These are always popular, so this 1930s Berthold Lubetkin house in Haywards Heath, West Sussex, might find a buyer quickly.
I did feature one back in 2020 (if you want to compare and contrast), and they do come up occasionally in varying conditions. But luckily, the grade II listings mean they are usually pretty faithful to the original 1936 design, although fittings and condition vary wildly.
This small group of houses did go under the radar for some years but now are firmly on the map for fans of 1930s modern architecture. Not least because they come in a lot cheaper than some of the more statement designs of the time.
I’m not saying this is cheap – few houses are these days – but a Berthold Lubetkin design for £500k isn’t to be sniffed at. And it’s probably a commutable distance, too. Haywards Heath station has a connection to London Bridge and London Victoria, with a journey time of around 45 minutes.
Space tends to be fairly modest, but that’s not surprising. Lubetkin was commissioned by the client, Tecton, to design a pilot scheme of ‘modern houses for ordinary people’. The scheme was intended to extend to something like 60 hones, but that never happened. Instead, we got eight houses, with designs walking a line between traditional houses of the time and the more design-led builds Tecton was known for.
Each followed one of three distinct layouts: ‘Type A’, the smallest, semi-detached; ‘Type B’, two detached homes; and ‘Type C’, characterised by ‘curved concrete porches’ and the fireplace with its enclosed stair snaking around the chimney. As you might have worked out, this is one of the smaller builds, which still offers 960 sq. ft. of living space over its two floors, plus a decent anoint of outside space too.
One thing to note about this one is that it has been updated over recent years. But the frame of the house and some of the key design features within remain untouched. The rest is down to you. Most of the update revolves around fixtures and finishes, and as ever, that’s likely to change from owner to owner.
A paved front driveway provides private off-street parking, and front gardens are planted with mature shrubs, beds and borders. The main entrance, accessed by a side passageway, is set on the easterly facade and leads into a central hallway.
Angular architecture aside, the defining feature, from both inside and out, is the long line of Crittall windows (now with louvred wooden shutters). Not just good-looking, they also guarantee plenty of natural light throughout the day.
The reception space is largely open-plan. Original floorboards run underfoot, and a modern log burner sits in the middle. The dining room is interconnected, accessed via the 1930s bi-folding doors, and large Crittall doors overlook the garden.
A modern kitchen is to the side, but note that the original bell system remains intact on one wall. An external door leads to the upper terrace and gardens.
Head up one of the key design features, the curved staircase, and you access three double bedrooms and a family bathroom.
As for the outside, I mentioned the front space earlier, but the rear has upper terraces that lead from the side passage or kitchen and down into the rear gardens.
The original garage lies to one side, with a garden studio or workshop added in recent years. Planning permission is in place to demolish the garage and extend the house, allowing for the construction of a new ground-floor kitchen/breakfast room, a utility space with a WC, and a lower-ground-floor home office. But you might want to work with what’s there instead if you want to keep the authenticity.
Beyond that is the main garden, made up of lawn bordered by perennial beds and borders, with mature woodland at the foot of the garden. An additional outhouse at the end hosts a brick-built, wood-fired oven.
That’s pretty much it. On the market now with a price of £500,000.
Images and details courtesy of The Modern House. For more details and to make an enquiry, please visit the website.