Community Action - The fight for fair conditions

Blackfriars SE1 in the 1970s

Community Action - The fight for fair conditions

England E1 6FQ, United Kingdom

Created By: SE1 Stories


This walk starts on Blackfriars Road at the junction with Pocock Street, about 200 yards south from Southwark underground station.

Community workers and volunteers worked alongside community leaders and local residents campaigning for better housing and social conditions. The area housed many people in overcrowded and inadequate accommodation.

A lack of open space, community facilities, essential shops and poor school buildings added to the general feeling of neglect. With the docks moved downstream and many long established local industries closed, large amounts of land became available, opening up a fierce debate over what should replace these former uses.

It was a period of huge empowerment for local residents. Campaigns, protests and direct action were the tools to force local authorities and developers to recognise the communities’ needs. Estate tenants formed associations to negotiate with their landlords and community groups flourished.

There were great successes like at Coin Street with new housing, Colombo Street Sports & Community Centre and the saving of important facilities such as chemists, post offices and launderettes.

This point of interest is part of the tour: Blackfriars SE1 in the 1970s


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