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Status Symbols of the British Upper Middle Class watch


    The class subject is a pretty big field. But maybe property, royal links and values etc.
    • Thread Starter

    (Original post by Clip)
    For women:

    Bugaboo cameleon (sic) pushchair, Classic Mulberry handbag, Jo Malone candles, Molton Brown room spray, Paula Pryke flowers, Landrover Discovery 4, crystalised sugar on a stick (instead of lumps or granulated), Cowshed soap, Miller Harris Tea and perfume, afternoon tea at the Palm Court at the Langham.

    For men:

    Depends what matters to them. Some will get cars, some will go shooting, some will go on holiday, some will get Savile Row jackets and Emma Willis shirts, some will have trophy wives that buy the things above.
    Excellent reply! Thanks.
    • Thread Starter

    (Original post by Timon)
    Yes, I'm well aware of that. However, many sociologists are leaning to the idea that Britain's middle class are dividing, and it is not necessarily along the lines of occupational prestige and educational background. In other words, the British class system is becoming more 'American'.

    For instance, let's take the role of a lecturer of history at a Russell Group university. Very impressive, very prestigious. Now, until about 20-30 years ago, the vast amount of people who held such a position, while not earning high salaries themselves, came from moneyed backgrounds that would easily let them enjoy the prestige and lifestyle of any other middle-class profession or even upper class gentleman or lady. The same could be said of vicars and military officers. There salaries were and are today stil relatively low, but their status in society is high.

    However, such professions have since become more democratised, and the middle and upper classes no longer dominate them. Working class kids who were educated at grammar schools often joined their ranks, and they stand out from the old guard.

    Now, along with this came a super escalation in salaries, bonuses and compensation amongst people who work in the financial sector in the City. Their salaries put them way above most surgeons, lawyers, judges, academics, top level civil servants, etc. Because of their wealth, their lifestyles were clearly not middle class anymore, yet they still eschewed middle class values. This was a different phenomenon than the old rags to riches new money type of thing. It made the old British class system seem irrelevant, particularly when you see the working-class eroding into a working poor and a few lucky ones climbing up to the lower middle-class.

    Thus, the term middle-class has become just as meaningless as working-class. Income now has to play a larger role than it did before when determining class. And the concept of what we once called middle class also had to be reconstructed to signify those with money--a lot of money--but not titled or aristocratic, and those with postgraduate degrees in the professions.
    So yes, there is an 'upper middle class' in Britain today, as there is a 'lower middle-class'. Even the upper middle-class are not some monolithic group. You have the conservative, exurban living managerial/entrepranuerial/business owning subgroup on one side, and the more liberal, urban dwelling and highly educated professionals working in law, medicine, academia, etc., within the upper middle-class. They both have two very different outlooks on the world and live vastly different lifestyles. And within the lower middle class you have a whole myraid of seperate sub-divisions.

    Hmm.. not fun seeing consistent definitions which describe my family well, along with the prejudice. Although my case is one where you'd be too quick to judge; my family started out (ie, my parents were before they married) very much working class. After they got married, they worked very hard and eventually started their own business. My father was a very clever man, who invented and built the original machines they used. I know he never had any higher education, but he did learn an awful lot about engineering somehow. Now nearly all the family work for it (I have 3 brothers and 3 sisters) along with some other people, and now my mother basically does nothing but signs a couple of things every month, and my fathers not involved in it anymore because he died.

    Either way, my family may drive lexus and jaguar cars, and go on cruises twice a year, but it was all a result of their own work. Class isn't the same as it used to be; its apparent that you can definitely get to where you want to be if you work at it.

    Range Rover.

    -A 4+ bedroom detached house in Surrey, Berks, Bucks, Hants or West Sussex

    -2 vehicles, one being a Range Rover and the other a BMW, Audi, Mercedes or a Jaguar

    -Children attend private fee-paying schools. Extra points if those schools are single-sex, Church of England (..or Roman Catholic) in ethos. Top of the pops if they're boarding schools.

    -Holiday home in Provence, Tuscany or Florida (Time shares in Spain are for Plebs!).

    -Double-barreled surname

    -Children have names like: Arabella, Harriet, Georgina, Phillipa, Sebastian, Jeremy, Timon, Pierce, Giles.

    -Club memberships - eg, golf club, gentlemens' clubs, as well as polo, rugby, tennis or yachting clubs

    -Own at least one Savile Row bespoke suit.

    -Some measure of wealth, prestige and power in family line for at least 4 or 5 generations. Doesn't have to be serious money, just some measure of independence and affluence.

    -Attended Oxbridge or one of about a dozen Russell Group universities in England, Scotland, Wales. Trinity in Dublin for the very posh.

    -Ability to speak at least some French.

    -Familiarity with wine, sailing, tennis, cricket, equestrian events and golf.

    -Daughters have equestrian training

    -Children have had elocution lessons

    -You speak some measure of RP English

    -You live in the South East or London itself

    -You think of anywhere north of the Watford Gap as odd and almost foreign.

    -At university you read one of the humanities. You think STEM subjects are for aspirational plebs.

    -You are engaged in one of the high professions (medicine, law, academia, architecture, arts) or you are a high level manager in the military or civil service. You may also own a large business outright.

    -You have invested large amounts of money in shares, property, etc.

    -You vote Tory. Your entire family and friends have always voted Tory....although there is that one branch who were lifelong Liberals. Labour is for northerners and red plebs as far as you are concerned.
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