Lewes Forum thread

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Lewes posh? Really?

On 4 Jan 2016 at 3:34pm Darren wrote:
People keep describing this little village as posh, where do they get that from? What's posh about it? Waitrose?
On 4 Jan 2016 at 4:01pm Resident wrote:
It's a town dear, not a village. I don't know what would classify any place as 'Posh'. What does that even mean? It's a small town with a mostly middle class population. It benefits from a bit of history which helps tourism and a railway station with good links to London which encourages people earning above average income to live here. It's slowly losing its working class roots as people are priced out of the town.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 4:12pm Earl of Lewes wrote:
@Darren A quick visit to Newhaven, Burgess Hill or Polegate might give you a sense of perspective. If the local house prices keep going up, I'm going to sell my terraced broom cupboard to some mug in Stoke Newington and move somewhere with a garden (and have some change left over). Lewes is lovely, but I can still visit.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 4:34pm andreas wrote:
If you live in Hastings then Lewes is posh. If you live in say Mayfair, London then it's not.
When someone has an opinion like this, i immediately think its saying more about themselves than it does about Lewes. You could also say when some says "DFL" - it says more about themselves and so on..... yawn.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 4:42pm bastian wrote:
yeah! it's changed beyond belief. the effect is very noticable now-kind of uncomfortable-makes me want to dig my heals in like a thorn in the side of the posh people to annoy them.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 4:55pm it's your fault wrote:
andreas. It's your heels, bastian. Kind Regards.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 5:36pm New Year wrote:
Perhaps Lewes is just over priced......whether that makes it 'posh', I wouldnt know as I live outside of the town in a village, where house prices are more reasonable and the schools are 'outstanding', and parking is free!
On 4 Jan 2016 at 7:37pm resolution wrote:
I resolve to pun no more on the forum, andreas fault is my last ditch.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 7:43pm sarah wrote:
I used to live in Tilbury and now I live in Newhaven and now I'm posh
On 4 Jan 2016 at 8:02pm Belladonna wrote:
Mixed metaphors Bastian.
On 4 Jan 2016 at 8:57pm Woody wrote:
When I was here in the 80's and 90's, Lewes was like the Wild West - without the Sheriff.
On Friday/Saturday nights, the pubs were full of criminals, characters and extreme casual violence was common-place during and after drinking hours. Valuable life lessons were learnt by many of the town's youth.
Compare and contrast to today - I think the 'posh' rating may have gone up a few notches since then.
On 5 Jan 2016 at 6:04am Demog wrote:
There are noticeably more well to do folk here than 15 years ago. People leave London when they want their children to be educated in less vibrant schools. Also, well to do retirees buy up little terrace houses and keep a flat in London. The majority of these people don't see themselves as posh as they are often public sector managers/ executives and teachers/ lecturers or intellectuals.
Bankers tend to live in the surrounding Villages .
On 5 Jan 2016 at 8:12am Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
Yes, I think more affluent, rather than posher, is more like it.
Rising house prices has meant that only the well-off can now afford to live here. Someone doing the same job as I was when I moved 25 years ago has no chance of buying here now.
That's reflected in the kind of shops we have in town: no greengrocers but loads of places you can buy expensive scented candles and retro household items.
On 5 Jan 2016 at 10:34am Sheepy Downs wrote:
I wouldn't usually write on here but I often look and think just how nasty people can be talking to each other from the same town, it's so shocking.
I want to say I think it's just about having a bit of understanding. Everyone is free to move where they want, to look to get more for their money and the lifestyle they want, but if we move to new places we need to have some awareness and compassion for the people who are imbedded in the landscape and history of a place. My family has lived and worked here for six generations, and now I need a home and have no way of affording to live in the place that I feel most connected to, deeply in my memory and heart, my home. Those from fast-paced places maybe have a different, more confident sense about them than some country town people, and so I guess we can feel some resentment for people who come in with buying power and a sense of possibility and ownership that is different to the embedded one we feel. I agree that the down to earth high street has gone really, I remember good times in the greengrocers etc but everything changes. We should be happy, new people are enjoying this lovely dip in the downs as much as we do, but it does have a deeper effect.
Ultimately I think it's about having an understanding of how our actions effect other people, whether we have been here sixty years or five minutes, listening to what everybody needs and wants from the town. Sometimes needs are different from wants and I guess that may be a distinction here. Money affords some people what they would like-to live in a nice town, nice house -raising the house prices and in turn denies others their needs. I can't afford to to live in the same community as my family and bring up children with them just down the road now, they way that for my mum and her mother was just a given, and that is quite sad. It is the same for my siblings and aunties and uncles, and I wonder how many other people. So yes I guess it is getting a bit 'posh' -there are a lot of shops I can't afford anything in, but that's overlooking the point I think, of how everyone is affected by the changes in the town- whatever situation you find yourself in. Considering there is a clear divide between people in the town, how can we listen to everyone with kindness instead of resentment, judgement or fear?
On 5 Jan 2016 at 10:45am Relly wrote:
Sheep, lovely post, thank you! And sorry you can't afford to live here now.
On 5 Jan 2016 at 11:15am T wrote:
The days of sleepy sussex are over. We live in an extremely competitive society where we are in need of continuous education in order to keep up with those around us. It is unfortunate that many people don't take the time to make themselves worth more. There really is no excuse. As little as 30mins study a day is the equivalent of 4-5 weeks of solid work over a year. You can learn a lot of skills in that time and usefully solve problems for people who will pay you. Sympathy for those with genuine learning difficulties is obvious but for the rest of us the fatal flaw is complacency and dare I raise the L word.
Look forward to all the excuses.
On 5 Jan 2016 at 1:49pm Observer wrote:
That's a very thought-provoking and moving post, but I do think people are shooting at the wrong targets.
There are very few places where young people can afford to buy their own home in this country based on salaries alone. Most need to have help from their parents. Lewes is not some sort of exception – admittedly it is more expensive than most places – but the problems you’re talking about are there all over the country.
The reason is that we simply do not build enough homes to cater for the population. Of course there is immigration, but the main reason is the fact that people are living longer in smaller groups. But ultimately the shortage of housing means that the sort of people who, 10 or 20 years ago, might have bought a house on, say, Grange Road or King Edward’s Road, are now buying in the Nevill or Malling. The sort of people who would have lived in those areas now have to look to Seaford or Uckfield. I think it’s sad, but not as sad as someone who is being shunted around from B&B to B&B because they are genuinely homeless. But what we need are more homes – lots of them.
I find it very difficult to accept that so-called “DFLs” are responsible for changes in Lewes – changes that have happened everywhere.
Greengrocers have vanished from most High Streets, Lewes is not some sort of curious exception. If anything, incomers (who tend to be the sort of Guardian-reading liberals who like shopping in local shops and so on) are more likely to use these places than poorer locals, who in my experience are probably more inclined to go to Aldi or Tesco. The real culprit is changing shopping patterns. Also, remember Lewes caters to a much larger area of Sussex, where there are an awful lot of 4x4-driving coiffured blonde women who may be the real customer base of all those twee shops you’re complaining about – not that couple from hackney with the baby who bought the house next to you in the Nevill.
The main reason, though, why I don’t believe these changes are due to DFLs is simple. There are not enough housing sales each year to really change the make-up of Lewes. In fact, a huge proportion of Lewes’ housing stock is occupied by older couples (50+) and pensioners. You can see that as you walk through Lewes on a Saturday or Sunday – yes, there are a few families, but the amount of grey hair is incredible! As we’re all living longer, there are simply far more of these age groups around and as they are living longer they are not selling their houses. Consequently the number of houses coming onto the market has dried up (and we’re not building many new ones), meaning that they’re expensive and affordable only by the affluent.
You don’t see this as much as they are not obvious – far easier to blame the handful of DFLs who moved into the streets near you over the past few years.

On 5 Jan 2016 at 1:57pm Observer wrote:
Anyway, going back to the original question, it's easy to answer by looking at the 2011 census, which shows the % of people living in different social grades in the BN7 postcode (based on occupation):
AB (Higher & intermediate managerial, administrative, professional occupations) – 41%, compared to 22% of the UK overall
C1 (Supervisory, clerical & junior managerial, administrative, professional occupations) – 33%, compared to 31% of the UK overall
C2 (skilled manual occupations) – 13%, compared to 21% in the UK overall
DE (semi-skilled & unskilled manual, unemployed and low grade occupations) – 13%, compared to 26% in the UK overall
On 5 Jan 2016 at 2:47pm xplorer1 wrote:
Some excellent, considered and researched posts here, especially Sheepy Downs and Observers. They demonstrate that he best way to kill the trolling is with fact and reason.
On 5 Jan 2016 at 11:01pm Mary wrote:
Agree. Some good posts here. I grew up in Gundreda Road which was considered 'posh' at the time by some people, but I'd say it was never as posh as the big old houses in Lewes such as Keere Street, Southover etc. because I bought in Brighton when I was young, it was cheaper at the time than renting, I could afford to buy in Lewes, but not in the centre of town. Nearly every house I looked at was being used for letting, usually with London-based landlords. Even if the house was in my price range I was overtaken by cash buyers, usually landlords or weekenders. It's this that I object to, and I think forces house prices and rent up due to lack of available housing. But this won't change while the London housing bubble continues and multiple home ownership is allowed to continue. Does this make Lewes posh? Not really, just a good place with those with money to invest. What I see as 'posh' hadn't changed much over the years, it tends to be those who live in the countryside and send their kids to public schools. Lewes has the left-wing and liberal posh who are often London-linked, and I think some have moved to Lewes as they can't get too far in the London market, or simply get more for their money here. This has been a change in the last twenty or so years with formerly working class streets being gentrified and priced out of the reach of those on local incomes.
On 6 Jan 2016 at 7:31pm belladonna wrote:
thank you sheep downs and observer for your posts. really valuable contirbutions and exactly the sort of debate that shoudl be happening on here

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