Please tell me this article is a parody, aimed at luring bloggers into making mocking fools of themselves. The suspiciously named “Sebastian Cresswell-Turner” complains at length that his middle-class peers aren’t as rich as members of their parents’ generation and have to do shocking things like live in Battersea or send their children to state schools.
When I was a boy, almost everyone we knew lived in a large house in the country or in the better parts of London. I am not claiming for a moment that we were especially grand—just perfectly well-off. But back then Battersea and Clapham were entirely off our radar, Stockwell another country, and Brixton, Peckham and Streatham simply unheard of. Now, with a few exceptions among those who are notably rich or successful, the next generation of the same families I grew up with is living in just these areas.
Then take private education. The number of people in my parents’ circle who sent their children to state schools could be counted on the fingers of one hand, and were regarded as unfortunate, odd or even subversive. A generation later, however, a considerable proportion of my friends have opted for state schools for their children, in almost all cases for financial reasons.
If this is not downward mobility on a broad scale, then what is?
I particularly enjoyed this bit:
My father, a respected country-based architect, somehow managed to put his four sons through private education. One is now a partner in a venture capital firm; another is co-founder of Lombok, a furniture retailer with a turnover of about £15m a year; another is a highly skilled Shropshire-based cabinet maker; and as for myself, the oldest son, “wordsmith” seems best to describe the translating, writing and language teaching that have occupied me in Paris, Rome and London over the past decade or so.
Perhaps Sebastian is “poor” because he’s a “wordsmith” who, despite the money spent on his education, can’t write English.