A programme of art, culture and new infrastructure to reimagine the future of the UK’s biggest council housing estate



Radical housing: A coach tour

Royal Institute of British Architects

23 October 2021

2021 marks the centenary of the first completed buildings on the Becontree Estate, which when built was the largest council estate in the world. Join RIBA and Focal Point Gallery on a day long tour focusing on radical examples of housing between London and Essex.

The day long tour will start at RIBA (66 Portland Place, London) before travelling to Becontree where we will hear from the artist Verity-Jane Keefe who has a longstanding working relationship with the area, alongside RIBA Curator Pete Collard, who has been working with Keefe on RIBA's upcoming exhibition Lived in Architecture - Becontree Estate at 100.

Leaving Becontree, we plan to drive through Gidea Park with a spotlight on some of the homes from the 1911 Modern Homes Exhibition before continuing to Focal Point Gallery, Southend-on-Sea. We will be met by Deputy Director Hayley Dixon for a tour of their current exhibition Tip of the Iceberg and an overview of their much celebrated ongoing Radical ESSEX programme.

Before returning to RIBA, the coach will make a final stop at the Bata Estate in East Tilbury, the site of the exemplary modernist workers’ housing for the Bata shoe factory.

The tour will take place on Saturday 23 October, 9am-5.30pm. Tickets cost RIBA Members: £40, General: £50, + booking fees. To find out more click here.

RIBA is offering a number of complimentary tickets to local residents, if you’re interested in attending an event please contact talks@riba.org

To view more RIBA events taking place over the Becontree centenary click here.

66 Portland Place

RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) is a global professional membership body driving excellence in architecture. They serve their members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment. Being inclusive, ethical, environmentally aware and collaborative underpins all that they do.

This event is part of the Becontree Centenary, a partnership between Create London and RIBA, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.