Is the bun­ga­low dream at an end?

The Daily Telegraph - Property - - Architectu­re - FOR SALE BUNGA-BUN­GA­LOWS

What a dif­fer­ence half a cen­tury makes. In the years af­ter the Se­cond World War, bun­ga­lows were be­ing built by the thou­sands to house peo­ple whose homes had been de­stroyed in the Blitz.

From be­ing a quick-fix, post-war way to put a roof over peo­ple’s heads, the bun­ga­low now seems to be on the prop­erty black­list.

That th­ese homes ful­fil a vi­tal func­tion, es­pe­cially for the el­derly, is be­yond dis­pute. And while the num­ber of bun­ga­lows be­ing built is di­min­ish­ing, our age­ing pop­u­la­tion is on the rise. In 2012, the num­ber of peo­ple in the UK aged over 80 was three mil­lion; by 2037 that fig­ure will have dou­bled to 6.1 mil­lion.

Time, you would think, for the Govern­ment to be an­nounc­ing a pro­gramme of mass bun­ga­low­build­ing. In­stead, the op­po­site is hap­pen­ing. “There have been vir­tu­ally no bun­ga­lows built in new hous­ing schemes here for more than 20 years,” says Michael Dukes, agency part­ner at Greenslade Tay­lor Hunt, which cov­ers Som­er­set, Devon and Dorset. “It’s un­likely this will change un­less there are strong land­scape or town­scape rea­sons to do so.”

Far from us­ing land to build sin­gle-floor res­i­dences with gar­dens, de­vel­op­ers are more in­ter­ested in erect­ing lu­cra­tive three- or four-floor houses, and blocks of flats.

“We have peo­ple con­stantly ask­ing for bun­ga­lows,” says es­tate agent Paul Preen of Lang Town and Coun­try, in the Ply­mouth sub­urbs.

“In my area, there is plan­ning ap­proval for around 8,000 prop­er­ties, none of which, I think, will be bun­ga­lows.”

At the other end of the coun­try, the same story ap­plies. “We have one or two bun­ga­lows on the books, but they are in rel­a­tively short sup­ply,” says Will Tod of Hay­ward Tod es­tate agents in Cum­bria. “New-house builders are un­der pres­sure to make money and make land vi­able, so they see no value in wast­ing the land on a bun­ga­low when they can put two or three smaller houses on the plot, or in­deed one large house,” he says.

As for bun­ga­lows nearer the cap­i­tal, th­ese come at roughly twice the price of those in more out­ly­ing ar­eas.

“I can only think of a cou­ple of bun­ga­lows built in Wey­bridge over the past 10 years or so,” says Steven Woodroffe, a part­ner at Martin Flash­man es­tate agents. “And they were prob­a­bly only built due to plan­ning re­stric­tions, oth­er­wise the builder would have built a house.”

The word “bun­ga­low” first en­tered the English lan­guage 320 years ago and re­ferred to a sin­gle-floor house, built in the Ben­gal style. Tanya Bed­ford from Marc­hand Pe­tit be­lieves that the bun­ga­low should be cher­ished. “No need to sound the A mod­ernised, three-bed­room bun­ga­low in New For­est Na­tional Park

The hum­ble bun­ga­low is un­der threat. But they should be the houses of the fu­ture, says Christo­pher Mid­dle­ton

A mod­ernised, three-bed­room open-plan bun­ga­low A mod­ern, three­bed bun­ga­low

Grounded: The Pav­il­ion (yet to be built) for sale with Strutt & Parker (01865 366660) main; in­te­rior of Mills­ford Lodge, above

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