When I was working for a time in a northern town, I was housed in a corporation property; it came with the job and we were placed on an estate right up above the town. It was more economical to get the bus in to town and I used to scamper up to the top floor so I could enjoy the views over the most amazing countryside. Several miles of heath and moorland stood between me and the office. It was truly glorious. More than could be said for the ugly, meanly proportioned houses on my estate. They had been built in the late 1960s as an emergency measure to house the masses and had all the basics – but not a redeeming feature that I could find. Today’s new social housing is so much prettier and thoughtfully designed to offer some dignity to the resident, not just a brick carbuncle in a small garden space.