Walters Way & Segal Close: Walter Segal and London’s Self-build Communities

Thirty years on from the completion of Walters Way and Segal Close, a new title from Park Books reviews the story of these remarkable streets.

In 1977 German-born architect Walter Segal equipped a team of ordinary men and women to design and build their own homes on two sites in south London.

The first council-run self-build housing scheme of its kind in the UK, the project brought together retired men, single mothers and families with young children to erect 20 bespoke homes using an innovative new building method designed by Segal.

Reducing construction to its simplest elements, the Segal method utilised readily available materials and circumvented the need for specialist skills. The outcome was a series of highly individual, lightweight timber-framed houses which could be easily adapted to the needs of the occupants.

Produced by local residents, writer Alice Grahame and photographer Taran Wilkhu, this book examines the self-build story, the legacy of Walter Segal and life on these unusual estates. With contributions from Segal’s original self-builders, contemporary residents, architects and associates, it offers a rare insight into these exceptional homes.

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See inside Taran Wilkhu’s own home on Segal Close.

Read about our other August highlights.