Walters Way and Segal Close The Architect Walter Segal and London's Self-Build Community

Front cover image

Alice Grahame, Taran Wlkhu

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Park Books
Territory: UK, Ireland, Scandinavia, Benelux, Southern Europe, Eastern Europe, Middle East, China, Hong Kong, Central and South America
Size: 255 mm x 205 mm
Pages: 232
Illustrations: 142 colour, 19 b&w

RRP £30.00

  • Tells the story of an unusual housing estate in south London designed by Walter Segal and of its 'anarchist' inhabitants
  • Shows all houses of the entire estate during their construction and their present state
  • Features the German-born architect Walter Segal, a strong proponent of the 1970s self-builders movement

Walters Way and Segal Close are two tiny roads in Lewisham, south London. The twenty homes they contain are unusual, both in the way they look and in the way they were conceived and built. Designed by German-born modernist architect Walter Segal, they were part of a council-run scheme that allowed ordinary people to build their own homes. Thirty years on they are still standing and have been adapted to meet the needs of today's residents.

This book by two residents of Walters Way and Segal Close, journalist Alice Grahame and photographer Taran Wilkhu, tells the story of how the streets came to be built and of the estate's development since. Neither Grahame nor Wilkhu are the initial inhabitants of their respective homes, but when they moved in they both became instantly fascinated by the story of how and why they were made. The book was created in collaboration with the occupants of both streets, who all opened their houses and shared their insights of life on a Segal estate.

'Walter Segal was nothing if not a holistic pioneer. He recognised that architecture serves one noble purpose: social health. His schemes, projects, community groups, systems and designs all served, and continue to serve, the creation of that magic social glue.' -Kevin McCloud. Designer, writer and presenter of Channel 4's Grand Designs

Alice Grahame lives and works as a freelance journalist in London. In 2015 The Guardian published her reportage on Walter Segal's self-build houses in London. Taran Wilkhu is a photographer specialsing in lifestyle, architecture, and interior design.

What the press have said about this book...

It is stories like this that explain the enduring fascination of Walters Way, 30 years old this year, and its sister development, about a mile away in the same borough, Segal Close. Both are celebrated in a new book, written by one resident, Alice Grahame, and photographed by another, Taran Wilkhu, with an accompanying event at the Building Centre in London. They draw crowds every year at Open House weekend and are the objects of pilgrimages by architecture students. - The Guardian