When I was a child in the late 1960’s, most of the kids I grew up with lived in houses. Whether that be a private house, a rented house, a council house, they were always places where there seemed to be lots of space. We kids were told to play either in the bedroom, or the dining room, or in the garden of whoever’s house we were in. We would go to each others houses to play, after school.
There was always somewhere we could play away from the adults. The only time we would hear them was when they were calling us to eat, to make less noise, or to go home. The houses we lived in were representative of the era in which we lived. Property was also affordable during this period. Houses were built with families in mind, and families needed space. Space for the parents, space for the children, space to entertain, space for privacy.Gardens, garages, semi, and detached houses gave us more space as well as a certain amount of privacy from our neighbours.
As I have grown older and visited many cities and towns, not only in The UK, but in many other countries, I have seen a changing trend in the way people live. As land and property have become more and more expensive, the space occupied by people has diminished. Apartments, flats, studios, apartelles, condominiums, even garages have become the norm. People are being forced into smaller and smaller spaces. The construction industry now places more focus on huge buildings, by either converting them or constructing new high rise blocks containing a multitude of living spaces. These complexes which house several hundreds of apartments are now being marketed as ‘community living’ spaces. Another issue is that although the space is becoming smaller, the prices are increasing at a phenomenal rate.
A very good example of this push towards minimalist living is a program named:
http://www.fyi.tv/shows/tiny-house-nation Tiny house nation is a program which focuses on reducing the living space families need. The program itself is not so much the issue as much as the idea of us being made to believe that we will be just as happy living in ‘rabbit hutches’ (a slang term often used to describe small spaces), as we would be living in larger spaces. It seems as though at some point in the future the average family may be living in a single room with all sleeping, cooking, and living facilities intermingled together because this is all they will be able to afford. For those of us who remember an era gone by, that time is already here.