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The webmaster, Pat Cryer, as a young child

The early 1940s kitchen:
plan of facilities

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As explained on the 1940s house page, the most up-to-date 1940s English suburban semi-detached houses were built in the 1930s. All had the same basic plan - see below.

The estate where our family lived, however, was fortunate in that the kitchens were larger than most. They were large enough for a walk-in pantry or larder, albeit a small one and for a table.

This meant that we could eat in our kitchen. Most other families I knew on other estates had to eat in one of the other rooms which either meant heating two rooms in winter or, more likely, being cold in one of them.

Apart from the table and walk-in pantry, though, our kitchen was much like the kitchen in any other 1930s-built suburban house, which meant that it was much like that in any other suburban house in 1940s Britain.

Plan of the kitchen of a fairly typical 1940s English suburban house

Plan of the kitchen of a fairly typical 1940s suburban house, based on recollections of 9 Brook Avenue, Edgware. Many similar suburban houses had smaller kitchens with a cupboard instead of a walk-in pantry/larder and no space for a table.

See the 1940s house for how this kitchen plan fits into the plan of the other rooms on the ground floor of the house.

The kitchen was a pleasant place to be because it was light and warm. It was light because the walls and window sills were tiled with white shiny tiles, like in the bathroom - the fashion at the time - and it was warm because of the coal-fired boiler which was on in all but the most excessive of heat waves to provide hot water. The floor, like the bathroom was black and white tiles.

If you can add anything to this page, I would be pleased to hear from you.

Pat Cryer

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