TWO OF Wanstead and Woodford's most desirable neighbourhoods have been showcased as a great examples of suburbia by a conservation group.

The Monkhams estate in Woodford Green and the Aldersbrook Estate in Wanstead have been included in a new report called 'Rediscovered Utopias – Saving London's Suburbs', which explores the period 'planned' suburbs of the capital.

The report was produced by Save Britain's Heritage and draws attention to the threats suburbs face from some residents and developers who change period details such as windows, doors, and fences.

According to the report, these changes not only damage the “artistic integrity” of the buildings but also undermine the strength of the community and quality of life.

The Monkhams estate, which was mostly built between 1919 and 1939, is described in the report as “an excellent example of a high-class, Edwardian and inter-war speculatively built suburban estate”.

Meanwhile, the Aldersbrook neighbourhood, which was designated a conservation area by Redbridge Council in 2002, is held up as a perfect example of the trend for “planned Edwardian middle-class suburbs on the edge of a metropolis”, in which the “wide variety of houses on the estate prevents monotony”.

Colin Rainbow, 70, is the vice-chairman of the Woodford Green Amenity Group and lives in Kings Avenue in the heart of the Monkhams estate.

He said: “It's in a good location because it's close to the Tube and the shops on the Broadway, and we have lovely neighbours.

“People haven't ripped out the old windows and put in nasty new ones or anything like that.

“The other thing is the houses were very well built. We've just had out painted and the decorator said to us that the wood is every bit as good as it was when it was put in 102 years ago.”

Ray Spurs, 78, who lives in Woodlands Avenue in Aldersbrook, explained why he had enjoyed living in the area since 1968 and said that residents were watchful for developers trying to make unsuitable alterations.

He said: “It's lovely because it's like living in the countryside and you're only nine miles from central London. And within minutes you're on a road that will take you anywhere in the country.

“On the whole, I think people really take pride in their homes and maintain the character of the area.

“One or two things have came up where these jokers have tried to change something. But people around here are quite hot on stopping that sort of thing.”