Thamesmead attempted to portray a unique architectural and social vision. ‘Post war utopian optimism’ had dwindled, with modernist architecture being deemed a failure. Three years after the release of Kubrick’s, A Clockwork Orange, Greater London Council released a promotional film called ‘Living in Thamesmead’. The video documented livelihood in a diverse and thriving space. The concrete coldness of Thamesmead does little to explain the inherent social, cultural and economic issues. The reason for these issues lies in lack of investment and an ill developed infrastructure to the remainder of London.
The image of Thamesmead as a dystopian haven of the underworld has allowed developers to encroach on the estate. Some argue that the failure of post-war housing is the ‘justification for the governments drastic scaling back of public housing provision’. The influence of Peabody will likely create a space involved in the price of property over community. Only 45% of the new homes they intend on constructing will be affordable. Existing social housing will remain, with no additional stock being supplied.
The Thamesmead portrayed in popular culture will alter from recognition over the next decade. For now it will remain a commodity for television dramas and interest pieces (such as this).