History of the Village Housing from 1945 onwards...
history of housing in Bere Regis indicates that until around
the time of the 2nd World War it was provided in the main by
the estates and employers so that housing and employment were
closely associated. Older parishioners have spoken of their
fortune in being 'given' a cottage to live in soon after their
marriage. As older employees moved from jobs so a cottage would
become available for the employee.
& her cottage
this situation had severe limitations and though some employers
provided some new cottages there was still a severe shortage
of housing. The Parish Council is recorded as requesting the
District Council to build houses for the parishioners, hence
we now see Green Close, Egdon Close, Southbrook & Shitterton
Close. These houses must have been a great relief to the many
then young people trying to set up their homes and families
at that time.
Close in the 1950's
the 1940's and 1950's the estates could be seen to be reducing
the numbers of cottages that they held as the work on the land
and forests became less labour intensive. Cottages were sold
to the tenants for prices which today would seem a pittance.
Subsequently, as the older parishioners died or moved away,
these same cottages were sold on and attracted prices way beyond
the reach of the parishioners who previously would have occupied
them in due course.
of the Cottages sold off in Shitterton in the 1940's
few new individual houses were built throughout the Parish in
the post war years. The small development at Boswell's Close
were erected by Messrs Griffin & Son in the 1960's. The
major public housing on the south side of West Street and to
the west of the Church came in the late 1970's. This was in
response to a shortage of housing in the District generally.
Naturally homeless parishioners were included but as a result
of this development there was a considerable increase in people
moving into the parish from other parts of the District. Though
it provided housing it was not always a satisfactory solution
as people moving from Upton and away from their area of work,
it involved a long journey each day. For local people it meant
that young people who had by now married, could set up homes
independent of their parents. The development was designed to
serve the requirements of all ages on the Housing register,
thus we see flats, houses, bungalows for elderly people and
a sheltered housing scheme. There was criticism at the time
for building so close to the Church.
1980's saw the reduction in the provision of new public housing
and there was an encouragement to build houses for purchase
by individuals. The estate at the western end of Elder Road
with its two satellite roads resulted. Regrettably many of these
houses were beyond the affordable range of young parishioners
and so there was again a large influx of new people both retired
and from the new 'industries' within the conurbation. A few
individual houses have since been built on infilling sites such
as the Old Chapel and Bus Depot, Snowhill & Shitterton.
Infill on West Street
to the Village History Page