tenements shared WCs and sinks located on the landings, and there were separate
bath houses for the estate as a whole. Subsequent developments were on a larger
scale, so that the average size of the eight estates built by 1901 was 325 dwellings
(similar to the scale of Peabody estates of the same period). From the point of view
of the philanthropic housing agencies the definition of suitable sites meant ones
that were close to the City or the West End.25 These providers generally avoided the
poorest parts of London, but during its 1890s building programme the Guinness
Trust, which was committed to targeting the lowest paid workers, built one estate in
Bethnal Green and two in Bermondsey, which was an overcrowded district with
some of the worst concentrations of poverty in London.26
The formation of the Trust was announced in November 1889 and by March 1890
the trustees had engaged architects to work on three schemes; at Brandon Street,
Walworth, Draycott Avenue, Chelsea and Columbia Road, Bethnal Green, and they
were negotiating to buy another site at Lever Street, Finsbury. The first estate to be
opened was at Brandon Street and was designed by N.S.Joseph who had previous
experience of designing block dwellings for the Four per cent Industrial Dwellings
Company.27Joseph went on to design five of the first eight Guinness estates, and his
practice (taken over by his son) remained involved with the Trust until the 1930s.
The Chelsea estate differed from the others in that the land was presented to
the Trust as a gift by Lord Cadogan, who owned, and was then redeveloping, a large
part of Chelsea.28 Cadogan was not alone in this sort of enlightened munificence and
there were other examples of similar donations by aristocratic London landowners
including the Duke of Westminster and the Marquis of Northampton.29 Without
doubting the philanthropic motives of these wealthy men, giving land for model dwellings represented astute estate management, ensuring a supply ofworking-elass labour
in the vicinity while forestalling the development of slum areas. In the case of the
Chelsea site Lord Cadogan was also able to remove a private lunatic asylum from the
neighbourhood. Elsewhere the Guinness Trust received outside support at Lever
Street where the Goldsmiths' Company gave a donation of 25,000, but otherwise the
early work was entirely funded from the Trust's own resources.
There was an early and unsuccessful attempt to acquire a site from the London
Coun ty Council at Cable Street, Shadwell. Immediately following the first meeting
of the Trustees, Charles Ritchie had written on their behalf to Lord Rosebery (chairman of the newly formed LCC's Housing of the Working Classes Committee), seeking the Council's assistance in obtaining suitable sites for housing the very poor.
Although the reply was prompt and positive in tone, negotiations were drawn out
and ultimately fruitless, largely because neither side was willing to give ground. On

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the one hand, the deal represen ted an early test of the power of the Council to insist
on higher standards for new housing, while on the other hand, the trustees of the
newly established Trust were unwilling to fetter their freedom to disburse their
resources as they saw fit. The Trust objected in principle to being required to meet
standards specified by the Council, but there was also the pragmatic objection that
to meet those higher standards would have an effect on rents and hence on the
Trust's ability to house people on the lowest incomes. In sharp contrast to the previous experience of the Peabody Donation Fund in dealing with the Metropolitan
Board of Works, the Guinness Trust acquired no sites from the LCC or the Borough
Councils until 1929. Records held by the Trust shed very little light on the Cable
Street saga, but there is much more detail in LCC records.30
The construction of the first six Guinness estates, comprising nearly 1,900 tenements, exhausted the initial fund and a bank loan of 140,000 was secured in 1897
in order to carryon development. Two more estates were built by 1901, at Snow's
Fields, Bermondsey, and Fulham Palace Road, Hammersmith. The Trust had built
more than 2,500 tenements in a decade and in 1898 claimed to have housed more
people than the LCC up to that point. However, after Fulham Palace Road the Trust
built nothing more during the next twenty years. This was partly because of a
deliberate policy of repaying existing loans before incurring new debt, and partly
because of the impact of the First World War. The trustees' attitude to borrowing
and debt repayment may be likened to the 'extreme financial conservatism' of the
Peabody trustees, and it is certainly in marked contrast to the behaviour of many of
the larger housing associations today.31
The scale and form of the estates built by the Trust was typical of other companies
and trusts, and very differen t from the way that Octavia Hill expanded her property
portfolio. As already mentioned, Hill relied on others to offer property to her to be
managed, and she also concentrated on managing and improving existing rundown
houses. Her housing work began in 1865 when John Ruskin bought the leases on
three rundown houses in Paradise Place, Marylebone, very close to Hill's home in
Nottingham Place. In 1866 Ruskin bought another six houses in Freshwater Place,
Marylebone, ' ... inhabited by a desperate and forlorn set of people, wild, dirty,
violent and ignorant as ever I have seen,.32
Further properties in the same area were bought by friends and benefactors for
her to manage, so that by 1874 Hill claimed to have 15 blocks under her management, and she had become a nationally known figure.33 By 1884 Hill was managing
property in other parts of London, including St Pancras, St Giles, St George in the
East, Whitechapel, Drury Lane and Chelsea. In that year she was asked to take on
48 houses owned by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in Deptford, and from this
developed an enduring and increasingly important relationship, which eventually
meant that most of Hill's work was south of the Thames. Never personally wealthy,
Hill always relied on others to provide the capital for the expansion of her work; she
told the Royal Commission in 1884 that she was never short of such investors. She
did not entirely reject new building, and the OHHT today manages a small number
of cottages and flats that were built by Hill and whose design reflects her influence,
but since most of her work concentrated on existing houses she did not make the
same kind of visual impact on late Victorian London that was achieved by the model
dwelling providers. The hallmark of Hill's approach was small scale; rather like

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many modern housing associations involved in rehabilitation she too acquired


properties in small packets, sometimes one or two at a time. However, late in life, in
the first decade of the twentieth century, she was involved in a large estate redevelopment project in Walworth on behalf of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.34
However, in terms of organisational continuity and links to the modern OHHT, it
was Hill's move into Notting Hill in 1899 that proved to be most significant. She was
invited by a local vicar to take over five houses in St Katherine's Road (now Wilsham
Street) in what was then known as the Notting Dale Special Area, or the Avernus.35
This was a small area of just five streets which, although very close to the large,
expensive, middle-class houses of Holland Park to the south, was itself made up of
small, tightly packed working-class terraced cottages, generally let by the room. to
some of the poorest families in London.36 It suffered from having been built in
close proximity to an area known as the Potteries, just to the north, where until
quite recently up to 3,000 pigs had been kept on land that was poorly drained. During the 1890s the Kensington Vestry had been reluctant to take decisive action to
improve conditions in the area, but it was ideal territory for Octavia Hill's style of
redemptive social work. It was in Notting Hill (but not initially in the Special Area)
that the Improved Tenements Association concentrated its efforts, acquiring a total
of 29 houses between 1900 and 1909. Further properties were purchased by the
Horace Street Trust and by friends of Octavia Hill (Dr and Mrs Schuster), so that by
1911 she was managing a majority of the ho~ses in St Katherine's Road, together
with others nearby. The Octavia Hill system had thus established a presence in Notting Hill which has survived through to the present day - the current offices of the
OHHT are just a few yards from the location of the first houses purchased by the
ITA in Walmer Road.
Octavia Hill is well known for her social work approach to housing management
amongst the poor, but there was also an important social aspect to the work of
organisations such as the Guinness Trust. The various housing reform schemes of
the Victorian era can be understood in terms of class relations; they represented a
top-down movement to secure decent housing for the respectable working class,
and to 'civilise' and pacify the urban poor. Rich and titled people lent their names
and their money, while some contributed land, to support projects of their choice.
Octavia Hill was aided by a number of wealthy people, including John Ruskin and
others who were more obviously part of the establishment, such as Lady Selbourne
and Lady Ducie. She was also patronised by royalty. In the case of the Guinness
Trust, Edward Guinness initially appointed three trustees, Lord Rowton (prominent
Conservative and adviser to the Queen), Charles Ritchie M.P. (then President of the
Local Government Board, later Home Secretary, Chancellor of the Exchequer and
finally Lord Ritchie), and David Plunket M.P. (an old political ally, later Lord Rathmore).
Harloe has emphasised that nineteenth-century reformers who campaigned on
housing and public health were concerned with a much broader social agenda.37
Action to improve housing and sanitary conditions was necessary to reduce the
incidence of infectious diseases, but in addition they were concerned with the
threat to social stability posed by the demoralised poor who crowded together in the
worst neighbourhoods, the haunts of the 'destructive' and criminal classes.38 The
model dwellings companies and trusts and the housing management system

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pioneered by Octavia Hill differed in many ways, but they shared a common
concern to pursue social objectives going beyond the provision of decent, well managed housing. In their different ways they sought to discipline their tenants and to
instil quiet, sober and respectable habits. For instance, the Guinness Trust estates all
had club rooms, supplied with newspapers and magazines, presumably to try to
keep young people off the streets and the adults out of the pubs - highlighting a
tension between the Trust and the family brewery! At the heart of the project lay the
insistence on prompt payment of rent, for it was the key not only to the economic
success of model housing but also to the development amongst tenants of thrift and
a commitment to regular work. The model dwellings companies and trusts generally built large estates consisting of five or six storey tenement blocks, which were
necessary in order to develop expensive central area sites at rents that were affordable by people on low incomes. However, there was also an element of physical
determinism in the design of the estates to the extent that in some cases (including
some Peabody and Guinness Trust estates) they could be closed offfrom the outside
world by gates controlled by resident estate superintendents. These superintendents
were recruited from amongst ex-military men, in explicit recognition of the objective of instilling discipline into tenants. White has likened the role of the
superintendents to that of an imperialist army of occupation, and Gauldie notes
that many of the poor were deterred by the tenancy rules and standards of behaviour
expected in block dwellings.39 Olsen has also argued that model dwellings
' ... contributed to the systematic sorting out and re-arrangement of the
various grades of Victorian society. Not only did they put carefully selected
groups of working-class families and individuals under one roof where they
could be supervised and improved more effectively, but they were a way of
separating the respectable, deserving poor from their unregenerate brothers and sisters. ,40
In a similar vein Wohl has referred to the model dwellings as ' ... a controlled
environment of enforced respectability', and Stedman jones has argued that in the
1880s in particular there was concern that growing overcrowding in central London
was forcing the respectable poor into too close association with the criminal class.41
In the case of the Guinness Trust, the recruitment of ex-military men to work as
resident estate superintendents continued until the 1970s, and it is interesting that
in the literature on housing management in the twentieth century this male
dominated strand has been almost completely ignored, while the Octavia Hill
system has been given extensive and favourable attention.42
The approach developed by Octavia Hill lacked the physical determinism of the
block dwellings, but her social purpose was even more explicit. Whereas the
companies and trusts aimed to deal with large numbers of people on purpose built
estates, Octavia Hill's small scale approach was based on belief in the benefit of
personal contact between the social classes. She also relied exclusively on women
housing managers, in marked contrast to the companies and trusts. Hill herself
belonged to the impoverished middle class, but she appears never to have entertained
any doubts about the superiority of her world view and value system. She was
influenced by the Christian Socialists and by Rev. Thomas Chalmers, who had
earlier organised visiting societies, promoting middle-class outreach to the poor.
Central to an understanding of the Octavia Hill system has to be the way she sought

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to use her powerful position as landlord to influence her tenants' behaviour. To Hill
housing management was a form of social work, and its proper practice required
the devoted commitment of trained volunteer women workers. Her approach was to
take on rented property with sitting tenants and only to remove them if they showed
themselves to be unwilling to meet her expectations in terms of regular rent payment and respectable behaviour. She described the work in these terms:
Each block is placed by me under a separate volunteer worker, who has the
duty of collecting [rents], superintending cleaning, keeping accounts, advising
as to repairs and improvements, and choice of tenants, and who renders all
personal help that can be given to the tenants without destroying their independence such as helping them to find work, collecting their savings, supplying
them with flowers, teaching them to grow plants, arranging happy amusements for them, and in every way helping them to help themselves. Of course
the weekly visit to collect rent gives a capital opening for all this, and the
control of the house itself, judiciously used, gives power for good much greater
than that possessed by the ordinary district visitor.43
Octavia Hill was more successful than the likes of the Peabody Trust and the model
dwellings companies in reaching the poor, because by concentrating on buying
cheap, rundown houses her costs, and therefore her rents, were lower than organisations that adopted a new build strategy. The Guinness Trust had an explicit commitment to serving the poor, and in 1891 the trustees resolved that in letting the
first estates 'preference should be given to working men earning about 20/- a week',
which was just below the poverty line suggested by Charles Booth in 1887. On the
first estate to be completed rents were set between 1s.6d. per week for one room on
the fourth floor and 5s. per week for three rooms on the ground floor44 There is
little detailed evidence of actual incomes of the first Guinness tenants, but at Fulham Palace Road, first let in 1901-03, average income was about 18s.11d. per
week.45 There is also evidence about length of tenancies on this estate in the period
up to the First World war, and it is clear that there was a high turnover. More than
half (57 per cent) of first tenancies lasted less than two years, and by August 1914
only 9 of the 364 tenements still housed the original tenants.46 Dennis has referred
to the difficulties faced by the model dwellings providers and the LCC in letting
some of their properties in Edwardian London, and there is some evidence that
both the Guinness Trust and the ITA shared this experience.47 The draft Guinness
Trust annual report for 1910 said that 'The buildings have not let as well as in previous years'. In 1911 the chairman of the ITA sought Octavia Hill's advice on the letting problem in Notting Hill, and in her reply she said that 'The demand for rooms
in London is nowhere near what it once was ... ,.48 This is a salutary reminder that
while it is customary to think of housing in terms of shortage, the building boom of
the late 1890s and early 1900s had eased the situation to the extent that some writers refer to the subsequent period as a crisis of over production.49
In the period before 1914 the Guinness Trust was closely identified with a form of
provision, the associated tenement, which was already obsolete, and with an approach
to estate design that was widely condemned at the time. Taken together with the
authoritarian approach to housing management it becomes clear that the Trust was
not a progressive organisation. The ideas that were to dominate thinking about
working-class housing provision in the post-First World War period were being

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developed by people like Raymond Unwin and Barry Parker at the garden city of
Letchworth, in conscious rejection of what the model dwellings organisations were
seen to stand for.50 In the aftermath of the war it was 'homes for heroes', and not
specifically for the poor, that became the focus of policy action, and in this context
it was the two storey cottage form developed at low densities that became the
predominant type of housing built by local authorities after 1919, even in London.5l
In her later years Octavia Hill, too, represented a social perspective that was being
increasingly vigorously challenged.52 Her death in 1912 led to the break up of the
operation that she had built up over nearly half a century; with no formal
organisational bureaucracy to carryon the work some degree of fragmentation was
probably inevitable. It is not entirely clear how many dwellings were directly under
Hill's management at that time, although Brion gives a figure of 1,800-1,900.53
Hill's death was a crisis point, but according to an account quoted by Brion, she had
made plans for her co-workers to carryon, sometimes independently and sometimes
under supervision (much of the south London property seems to have been taken
under the wing of Messrs Clutton).54 Only a small proportion of the property managed by Octavia Hill herself has filtered down to the modern Trust which bears her
name. The Trust has inherited a few dwellings south of the river, but none of the
large portfolio of Ecclesiastical Commissioners' property.
Between the wars
The First World War had a huge impact on society as a whole and on housing in
particular. Concern about social unrest in certain working-class areas led to the
introduction of rent control in December 1915, and this in turn led in 1919 to the
introduction of Exchequer subsidies for new houses built by local authorities,
public utility societies (a generic term then in use to describe the forerunners of
housing associations), and housing trusts.55 Local authorities rapidly overtook
voluntary organisations in terms of the numbers of dwellings provided. While local
authorities in England and Wales provided over one million houses between the
wars the voluntary sector managed only a very small number; accurate aggregate
figures are not available, but it is safe to assume that in the whole of the period from
1919 to 1939 they built only about 50,000 - equivalent to no more than the average
number built by local authorities each year. Even if it is assumed that a high proportion of new voluntary sector dwellings between the wars were in London, their
output was still very low in comparison with the 153,000 built by the LCC and the
Boroughs.56 In the economic turmoil following the war, voluntary organisations
experienced acute difficulties, and throughout the whole of the 1920s they built
very little. However, from the end of the decade there was increasing public debate
about the problems posed by slum housing and the much larger numbers of ageing
houses needing repair and modernisation. This was an area of work in which the
societies and trusts were seen by their supporters to have a valuable role to play.
In March 1933 the Minister of Health appointed a Departmental Committee
under the chairmanship of Lord Moyne (a recently ennobled former Conservative MP and Guinness trustee) to consider, amongst other things, how the supply
of working-class houses might be improved through public utility societies or
similar bodies.57 Its report made a number of recommendations
intended to
encourage and support the growth of voluntary housing societies and trusts, but

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49

scepticism within the Ministry of Health and opposition from local authorities
led to government rejection of ideas such as the creation of a Central Public
Utility Council (which would have been similar to the Housing Corporation, set
up thirty years later) .58 As a concession to the societies, and to the campaign led
by Sir Reginald Rowe (the chairman of the ITA), the government agreed to
provide financial support for a national body representing the voluntary organisations. This rapidly produced the National Federation of Housing Societies (NFHS)
in 1935, with Rowe as its first chairman. Naturally, the ITA was a founder member
of the NFHS, although the Guinness Trust initially declined to join.59
The Guinness Trust and the continuing Octavia Hill operation were both
much affected by rent control between the wars. Inflation during the war years
had increased costs, but income could not rise in proportion. In September 1920
the Trust introduced its first ever rent increase of 25 per cent, as it was allowed
to do under the rent restriction Acts.60 Rents were not increased again until after
the Second World War. The war also produced far-reaching social and political
changes which, amongst other things, raised public expectations in terms of
housing, hastened the obsolescence of the Trust's estates and made it appear to
be a relic of an earlier age. Nevertheless, the Trust was one of fewer than eighty
non-local authority bodies that took advantage of the subsidies available under
the Housing and Town Planning Act, 1919.61 Its first post-war estate, 160 flats at
Kennington Park Road, Southwark, was completed in 1921. In order to qualify
for subsidy the Trust had to meet the Ministry's minimum standards, which
meant that the specification had to be improved to include self-contained flats
and to exclude one room dwellings. Despite the application of subsidy on this
scheme the very high costs of construction and high interest rates produced
rents of up to 14s.9d. per week, at a time when it was widely felt that the
maximum affordable rent among the working class was only lOs. per week.62
As a company registered under the Companies Acts the ITA was not eligible for
1919 Act subsidy, and at the end of the war the situation was so bleak that the directors seriously considered selling the houses and winding up the company's affairs. 63
Throughout the 1910s the company had been unable to meet its aim of paying
shareholders a dividend of 4 per cent, and in 1920 it failed for, the first time, to pay
any dividend at all. However, by 1922 Rowe was able to tell shareholders that he felt
the company was on the threshold of new events.64 There seems to have been a
heightened level of public awareness of housing problems in North Kensington,
and growing determination to take action in the face of reluctance from the
Borough Council. The formation of a body called the Kensington Representative
Housing Committee (KRHC) led to the ITA seeking to raise a new tranche of
capital and to start buying houses once more; in the two years to October 1924 the
ITA raised 10,000, more than had been raised in the previous twenty years, and by
1926 the stock of houses had risen to 115.
The situation in Kensington at this time was that on the one hand there were
areas of gravely unsatisfactory housing, mainly in the north of the Borough in the
area where the ITA was active.65 On the other hand the council was clearly unwilling to become a large scale landlord, having built only 200 houses under the 1919
Act. InJanuary 1925 the KRHC produced a pamphlet highlighting the housing and
overcrowding problems in the Borough, prompting a response from the Council in
March in the form of a statement on its housing policy:

50

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... it is not their policy to become large owners of house property in the
Borough, as in their opinion the Authority charged with the general supervision of housing conditions in a particular district should not themselves acquire
houses unless real necessity to do so can be shown to exist. 66
This helps to explain why Kensington became an area in which by the end of the
inter-war period the Council had built only 1,050 dwellings, half the number
provided by a variety of housing societies and trusts.67 It also helps to explain why
Kensington was such fertile ground for voluntary housing organisations. It seems
that much of the action centred on a small group of wealthy people who were
involved with a number of different housing initiatives in the Borough. Thus in
1922 Dr Schuster, a director of the ITA from 1923 to 1925, established the Wilsham
Trust to take over the ownership of his property in Wilsham Street (the renamed St
Katherine's Road); Reginald Rowe (knighted in 1934), chairman of the ITA, was a
founder member of the management committee of the Kensington Housing Trust
(KHT), which was set up in 1926; also on that committee were Rachel Alexander,
who was a major financial backer of the ITA, and whose sister Mary was an ITA
director. The chairman of KHT was Lord Balfour of Burleigh, who was also a
member of the Borough Council and chairman of its Housing Committee. Also on
the Borough Council was Amy Hayne, a founder director of the ITA. In 1931 the
Alexander sisters set up the Aubrey Trust to take over a number of properties that
they had owned personally.68 This new trust employed the same independent housing manager, Miss Dicken, who had been managing the ITA stock since 1900.
By the end of the 1930s there were four separate organisations which had emerged
directly from work begun by Octavia Hill in north Kensington: the Horace Street
Trust, the ITA, the Wilsham Trust and the Aubrey Trust. They were quite closely
linked at the levels of both the trustees/board members, and day-to-day management. The Notting Hill properties owned by the Horace Street Trust and all those
of the Wilsham Trust were managed by the same independen t manager, Agnes Galton, who was described as an associate of Miss Dicken. Miss Galton later took over
Miss Dicken's ITA properties, while her sister Maud, who had worked with Octavia
Hill, managed the Horace Street Trust's properties in Southwark. Altogether the
four organisations had over 1,000 tenants in the Borough of Kensington, most of
them living in old houses let out by the room or by the floor. The tenants were
generally on very low incomes; those in Crescent Street, Becher Street and Sirdar
Road were described as 'the poorest people in Notting Dale - flower sellers, woodchoppers, casual workers and so forth, to whom any wet day meant a bad day for
money' .69Ownership of such property left the organisations vulnerable to action by
the local authority, using powers under the Housing Act, 1930, to clear areas of unfit
housing or to force owners to carry out improvements. The 1930 Act introduced the
notion of improvement areas, and although this was repealed in 1935 and made
very little impact overall, in one area of north Kensington, Kensal Town, where the
ITA had some houses, an improvement area was declared. The Association had to
devote considerable time and money to bringing its houses up to the standards
required. Elsewhere, in Becher Street (in the Notting Dale Special Area of the
1890s), during the late 1930s the ITA lost 200 tenants as a result of compulsory
purchase for slum clearance.7o On the other hand, the ITA was able to complete its

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AND CHANGE IN PHILANTHROPIC

HOUSING ORGANISATIONS

51

first new build scheme, of 16 flats, in 1938. The Aubrey Trust, too, undertook new
building in the late 1930s, but at 50 flats its largest project remained very small
compared with those of the Guinness Trust in the same period.
Mter Kennington Park Road the Guinness Trust built three more estates in the
period up to 1939, but none benefited from subsidy. The first was at King's Road,
Chelsea, where the Borough Council offered the Trust the site on a 999 year lease
of Is. per annum. This deal involved the Trust agreeing to give reasonable preference to people living in the borough, but it was not a nomination agreement in the
modern sense (i.e. tenants were not directly nominated from their own waiting list).
The second estate was at Stamford Hill, N16, and the third was at Loughborough
Park, Brixton, where the land was acquired from the LCC in exchange for a site
owned by the Trust on Holloway Road.71 In the period between the wars the Trust
managed to build over 1,100 dwellings, bringing the total up to nearly 3,700, but of
course this was a much slower rate of growth than had been achieved in the first ten
years. Unlike housing associations that were reliant upon shareholders for development capital, the Guinness Trust had the financial strength to carryon building,
although it maintained a very conservative attitude towards debt. This meant that
there was little money for modernisation of the oldest estates. Just before the
outbreak of war the trustees decided to begin the process of emptying two of its
oldest estates with the intention of redeveloping them, but of course in September
1939 these plans were put into abeyance.
Voluntary housing in a Welfare State
Sir Reginald Rowe died in January 1945, after nearly 45 years as chairman of the
ITA. The chairman of trustees at the Guinness Trust, the second Lord Iveagh, had
been a trustee since 1899, but he continued in the chair until 1962. At the end of
the war their respective organisations embarked on a prolonged period when they
were marginalised by successive governments, both Labour and Conservative, whose
housing policy priorities emphasised high levels of output to reduce the severe
overall shortage. Under the Labour government from 1945 to 1951 the emphasis
was heavily on building by local authorities, and this policy continued for some years
under the succeeding Conservative governments. Housing associations in this period
were steered in the direction of providing for elderly people and others who would
not normally qualify for council housing. Associations continued to be entitled to
Exchequer subsidies for new building and from 1949 there were grants to help with
improvements, but only if the improved dwellings met certain standards. During
the 1960s old established trusts and associations were joined by a number of newly
created bodies, most notably the Notting Hill Housing Trust and Paddington
Churches Housing Association, which were much more dynamic, expansionist and
culturally very different. Another feature which separated them from the older bodies was their willingness to take full advantage of the growing availability of loans
from the GLC and the Boroughs.
The story of the Guinness Trust in the thirty years after the War is one of
frustrated ambition in terms of development, and indecisiveness in the face of the
growing problem posed by the old estates. There is ample evidence in the files,
especially in the early years, of unsuccessful attempts to acquire and develop new
sites.72 The Trust accommodated itself to the government's expectations and became

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52

PETER MALPASS

involved in schemes for elderly people and other groups who would not qualify for
council housing. Four schemes were developed between 1948 and 1956, including
a 'residential club' for ageing women in Hampstead and an estate for a mixture of
elderly and young single people in West Ham, but the scale of the development
programme was such that in this period the Trust had built fewer new dwellings
than it lost in the War. In general the Boroughs were not supportive, in that they
preferred to concentrate on reserving available sites for their own building
programmes, although Chelsea was seen as an exception, and in the twenty years
after 1951 no new sites were purchased.73 However, during the 1950s the Trust carried out a programme of improving its oldest estates, financing the work mainly
from revenue income and bank overdraft, rather than external borrowing. All this
work was done without grant aid because the Trust was unable to bring its associated
tenements up to the required standard. Thus the improvements left tenants without
WCs in their flats, and they continued to share the estate bath houses. Some estates
were left without electricity until the 1960s.
Whereas changes at the Guinness Trust were marginal during the period 1945 to
1960, the Octavia Hill organisations began a series of mergers, leading towards the
creation of a recognisably modern housing association. First, in 1946 the Aubrey
Trust began the process of merging with the ITA, although separate accounts
continued to be produced until 1957.74 In 1950 the ITA board converted the
company to charitable status (largely for income tax reasons) and at the same time
changed the name to the Rowe Housing Trust. Second, the Horace Street Trust
purchased all of the 167 houses owned by the Wilsham Trust. The first approach
came from the Wilsham Trust in 1954 but it was not until 1961 that the process was
completed.75 In 1957 the Horace Street Trust decided to change its name to the
Octavia Hill Housing Trust, and joined the National Federation of Housing Societies.76 Later, and as part of completing the purchase of the Wilsham Trust properties, it was decided to convert the Trust into an Industrial and Provident Society, to
be known as the Octavia Hill Housing Association, which was duly registered in
1961. An interesting feature of the new association was that four of its first seven
committee members were members of Octavia Hill's family, although since she had
no children none was a direct descendant.
In the post war period the Octavia Hill organisations continued their activities in
North Kensington but, like the Guinness Trust, there was a change of emphasis, in
their case awayfrom the long established concen tration on improving the houses of
the poorest people in the area. New building projects after the War included a
scheme for elderly people retiring from domestic service and the conversion of
three large houses into small flats for retired professional people. In other ways,
however, the Trust continued the Octavia Hill traditions and apart from the
maintenance team all the staff were women.
During the 1960s the Guinness Trust and the two Octavia Hill organisations were
affected by the slum clearance and comprehensive redevelopment policies pursued
by the LCC and later the GLC, and the Boroughs in which they worked. The loss of
two Guinness estates in this way came as something of a relief to the trustees who
had been concerned about what to do with their older estates. The old tenement
buildings were grim places, sorely in need of redevelopment or major modernisation, but shortage of funds, a reluctance to borrow on a large scale and a lack of

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HOUSING ORGANISATIONS

53

strategic planning meant that they remained an embarrassment to the trustees. It is


not unreasonable to conclude that the Trust lacked a clear sense of direction at this
time. The board of trustees consisted overwhelmingly of people appointed because
they were Guinness family members rather than for any knowledge of, or interest in,
housing, and far removed by wealth and experience from the work of the Trust. 77
During 1968 and 1969 the Trust faced quite serious financial problems, and in
order to develop a viable strategy for the future in ,December 1970 the trustees
commissioned a report from james Macnabb, the former Secretary of the Peabody
Trust.7s Macnabb's Report, submitted in April 1971, proved to be a crucial development in the history of the Guinness Trust. He proposed that the trustees should
modernise the remaining estates of associated tenements and that they should
abandon their financial conservatism which had cut them off from the supply of
public loans, grants and subsidies that had 1:?eengrowing in recent years. Macnabb's
strategy envisaged an expansion of investment based on long term borrowing on a
scale never previously contemplated by the Trust. His other radical proposal was
that the Trust should seek to develop outside London, where development opportunities would be more readily available. Land would be cheaper and some local
authorities, and new town development corporations, could be expected to be more
welcoming. Finally, he pointed to the need to ensure that senior staff had the energy
and initiative to implement the strategy, a coded suggestion that a new Director
should be appointed.
The main proposals were accepted and implementation began straight away.During 1972 a new Director took up his post and substantial loans were negotiated from
the GLC, Southwark Council and Islington Council, bringing total proposed borrowing up to 1.5 million. When set alongside the 150,000 of outstanding loans at
the end of 1970 this shows the scale and rapidity of the progress being achieved. As
it turned out, the changes made by the Guinness Trust were well timed to put it in
a good position to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the Housing Act,
1974. In one sense no other trust or association was better placed: the Minister of
Housing in the Conservative government that drew up the legislation was Paul
Channon, a great-grandson of Edward Guinness and himself a trustee from 1959 to
1970.
Meanwhile, the Rowe Housing Trust had been suffering losses of property due to
redevelopment in north Kensington, including the construction of the Westway,
which destroyed the very first houses bought by the ITA in 1900. It also lost the
whole of its portfolio of property in Kensal Town. It was involved in mergers with the
Business Women's Housing Association in 1967 and with the Fulham Housing
Improvement Society in 1968, but in terms of the evolution of a single organisation
embodying the Octavia Hill tradition the merger between the Octavia Hill Housing
Association and the Rowe Housing Trust in 1974 was the most significant event.
This merger was prompted by an approach in 1972 from OHHA to Rowe asking it
to take over the management of its 319 properties, with a view to subsequent
merger. This merger created an association with around 1,000 dwellings, just in
time to take advantage of the new framework created by the 1974 Housing Act.79
The new Trust was clearly a modern housing association in the constitutional
sense - it had a set of rules approved by the Registrar of Friendly Societies, a
management committee which met regularly and a full-time professional staff. In

54

PETER

~,IALP ASS

many ways it was very different from those key forerunner bodies, the Horace Street
Trust, the ITA and the Aubrey Trust, but there were also indicators of continuityin terms of the membership of the management committee, the exclusive employment of women, the style of working and the commitment to professional training.

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Conclusion
The evidence discussed above has shed new light on what happened in the period
leading to the watershed legislation of 1974 to organisations representing two
important strands of philanthropic housing with nineteenth-century origins. Different examples would have produced accounts that differed in terms of detail, and
there is clearly a case for looking at some organisations that did not survive. There
is also a case for work on the associations that emerged with such vigour in the
1960s. Nevertheless, the evidence has illustrated the extent to which Victorian
philanthropic housing organisations differed from each other, and how different
they were from modern housing associations. Octavia Hill was undoubtedly an
innovator and pioneer ofa new approach to housing for the poor of London, while
Edward Guinness was much more inclined to follow paths already charted by others. Just how much either of them can be said to have influenced housing provision
and practice in London today is very difficult to determine. Both were soon perceived
as largely irrelevant to the policies required to tackle the housing problem in its
post-1918 formulation, and they became even more obviously old fashioned after
1945.
In terms of an interest in the themes of continuity and change, it is the lack of real
change in the Guinness Trust and the Octavia Hill organisations that is most striking. Reference has been made to the very long service given by some board
members and trustees, and by some staff, especially in the first half of the century,
and there is more evidence on the same subject. Given the durability of houses it is
not surprising that in 1970 the organisations were managing many of the same
dwellings that they had in 1900, but it is more surprising that the dwellings themselves
had changed so little. The organisations too would also have been recognisable to
those involved at the start of the century; as late as 1971 the head office staff of the
Guinness Trust consisted of just six or seven people, and the Rowe Housing Trust
was similarly thinly staffed. As a consequence of the weight of tradition both
organisations were seen as out of touch with the newly emerging culture amongst
volun tary housing associations in the 1960s. They were easily outflanked by the new
associations working in the same geographical areas.
The account provided here in relation to housing would probably find parallels
with other kinds of Victorian charitable welfare organisations. The story is essentially
one of how voluntary agencies survived in the growing shadow of public sector
organisations, especially in the post-1945 welfare state. In the last quarter of the
century, however, the Beveridge welfare state has been in retreat and there has been
renewed emphasis on the role oEnon-statutory bodies contracted to provide services
to people in need. The final comment must be that both the Guinness Trust and the
OHHT, in common with other voluntary organisations with similarly deep roots,
have probably changed more since 1974 than in the whole of the twentieth century
up to that point.

CONTINUITY AND CHANGE IN PHILANTHROPIC

HOUSING ORGANISATIONS

55

NOTES
This article is based on research supported by the Octavia Hill Housing Trust and the Guinness Trust and their assistance, in particular the provision of access to archive material, is
gratefully acknowledged. The main sources were minutes of the meetings of the Guinness
Trustees from December 1889, held by the Trust at its head office in High Wycombe, and
minutes of the meetings of the board of directors of the ITA from 1901, together with
reports of annual general meetings, stored at Kensington Library, along with similar records
for the Aubrey Trust. Some material on the Horace Street Trust is held at the Octavia Hill
Birthplace Museum, Wisbech. Valuable assistance was provided by staff at the Local History
Section of Kensington Library and the Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum.

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1.

2.
3.
4.

5.

6.
7.
8.

9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.

17.
18.

Owner occupation in London in 1995 amounted to 57%, compared with 68%


in England as a whole, local authority housing stood at 22% compared with 18%,
and the private sector was 15% compared with 10%, see Regional Trends 1997
(HMSO).
D. Page, Buildingfor Communities, (York, 1993),35.
NHF Directory of Members 1997, (National Housing Federation, 1997), 199.
W. Ashworth, The Genesis of Modern British Town Planning, (1954); D. Owen, English
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an account of housing in urban areas between 1840 and 1914, (Cambridge, 1973); E.
Gauldie, Cruel Habitations, (1974); R. Dennis, 'The Geography of Victorian values:
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(1989), pp. 40-54; A. Wohl, The Eternal Slum, (1977).
R. Best, 'Housing Associations: 1890-1990' in S. Lowe and D. Hughes, (eds) A New
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Wohl, Eternal Slum, 360-361; G. Stedman Jones, Outcast London, (1971), 326; Housing,
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J. Tarn, Five Per Cent Philanthropy: an account of housing in urban areas between 1840 and
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in the Post-1832 UK, (Lampeter, 1995) 85-125.
Annual Report 1963, (National Federation of Housing Societies, 1964), 17; Artizans
Centenary 1867-1967, (Artizans' and General Properties Company Ltd, 1967), 43.
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56

19.
20.

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21.
22.
23.
24.
25.
26.
27.
28.
29.
30.
31.
32.
33.
34.
35.
36.
37.
38.
39.
40.
41.
42.
43.
44.
45.
46.
47.
48.
49.
50.
51.
52.
53.
54.
55.
56.
57.
58.
59.
60.

PETER MALPASS

Nolting Hill: the growth and development of the Octavia Hill Housing Trust, (Octavia Hill Housing Trust 1999); R. Dennis, 'Geography of Victorian values'; idem 'Hard to let' in Edwardian London', Urban Studies, 26, (1989), pp. 77-89.
Gauldie, Cruel Habitations, 234.
Ashworth, Genesis of Town Planning, 82; Gauldie, Cruel habitations, 213-235; J. White,
'Business out of Charity' inJ. Goodwin and C. Grant (eds) Built to Last? (Shelter, 1997),
9-16.
Emsley, Development of Housing Associations, 36.
Royal Commission on the Housing of the Working Classes, Minutes of Evidence, 297.
Brion, Women in Housing, 13.
Emsley, Development of Housing Associations, 60.
Dennis, 'Hard to Let', 79.
D. Englander, Landlord and Tenant in Urban Britain 1838-1918 (1983),116.
H. Pearman, Excellent Accommodation: the first hundred years of the Industrial Dwellings
Society, (Industrial Dwellings Society, 1985); 31-34.
S. Jenkins, Landlords to London (1975).
Dennis, 'Geography of Victorian Values', 50-51.
Emsley, Development of Housing Associations, 55-66; Dennis, 'Hard to Let', 81.
Emsley, Development of Housing Associations, 43.
O. Hill, Letters to Fellow Workers 1864-1911, (1933 edition, compiled by Elinor Southwood Ouvry) , 5.
ibid, 13; Darley, Octavia Hill, 147.
ibid, 295.
'Avernus' derives from a legendary lake so foul that no birds could fly over it.
Survey of London, Vol XXXVII, Northern Kensington, (1973).
Harloe, People's Home?, 16.
Stedman Jones, Outcast London, 225.
J. White, Rothschild Buildings: Life in an East End Tenement Block 1887-1920, (1980);
Gauldie, Cruel Habitations, 235.
D. Olsen, The Growth of Victorian London (1976), 280.
Wohl, Eternal Slum, 164 Stedman Jones, Outcast London, 223.
A. Power, Property Before People; P. Kemp and P. Williams, 'Housing management: an
historical perspective', in S. Lowe and D. Hughes (eds) A New Century of Social Housing.
Hill, Letters, 13.
Guinness Trust, Minutes of Trustees' meeting, 24July 1891.
Calculated from first lettings data in the estate ledger at Fulham Palace Road
ibid
Dennis, 'Hard to Let'.
ITA Report of the AGM, October 1911.
D. Bryne, and S. Darner, 'The State, the Balance of Class Forces, and Early Working Class
Housing Legislation' in Housing, Construction and the State (1980), 67.
M. Miller, Letchworth, the First Garden City (Chichester 1989),75-79.
M. Swenarton, Homes for Heroes. (1981),163-178.
Owen, English Philanthropy, 387.
Brion, Women in Housing, 12.
ibid, 24.
Skilleter, 'Role of Public Utility Societies' ; Swenarton, Homes fit for Heroes, 84.
A.Jackson, Semi-Detached London (1973), 157.
Garside, 'Central Government, Local authorities and the Voluntary Housing Sector'.
Report of the Departmental Committee on Housing (HMSO, 1933, Cmd 4397).
GT Minutes, 11 February 1936.
GT Minutes, 7 May 1920 and 18January 1921.

CONTINUITY AND CHANGE IN PHILANTHROPIC

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HOUSING ORGANISATIONS

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Annual Report of the Ministry of Health 1922-23 (HMSO, 1923, Cmd 1944), 142.
M. Bowley, Housing and the State 1919-1944 (1945), 208.
ITA Report of the AGM, November 1919 and October 1920.
ITA Report of the AGM, November 1922.
Kensington Representative Housing Committee, A Challenge to the Ratepayers of Kensington
U anuary 1925).
Kensington Borough Council, Statement on Housing, March 1925.
Surveys: Royal Borough of Kensington, (1951), 107.
Record of the first meeting of the Aubrey Trust, 30 March 1931.
ITA Report of the AGM, July 1928.
Becher Street properties were sold to Kensington Borough Council for 26,000; ITA,
Report of the AGM,June 1939.
GT Minutes, 27 June 1935.
GT Minutes 1944-1947 refer to sites at Cadogan Avenue, Upcerne Road, Waterloo and
Hanger Hill. See also the Secretary's report for 1945.
GT Secretary's report for 1944.
Aubrey Trust Minutes, 4 September 1946.
Octavia Hill Housing Association, Minutes of 25 April 1961 and 22 September 1961.
Horace Street Trust, Minutes 4 December 1957.
By 1959 13 out of 16 trustees were Guinness family members.
Malpass, 1998,51-52.
Malpass, 1999,47-51.