Film ID:
YFA 5858



Visitor Tabs


This is the first of a series of four themed programmes made by Yorkshire Television that aired in 1987 about life on the Manor Estate of council housing in Sheffield, consisting of events on the Estate and interviews with, mostly unidentified, residents. This one focuses on interviews with residents about living on the Estate. It relates how the residents feel about living on the Estate, the rundown conditions and poor housing, the changes, or lack of, that the Estate has seen, and the unemployment and demoralisation of those living there.  It was first transmitted on 3rd August, 1987.

The film begins with children playing on the streets of the Manor Estate, while behind them houses are being knocked down on Fitzhubert Road.  There is an interview with Mrs Evelyn Davies in her kitchen, who states that much has changed in the area.  Then there is an interview with another resident, Barry Pennington, who is leafing through some archive copies of The Manor and Woodthorpe Review from 1934.  This is followed by archive footage of the Ministry of Information film of 1942, New Towns for Old, featuring two men discussing the poor housing conditions in Sheffield at that time and showing children playing on the streets.  This is accompanied with footage of the streets in the Manor Estate and showing children playing on the streets in the present time.  Barry Pennington talks about the lack of change on the Estate over the previous sixty years, still lacking basic facilities.

Another resident is interviewed, Betty Houlden, a tenant representative, who says that she used to live on a terraced street with back-to-back housing in Attercliffe before moving to the Manor.  This is accompanied by archive film of similar terraced streets.  This is followed by an interview with Tom Ismay, who says that when he first moved into the area many years before one of the tenants asked him, “do you neighbour?”, to which he replied in the negative. Evelyn Davies says that she moved there in 1930 and that she still likes living in the area, again with accompanying archive film.  Betty Houlden provides some anecdotes of her time on the Estate and Tom Ismay and his daughter, Ann Matthews holding a child, talk about living on the Estate and how it used to be.  Barry Pennington describes the Estate as a “prison of poverty”.

Three local working men talk about the undeserved bad image that the Estate has, and that people passing through never stop to talk to anyone. Betty Houlden says that although it might not seem it, people on the Estate are caring.  Evelyn Davies explains that her house has been flooded as we see evidence of bad damp in the house, and that she is still waiting to hear about being moved.  Ann Matthews and her friend are on a bus on their way to the Wednesday Market, which she explains has been nicknamed the “the unemployed market”, which she speculates might be because it is all second-hand goods.  Together they look at some shoes on one of the stalls, with Park Street flats seen in the distance.  

A woman comes out of Hagues fish and chip shop on Fairleigh, and we see more people shopping as we hear an account by Ann Matthews of what it is like being unemployed, where people “just exist”.  It is stated that 60% of the residents are living at or below the poverty line.  Ann Matthews says that the Manor consists of cliques, and a new person can find themselves outside of these.  As we see new houses being built it is explained that 1,582 houses have been demolished and replaced by 500 new houses.  Evelyn Davies walks over to the house of Betty Houlden where they discuss her problems with being re-housed.  Ann Matthews and her husband, Mick, interviewed in their house, say how the area has lost its closed community.   Evelyn Davies shows the poor conditions of her house.   Ann Matthews says that she got fed up doing nothing and joined the tenants association, become a school governor and got involved in other local activities, and that this has given her greater confidence, something she feels is lacking on the Estate.  Betty Houlden also talks about people becoming demoralised and isolated.  Barry Pennington says that this is how he felt but now believes that things can be changed if enough people get together.  The three workmen talk about how people on the Estate are genuine and how they wouldn’t want to leave, and Tom Ismay and Evelyn Davies express similar sentiments.  The film returns to a clip from New Towns for Old before it ends.

Music – Stephanie Nunn
Graphics – Jim Slade
Associate Producer – Michael Burke
Research – Gary Horne
Production Assistant – Sue Hamelman
Sound Recordist – Chris Clarkson 
Dubbing Editor – Alan Briggs
Dubbing mixer – Steve Haynes
Camera – Alan Wilson
Film Editor – Barry Spink
Executive Producer – John Willis
Director/Producer - Peter Gordon
YTV 1987