The Moving Prefab

As 2016 marks 70 years of post-war prefabs, it is the ideal year to get our Moving Prefab travelling on Britain’s roads.

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Oral histories and photos, posts on local forums and comments on blogs, are often the only record that some prefabs existed at all and anyone ever lived in them.

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Our prefab location map started life at the museum. We carefully mapped the prefabs people told us about in the visitors’ book and from the flags stuck in our map

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Prefabs in the Outer Hebrides

The first time I went to The Outer Hebrides was in May 2009. I remember perfectly. I was there for work. We were shooting a story on minks for a French TV channel. I was smitten by the beauty of the place and by its diversity: long and wild beaches, mini fjords, standing stones from…

A tribute to Ted Carter, our friend and Excalibur prefab resident

Jane and I are very sad to hear that Excalibur Resident Ted Carter died at the end of last week. Here are a few words about our prefab friend and a video I shot in 2013. I was privileged to know Ted through Trevor’s regular computer class at the community centre and the Prefab Museum….

Mapping post-war prefabs part 2 – industrial London

This blog post is something of a ramble, to start the new year. There is a lot of talk about gentrification, how London is not the same as it used to be. We have what is described as a housing crisis with overcrowding and homelessness on the rise, politicians tinkering with the notion of what…

Prefabs in North Derbyshire

In 2005, I was contacted by a prefab enthusiast, Graham Burton, who lived in a prefab in North Wingfield, North Derbyshire. Passionate about the prefab he had bought in the 90s, he had collected lots of information about prefabs, their history, their location … He had found out about my documenting work on prefabs through…

Swedish Post-War Prefabricated Houses – location list (updated 3 August 2017)

Prefab Scouts – help needed! Neil is compiling a location list of Swedish post-war prefabs (sometimes known as Swedish or Swedish timber houses). He grew up in a Swedish house in Pool-in-Wharfedale, Yorkshire, which is still in his family. The houses were imported from Sweden at the end of WW2 to designs from the UK….

Politics and prefabs

“People have got the idea that it (prefabrication) means jerry building, tumbledown shacks, caravans, shoddy work, ribbon development, draughts and leaks and everything that’s bad in building. The Government itself seems to hold the confused opinion that prefabricated means temporary”.  Picture Post, 1945 Here is a quote from The Times, 12 November 2016, following an…

Prefabs in France

“Are there any post-war prefabs in France?” I am often asked this question. So here I am, trying in a few paragraphs to sum up what I know about post-war prefabs on the other side of the Channel. My first memories of them go back to the 80s when I used to see some on…

Festive update from the Prefab Museum!

Dear Prefab Lovers, 2016 is coming to its end and has been a fantastic prefab year: after years of prefabs commitment, we were awarded last May a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to pursue our moving prefab activities. Since, we organised nine events in and outside London, developed our prefab archive, released two issues…

How my passion for prefabs made me a calendar girl

I have always wanted to be a pin-up on a calendar. After all, that’s how Marilyn Monroe started her career… As I early realised I probably didn’t have the attributes nor the connections within the pin-up industry, I decided to give up the idea and focus on… prefabs. It was quite a niche, more than…

Mapping Britain’s post-war prefabs

I started plotting the online prefab locations map nearly two years ago, a couple of months after we closed the Prefab Museum in Catford in November 2014. The physical map on the wall in the hallway was smoke damaged and I had to rely on photos we had taken of it, entries in the visitors’…

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