Unhappy suburbanites?

May 5, 2008

In an article previewing his recently published book, London voices, 1957-2007: From family and kinship to London lives, Peter Hall suggests that some former East Enders have found themselves in the worst of both worlds: having wanted to move out of the city centre to find more space, but not being able to move very far out as they need to retain ties to the centre (ageing parents, work, friends and family). “For some, that compromise meant buying an interwar house in an outer London borough; for others, it resulted in life in a new estate just outside London, in Kent or Berkshire. Here, especially, people complained endlessly about the pace of physical change: the endless construction, including heavy construction traffic, the steady erosion of a sense of tranquillity, the stress and strain of the long commute to work whether by car or train, but also the need to travel for shopping or other basic local services.”

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2 Responses to “Unhappy suburbanites?”

  1. burbsblogger Says:

    Disquiet in suburbia –

    In support of the statements made by Hall, the recent London election results are reflective of the feelings of neglect felt by those living in London’s suburbs. The absence of London’s outer suburbs in the current London Plan certainly contributes to the sense of neglect the people of suburbia are feeling. An article in Sunday’s Observer notes that the idea of outer London as the “contented leafy suburb” just does not hold true anymore. There are many concerns befalling suburban London including that of traffic congestion (our profiler shows car ownership in the suburbs is higher than central London), together with issues traditionally associated with the inner city such as antisocial behaviour and crime.

  2. lizzie tanners Says:

    We all crave for a bit of quietness in our lives no matter how urbanized we seem or feel to be.


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