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Housing Politics in the United KingdomPower, Planning and Protest$
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Brian Lund

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781447327073

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447327073.001.0001

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Urban renewal: fencing the cities

Urban renewal: fencing the cities

(p.61) Three Urban renewal: fencing the cities
Housing Politics in the United Kingdom

Brian Lund

Policy Press

This chapter begins with an examination of 19th century public health politics exploring why Edwin Chadwick’s explanation of differential mortality rates was politically acceptable whilst an alternative explanation was rejected. It then investigates the slum and overcrowding issues relating action to alleviate the problem to the idea of externalities, the eugenics movement and the vested interests involved in property. The Conservative Party’s sanitary solution and Labour’s suburban answer to the housing question are explored. The 1950s and 1960s slum clearance drive is related to Green Belts and the politics involved in containing urban Britain. Area based policies are reviewed as are policy switches between property and people based initiatives. The Coalition government’s abandonment of specific area-based initiatives in favour of a whole city approach is examined.

Keywords:   overcrowding, Edwin Chadwick, slum, externalities, eugenics, area policy

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