Tarran Mark 4 (IV) Temporary Bungalow

Tarran Mark 4 (IV) Temporary Bungalow 1

The Tarran Mark 4 Temporary Bungalow

Tarran Mark 4 (IV) Temporary Bungalow 2

Manufacturer: Tarran Industries Ltd
Alternative names: Prefab, Tarran Tarran Mark IV
Designer: R Tarran
Years built:1944–56
Exact Number built: Not known but thousands were constructed.

Side Note: In 1946 Glasgow, 315 Tarran units were built at various locations
In other parts of Scotland; 273 Tarran units were built at Cumbernauld &. Kilsyth, Dumbarton, Falkirk, Kirkcaldy, North East Fife, Stirling. ( However some conflicting reports state the total number of Tarran bungalows built in Scotland was around 400)

The ‘Tarran Mark 4’ prefabricated bungalows were constructed following the 1944 Housing (Temporary Accommodation) Act.
Built by Tarran Industries Ltd of Hull, the bungalows are simple 2 bedroom buildings, faced with concrete panels.
Between 1944 and 1949 150,000 temporary bungalows were built throughout England, Scotland and Wales. The bungalows
were designed to last 10-15 years; however, many have survived far longer than expected.
In recent decades local authorities have sought to upgrade and replace prefab bungalows estates with what is deemed to be, more suitable housing of a higher standard. This has resulted in the number of prefab estates in the United Kingdom diminishing. The majority of surviving Tarran bungalows are located in the north of England, close to the site of their production.

The survival rate of the temporary prefab almost always depends on how well the property is maintained and the location of the site. The vast majority of these prefabricated dwellings have since been demolished and replaced by new permanent housing schemes.
Some of the better examples of the Tarran Bungalow still remain in use today and many have been refurbished and insulated using modern forms of External Insulation. Many have been overclad with a brick skin or a modern smooth render which is applied on top of the external insulation panels.

Fortunately, despite recent mass demolition, many homes have been saved from the bulldozer by ambitious renovation projects, undertaken by some local authorities and housing associations across the country.
One such example is Rykneld homes who recently completed a regeneration project on a number of Tarran bungalows in Eckington and Killamarsh.

Rectangular in form Tarran bungalows were placed onto brick foundations. The front elevation has two large window openings flanking an off centre main entrance. To the rear there of the buildings there are four window openings of varying size and a secondary entrance. One side elevation has two window openings.
The bungalows are faced with vertical unpainted concrete panels which have pebble-dash detailing. The gable ends feature wood cladding which is a typical feature of the these bungalows. The original roof covering was corrugated asbestos sheeting panels. All bungalows had a central metal chimney flue however due to concerns relating to cracking of the flue through excess heat, many were later altered with a replacement flue.

Identification Characteristics:

  • Detached bungalows.
  • Shallow pitch gable roof covered with profiled asbestos cement sheets.
  • External walls of storey height aggregate-faced PRC panels throughout.
  • Metal cowl to chimney.
  • The overall size of the houses 9.8 m x 6.5 m.


On traditional underbuilding the superstructure consisted of large pre-cast concrete panels fitted between regularly spaced concrete posts.
The external walls were formed of dished precast concrete panels of storey height and 405 mm wide, aggregate faced on the outside.
A timber spine was fixed in the joint between the panels, to which the lining and insulation were secured . Internal lining
was of plasterboard backed with glass quilting insulation.
The flooring consisted of prefabricated timber-framed panels with tongue-and-groove boarding on a brick underbuilding.
Ceilings; Plasterboard finish.
Roof; Light steel trusses with timber framing and finished with asbestos cement sheeting.
Internal partitions were of timber frames faced with plasterboard

The Prefab Museum have created an interactive map that lists a variety of prefabricated dwellings in the UK, both current and demolished including Tarran Bungalows. The map has been embedded below for your convenience but please pay a visit to the Prefab Museum Website which holds a treasure trove of further information.