The district of Simmering is archetypal "Red Vienna", its imposing council housing blocks, named after workers' heroes of the past, testament to almost a century of state largesse under the left.

But last year this socialist utopia became the first part of the Austrian capital to be run by the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe), the populist movement turning politics on its head and whose candidate is tipped to become president on May 22.

In last month's presidential election first round, the FPOe's Norbert Hofer came first with 35 percent of the vote nationally, and in Simmering 41.2 percent, against just 16.5 percent for Rudolf Hundstorfer of the Social Democrats (SPOe).

Read the complete original version of this item...