The first stop was the Hugh Cubitt centre in Kings Cross. It is a community centre for The Kings Cross Estates and built by Peabody after the estates were transferred from Islington council about 15 years ago. The centre is the first port of call for residents to enquire about a number of services and report housing issues. It also has a café, holds classes and has a large hall that can be hired for private functions.
We were then taken for a tour of the Priory Green Estate. This estate was built in the late 1950s and prior to transfer had a lot of anti-social problems. Peabody completely overhauled the estate and installed state of the art CCTV. Further information about Priory Green can be found here http://www.lovelondoncouncilhousing.com/2013/02/a-lesson-in-love-priory-green-estate.html
After lunch the tour headed off to the Islington Estate. This estate is the second Peabody estate built and the oldest still owned by Peabody. Built in 1865 it is Grade II listed and a good example of improvements made in keeping with the original design. Prior to the changes the outdoor areas consisted of areas of tarmac with the occasional tree and children’s play area. There are now more trees, plants and an improved play area.
The one thing I learned from the visit was that when seeking to make changes Peabody hold consultations and residents are encouraged to voice their opinions. They listen and are sensitive to points of view so who knows what exciting things are in store for Thamesmead.