Twelve Views of Kensal House

Film, Documentaries

Time Out says

Wyeth's documentary investigates Maxwell Fry's ideas when he designed one of Britain's first modern flat complexes in London's Ladbroke Grove. Fry's views were basically well-founded, if a little blinkered and paternalistic, determined to create a better environment for working-class tenants. But what in the late '30s was something of an idyllic community project, has become an archetypal North Ken wasteland, semi-derelict, under-funded, and devoid of any sense of purpose or friendship. It's not so much the fault of Fry and the Gas Board, who constructed the block as a publicity stunt, as of the increasing poverty - both economic and social - of Britain at large. Nor are the tenants entirely blameless. Several of those interviewed sadly and characteristically lay the blame for the death of their community on the influx of immigrants (commonly referred to as 'bad' or 'rough' types). A fascinating look at the aims and effects of social architecture which is warmly human and sharply analytical, and which offers insights, by implication, on the changes in postwar British society.

By: GA


Release details

55 mins

Cast and crew

Peter Wyeth
Peter Wyeth
Maxwell Fry
Stephen Bayley
Lady Newall
Margaret Wilson
Eva Wilson
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