INTERPRETATION ACTIVITY ON HOUSING IN THE POST-WAR YEARS

You can find the answers to all these questions in the Home Sweet Home section and Virtual Tour of the Families display panels in the online exhibition John Curtin's Legacy: Leading Australia from war to peace.

When you have completed the activity, you can check your answers using the online Answer Key.

1. What problem had developed in housing during the years of World War Two? Why had this occurred?

2. What organisation did the Federal Government set up to deal with the housing problem?

3. Who was eligible for money from the Federal Government to build a home under the War Service Home Scheme?

4. What were the two purchase options available to home owners under this scheme?

5. Name some of the Perth suburbs where new estates were established as a direct result of the Federal funding available for housing.

6. Give three reasons why house designs were so simple in the immediate post-war years.

7. Study this photograph from the Virtual Tour of the Families display showing a new suburb under construction in the post-war years. (You can click on the photo to see a larger image.)

a. What can you see in the background of the photo?

b. What does this tell you about the location of the new suburb?

c. Describe what the developers have done to prepare the suburb for housing construction.

d. How would you describe the size of the houses?

Houses under construction in the Perth suburb of Hilton.
Houses under construction in thePerth suburb of Hilton. Courtesy Fremantle City Library Local History Collection [#2759]

e. What materials have been used in the construction of the houses?

  • roofs
  • walls
  • fences
  • foundations

f. How are the houses positioned on their blocks?

g. The houses are missing a feature which was usual in pre-war houses and which would have been desirable in both sunny and wet weather. What is it?

h. Homes today nearly always include another feature which is missing from these post war houses. What is it?

i. The photo shows that the suburb was supplied with at least one service. What is it and how does the photograph reveal this?

j. What evidence is there that this was a newly created suburb?

For further information about housing in Perth in the post-war period visit A house in the suburbs in the online resource War and Peace: Rationing and Rebuilding: 1940s life in Cottesloe, Western Australia.

Check how you went by comparing your answers with our Answer Key. l Online Activities Home Page