Gentrification and Labour

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Monday 2 October 2017 1.51pm
John C wrote:
Jules62 wrote:
MarcoC wrote:
... assuming gentrification is a bad thing ...

Gentrification is not a bad thing per se: influxes of people from an under-represented demographics is good, since it adds to the richness and diversity of an area.

This cuts both ways: be it highly educated wealthy professionals moving into Peckham, or working class people, immigrants, etc moving into Belgravia.

But if it involves uprooting and displacing existing communities in order to achieve a new socio-economic identity for an area, then it is indeed a bad thing.

Surely what's going on in north Southwark now isn't 'gentrification'? As originally applied to areas like Islington it meant 'middle-class' incomers taking over run-down 19th-century terrace houses and tarting them up - and creating a new community. Local estate agents profited and encouraged it, but there was, as far as I know, no deliberate town-planner or developer involvement fuelled by massive investment - it was largely a 'natural' social process, matched as the up-and-coming working classes were moving out of the overcrowded central areas into the leafy suburbs!

Whether it's a 'good thing' or a 'bad thing' I don't know (and wouldn't care to express an opinion), but 'gentrification' in Southwark has given us places like Mercato Metropolitano, Flat-Iron Square, the Southwark Playhouse and (dare one suggest) topics on this Forum like where to get the best sushi in S London.

Turning north Southwark into Dubai-on-Thames isn't gentrification - and the people moving in certainly aren't gentry.

It has, it's also taken quite a bit away from the local population.
Monday 2 October 2017 2.32pm
I think gentrification, no matter how you define it, set a process in motion that now includes new student accommodation, unaffordable housing, hotels, inundation of Sainsbury's and Tesco's aimed mainly at workers etc. I welcome some of the aspects, but I would prefer some balance.
Monday 2 October 2017 3.58pm
eDWaRD WooDWaRD wrote:
I think gentrification, no matter how you define it, set a process in motion that now includes new student accommodation, unaffordable housing, hotels, inundation of Sainsbury's and Tesco's aimed mainly at workers etc. I welcome some of the aspects, but I would prefer some balance.
(my emphasis)
That's not gentrification. Look at the properly gentrified places like Notting Hill, Kensington and Hampstead - they aren't full of shops like that aimed at local workers. Neither are there loads of student accommodation. Nor do they have to put up with the amount of begging and low-level anti-social behaviour we get.

Gentrification would mean Waitrose and organic deli's, and charming little shops selling trinkets to people with huge pushchairs. It would be somewhere you could imagine Richard Curtis setting a film. Other than Greensmiths, and a couple of other places on Lower Marsh, there's precious little sign of gentrification around Waterloo. We can't even sustain a farmers' market.

What we've got is a major transformation of the neighbourhood from a pleasant, mixed economy with a fairly stable community to a tourist and services-industry based commercial neighbourhood with a transient residential population and huge numbers of day visitors and people passing through. Local shops and other services are being transformed to service these people rather than people who are here for the long-term.

In this, it more closely resembles how Soho changed in the late 20th century than Islington. It's a transformation of sorts, but I don't think it's gentrification.
Monday 2 October 2017 4.15pm
Karen I wrote:
Jules62: Because 'the natives' of Peckham are all poor and thick? So offensive.

No offense was intended: I merely mentioned Peckham and Belgravia because of their very different demographics.

Peckham:

Peckham residents educated to degree level: 29.37%

The top occupations listed by people in Peckham are:

Elementary, and Elementary administration and service: 36.5% (Elementary trades are defines as "occupations which require the knowledge and experience necessary to perform mostly routine tasks, often involving the use of simple hand-held tools and, in some cases, requiring a degree of physical effort.
Most occupations in this major group do not require formal educational qualifications but will usually have an associated short period of formal experience-related training
).

Professional: 16.3%
Caring, leisure and other service: 13.0%
Associate professional and technical: 12.1%
Administrative and secretarial: 10.6%
Sales and customer service: 9.8%
Caring personal service: 9.0%
Skilled trades: 8.6%
Administrative: 7.9%.

Knightsbridge And Belgravia:

Belgravia residents educated to degree level: 46.06%

Managers, directors and senior officials: 32.0%
Corporate managers and directors: 24.3%
Associate professional and technical: 23.2%
Professional: 18.7%
Business and public service associate professionals: 14.6%
Business, media and public service professionals: 11.5%
Business, Finance and Related Associate Professionals: 9.4%
Other managers and proprietors: 7.6%
Functional Managers and Directors: 7.6%
Caring, leisure and other service: 7.4%.

I never stated that the residents of Peckham are all poor and thick, though it is undeniable that, judging from the figures given above, they enjoy a lower standard of living than residents in Belgravia...
Monday 2 October 2017 4.30pm
[quote Rambling Phil][quote eDWaRD WooDWaRD]
What we've got is a major transformation of the neighbourhood from a pleasant, mixed economy with a fairly stable community to a tourist and services-industry based commercial neighbourhood with a transient residential population and huge numbers of day visitors and people passing through. Local shops and other services are being transformed to service these people rather than people who are here for the long-term..[/quote]

That is a fairly accurate summary. I was wondering though if the reasons/causes behind that transformation are the same as for what we all gentrification. Same conditions, different symptoms and similar outcomes.
Saturday 7 October 2017 10.28am
Regeneration seems to mean getting shafted for working class people.

"Not for us" is the comment on the properties soaring up in the Southwark area.
So we need to be building homes that are for us then?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05j6xhh
Saturday 7 October 2017 2.11pm
JazzyQ wrote:
Regeneration seems to mean getting shafted for working class people.
"Not for us" is the comment on the properties soaring up in the Southwark area.
So we need to be building homes that are for us then?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05j6xhh

Of course it does, it always did. After the riots the other year I remember David Lammy announcing, with *gusto, that a figure (can't remember how much) had been guaranteed for the regeneration of Tottenham, I wrote to him explaining my concerns for the good people of Tottenham and that regeneration is not necessarily something that is going to benefit them, in fact, I'm sure I wrote that it will mean that the local population will be under more threat the nicer you make it.
No reply.

Not quite "Go Compare".
Saturday 7 October 2017 2.48pm
Rambling Phil wrote:
What we've got is a major transformation of the neighbourhood from a pleasant, mixed economy with a fairly stable community to a tourist and services-industry based commercial neighbourhood with a transient residential population and huge numbers of day visitors and people passing through. Local shops and other services are being transformed to service these people rather than people who are here for the long-term.

In this, it more closely resembles how Soho changed in the late 20th century than Islington. It's a transformation of sorts, but I don't think it's gentrification.

This is a very shrewd analysis. I shall be quoting you to anyone who'll listen next time this subject comes up
Saturday 7 October 2017 3.08pm
Makes me laugh, there was a major transformation that paved the way for half of you lot to live here. It's a monster that aint stropping.
Sunday 8 October 2017 10.00am
boroughonian wrote:
Makes me laugh, there was a major transformation that paved the way for half of you lot to live here. It's a monster that aint stropping.

In my case, it was the gentrification of Islington that priced me out of an area my family had lived in for at least four generations. Luckily, the good people of the South Bank took this refugee in and made him feel welcome.
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