The class celing
Written by Joan Bakewell | First Published 18 February 2016
The transformation of housing from a home to a commodity has become a deranged obsession, says Joan Bakewell.
I remember a world before people became obsessed with property. As a youngster, I was taken to the homes of both sets of grandparents -one a terrace house in Gorton, Manchester, the other a terrace house in Salford.
Both were small, dark and comfortable and had outside lavatories. The houses were rented and the money collected weekly by a rent collector who came round on his bike.
Everyone was conscious of the local pecking order. My mother was suspicious of boyfriends from homes where the front room opened on to the street, and delighted by boyfriends who lived in detached houses -subtle differences that had more to do with class than real estate.
We had no sense of ownership because we rented. When we moved, it was from one rented house to another. Not until I was 18 and away at university were my parents able to afford their own home. And it was detached.
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