Croydon's 100 year history of council housing will be celebrated next week with the launch of a month-long exhibition.

The 1919 Housing Act heralded a huge building programme across the country in the decades since, with around 25,000 council homes built in the borough.

On Friday August 2, lifelong tenants, councillors and council staff will gather at the Museum of Croydon for the exhibition's opening.

One of the tenants to attend the launch will be Jean Wayman, who has lived in council houses and flats for the last 61 years across New Addington and Waddon.

The mother-of-three and former foster parent watched her current home in Layton Crescent being built 40 years ago while she previously lived in another council house opposite.

Ms Wayman, 84, said: “It has given me a home, stability and a place to bring up my children, and some people have not had this.

"I’ve always been very lucky; I’ve found we have done very well off the council and we have never had any problems.”

The exhibition will include a gallery of photographs, displays of tenants everyday objects, written case studies, and council archives.

Following the passage of the 1919 act, homes were first built in Godstone Road (1920), Woodside (1921) and Norbury (1921), with rehousing priority given to ex-servicemen, WW1 widows and the growing class of clerks, postal workers and tram conductors.

Work on the New Addington estate began in 1948, followed by the first high-rise blocks built on Lodge Lane and Violet Lane in 1957.

The launch event, from 11am to 1pm will be open to the general public, and the Clocktower exhibition will be open throughout August from 9am to 6pm and until 5pm on Saturdays.

Councillor Alison Butler, Croydon Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for homes and Gateway services, said: “This exhibition marks an important part of Croydon’s modern history, and it underlines how important social housing has been and still remains today.

“I’m pleased that many local tenants have contributed their mementoes to make this a very personal celebration of council homes in Croydon, and that afterwards some exhibits will be offered to our collections for posterity.

"I hope as many people as possible visit this exhibition over the summer holidays.”