Mark Clapson, Professor of Social and Urban History at the University of Westminster, was interviewed on the BBC Radio 4 ‘Thinking Allowed’ programme about how suburbia has changed over time.

Professor Clapson talked about how suburbia emerged in the UK and what is attractive about it. To him, suburbia is mostly a residential area, beyond the town city centre where commuting and semidetached houses are the way of life.

Professor Clapson described suburbia’s attraction partly as an “escape from the city problems but also about wanting a house with a garden, which can reflect your individuality, your status, your class, and possibly your ethnic group”. 

Having done extensive research that challenges negative views on suburbia, he said: “the suburban aspiration is about living the best of both worlds: having a garden and being near the city centre. There is still quite a lot of community life and liveliness in suburbia.”

He concluded highlighting the increasing diversity in suburbia and how its aspiration is still “alive and kicking”.

Listen to the full interview from 01:30 on BBC iPlayer.

Press and media enquiries

Contact us on:

[email protected]