Fabricating Lureland

New book publication:

Through the analysis of surviving archival traces, this new book constructs a history of the imagination and memory of the town of Peacehaven. Built atop iconic chalk cliffs on the Sussex Coast and marketed as a garden city by the sea, the estate quickly attracted adverse publicity and was criticised by influential voices such as the Bloomsbury group’s Virginia and Leonard Woolf, and the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England as a speculative blot on the rolling, pastoral downland landscape. Instead of reading and appraising Peacehaven’s story in a polarized way, Fabricating Lureland breaks new ground and critically interprets early propositions and representations of the estate, that focused on improved public health and home ownership in direct response to the negative impact of industrialization and WWI.

The book concentrates on the interwar period, combining visual research methods with oral history, so that multi-layered narratives of place come into focus. The study also tracks the visual programme of the developer’s in-house magazine, Peacehaven Post, alongside previously underexplored blueprints, photographs, postcards and promotional guidebooks, and considers the garden city narrative as a form of social Utopia.

Video with Yael Breuer from Latest TV, discussing the book

Link to book on De Gruyter website

Click here to read about Julia’s community project: Lureland Peacehaven