A History of the Ministry of Information, 1939-46



6.0 Introduction

This section will try to summarise, collate and compare the views of the informants and will attempt to interpret the results. Wherever possible the discussion will attempt to interpret the results in the light of report made by our field workers on their experiences. These reports dealt with the community life of the towns visited, the leisure interests of the families to whom the questionnaires were administered and their beliefs and attitudes about housing.

In addition to this information our field workers were instructed to note down on each questionnaire any comments or suggestions made under two headings - the reasons for the choice of the present dwelling and the main community interest of the person interviewed. Not all those interviewed expressed views on these topics so that the information cannot be recorded as valid for the whole sample but as indicative of some of the main lines of thought of the majority.

This summary which follows the main pattern of the report deals with the following topics:-

6.1 Getting a living - the Journey to Work

6.2 Running a Home - Shopping

6.3 The Care of Children (this refers to the Wife’s section only)

6.4 Religious Practice

6.5 Leisure and Community Interests

6.6 The future House, Garden and Community

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6.1 Getting a living - the Journey, to Work

6.1 1 Distances Travelled to Work

For this purpose journeys have been divided into two groups - medium and long journeys. Medium journeys are those up to 1¼ miles, long journeys are more than 1¼ miles. Analysis of the distance travelled shows a remarkable consistency between men and women irrespective of the groups from which they are drawn; thus 62% of the working wives had journeys up to 1¼ miles and 60% of unmarried working women had journeys of this length, whereas 50% of husbands had journeys up to 1¼ miles and 51% unmarried men, showing that in general a larger proportion of women worked near their homes than men.

Distance Travelled to Work
Wife Husband Unmarried Women Unmarried Men
% % % %
Up to 1¼ miles 62 50 60 51
Over 1¼ miles 30 43 36 43
No answer 8 7 4 6
SAMPLE: 428 1167 662 447

The division of distance into the two group of up to 1¼ miles and over 1¼ miles shows a very sharp difference when analysed into groups of those who work; of those housewives who had to travel up to 1¼ miles to work 95% considered their home convenient and 3% considered it not convenient, of the husbands 92% considered their home convenient and 5% not convenient, of the unmarried men the proportions are 92% and 5% and the unmarried women 88% and 10%.

For the distance over 1¼ miles, the proportions are strikingly different. For the housewife 58% of those who travelled this distance considered their home convenient and 36% considered it inconvenient, for the husband the proportions are 57% and 36%, for the unmarried men 59% and 37% and the unmarried women 49% and 49%

Analysis by time showed rather sharper differences between journeys of up to 22 minutes and journeys over 23 minutes, and an appreciable proportion of each group thought even journeys of the shorter duration not convenient. These were 6% of working wives, 9% of husbands and unmarried men and 14% of unmarried women. Journeys of over 23 minutes were considered inconvenient by 45% of husbands, 52% of unmarried men and 56% of unmarried women.

Relation of Work Place and Home - Analysed by Distance
Convenient Inconvenient No Answer Sample
% % % No.
Working Housewife
600 yards 1¼ miles 95 3 2 265
Over 1¼ miles 58 36 5 129
Working Husband
600 yards 1¼ miles 92 5 3 580
Over 1¼ miles 57 36 6 507
Unmarried Women
600 yards 1¼ miles 88 10 2 397
Over 1¼ miles 49 49 3 237
Unmarried Men
600 yards 1¼ miles 92 5 3 228
Over 1¼ miles 59 37 4 194

6.1 2 Time Taken to Travel to Work

There are no very important differences between the time taken by the various groups in their journeys to work when medium (up to 22 minutes) and long journeys (over 23 minutes) are compared. Thus 72% of working wives, 66% of husbands and 72% of unmarried adults had medium journeys, and 18% of working wives, 26% of husbands and 24% of unmarried adults had long journeys. For 10% of working wives, 8% of husbands and 4% of unmarried adults information was not available.

6.1 3 Cost of Transport

Half or more of all workers in our sample had no transport costs - most of these walked or cycled to work. Of the rest, most had weekly fares of either 1/-to 2/- or 2/- to 4/-. The first category accounted for 15% of working women, 11% of husbands and 15% of unmarried adults. The second category accounted for 13% of wives, 16% of husbands and 19% of unmarried adults.

6.1 4 The Effect of Town Size

Journeys were longer in the large and medium cities, than in small ones. Where the sample was sufficiently large to make a more detailed analysis possible, it was seen that distances were longest in Glasgow and medium towns, shorter in Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee and shortest of all in small towns. Time and cost were similarly affected by town size.

6.1 5 The Effect of Zone

In all cases the proportion having long journeys was largest in the outer zone of large cities, those having a journey of over l¼ miles were 60% of the working wives living in the outer zone, 53% of the husbands living in the outer zone and 54% of the unmarried adults living there. This may be compared with the proportions of those living in the inner zone with journeys of this length which were 21%, 25% and 38% respectively.

6.1 6 The Relation of the Home to the Work Place

The key problem from the planning point of view is at what distance homes are to be placed from work places or where work places are to be built in relation to new houses or communities. In order to throw some light on this, the analyses of distance and time have been re-stated into two groups - medium and long journeys - and expressed to show whether or not the person making the journey considered the relation of their home to work was convenient or not. A further analysis has been made to show the proportion of the whole sample in each of the three groups who considered it important to have their home near to their work.

Relation of Work Place and Home - Analysed by Time
Convenient Inconvenient No Answer Sample
No. % No. % No. % No.
Working Housewife
Up to 22 mins. 281 91 19 6 8 3 308
Over 23 mins. 37 37 4 78
Working Husband
Up to 22 mins. 86 9 5 773
Over 23 mins. 50 45 5 307
Unmarried Men
Up to 22 mins. 86 9 5 325
Over 23 mins. 40 52 8 104
Unmarried Women
Up to 22 mins. 83 14 3 473
Over 23 mins. 41 56 3 160

This analysis argues that the planning of new communities must provide homes within a journey of say 22 minutes of the work place if large proportions of workers are not to be inconvenienced. In this respect it is interesting to note the comments by some of those interviewed who were living on estates outside the larger cities. It was very often found that where the transport service was bad the workers were very dissatisfied with the length of the journey they had to make, but in other places where the journey was actually longer in miles but where there was an efficient transport service no dissatisfaction was felt.

Cost also is of importance in this connection and on many of the new estates with dwellings rented at about 7/6d. housewives spoke of the “second rent” which had to be paid in order for the husband to travel to work. In some cases this was almost as much as was paid for the house and, in the case of persons moved from slum clearance houses, as much as the rent which they were accustomed to pay.


6.2 Running a Home - Shopping

6.2 1 The main problem dealt with in this section is that of shopping. Journeys to shops are a part of the daily routine of the housewife and although their importance is exaggerated in war time with rationing difficulties, shopping will nevertheless remain an important concern of the housewife.

Our field workers were impressed by the importance housewives placed on their shopping difficulties. In many cases it was mentioned that new estates had been built without adequate facilities and that where shops were few, housewives complained rather bitterly of poor services owing to the lack of competition. Where estates were large and the local shopping centre was placed in the centre or to one side many housewives had a considerable distance to travel. In other cases the danger from traffic to children going on shopping errands was mentioned. This was where estates had been built across arterial roads.

6.2 2 Visits to Shopping Centres

The distance to be travelled to the local shopping centre was in the main very short, 93% of the journeys were less than 1100 yards. Journeys to the main shopping centre were, many of them, quite long, 56% being more than 1100 yards.

6.2 3 Time Taken to Visit Shopping Centres

Nine-tenths of all housewives who went to the local shopping centre had journeys of 12 minutes or less, but journeys to the main shopping centre took longer than 12 minutes for 47% of those wives who visited a main shopping centre.

6.2 4 Cost of Travelling for Shopping

9% of all housewives who went there had travelling expenses in connection with their local shopping centre and 35% in connection with their main shopping centre. Most of these expenses were small. Visits to the local shopping centre cost more than 1/- in 6% of cases and visits to the main shopping centre cost more than 1/- in 4% of cases - these are the weekly costs.

6.2 5 The Relation of the Home to the Shopping Centres

97% of all housewives who had journeys of less than 600 yards considered their local shopping centre to be convenient, 76% of those with a journey of between 600 and 1100 yards considered their home to be convenient, but where the journey were longer than this, the proportions considering their home convenient were rather less. The sample, however, was small.

A rather different pattern emerges in the case of visits to the main shopping centre. 95% of those whose main shopping centre was within 600 yards considered it convenient, as did 89% of those whose main shopping centre was within 1100 yards, and 81% of those who had a journey of between 1100 yards and 1¼ miles, but only 71% of those whose journey was longer than 1¼ miles.

The analysis of time taken is more illuminating, particularly in relation to the local shopping centre; 95% with journeys up to 12 minutes thought their home convenient to the local shopping centre, but only 57% of those with journeys longer than this. In the case of the main shopping centre journeys up to 22 minutes were considered convenient by more than 85% of housewives, whereas journeys over this time were considered convenient by only 60% of housewives.

It follows from this analysis that distance is of less importance than time and that the key to the situation is the provision of adequate transport services to take housewives on their shopping journeys or else the provision of local shopping centres within easy walking distance of the home.

6.3 The Care of Children

6.3 1 Clinics

Visits to clinics were of importance only 9% of the housewives and these were all mothers of children. Most of them considered the clinic as conveniently situated to their home.

Where the estate was of a mixed character and contained both families who had moved out in the ordinary way and families from slum clearance areas, there were complaints that the clinics were overcrowded and were often made dirty and unpleasant by the parents and children of the poorer families. This problem of “mixing” came out in relation to many other factors as well.

6.3 2 The Primary School

The primary school was of importance to about one-third of all the housewives and in the cases of three-quarters of the children the home was within 12 minutes of the school. Only 7% of children used passenger transport services to travel to school and over four-fifths of the housewives considered the school was convenient to the home.

6.3 3 The Secondary School

Secondary schools were in very many cases much further away than the primary school, and the most important fact emerging from this was that one- third of secondary school children had travelling expenses. This is an important factor in the economy of poorer families.

6.3 4 Children’s Playgrounds

About one-third of the women with children visited children’s playgrounds and most of these had to travel less than 600 yards to reach, them.

These proportions did not take account of those who were unable to visit children’s playgrounds because there were none in the locality.

6.4 Religious Practice

6.4 1 The results of the inquiry into religious practice are in many ways inconclusive. The wife was asked specific questions about her church attendance, 66 but in the questionnaire addressed to the husband and unmarried adults such questions were not asked, although in some cases the information was volunteered in reply to the question about the “Other interests”. For this reason the results from the husband, wife and unmarried adults are not strictly comparable.

The wife’s answers referred almost entirely to devotional activities, and social activities were mentioned under visits to clubs, halls or meeting places, or in some cases in a small group of other church social activities. In the case of the husband and unmarried adult it was not always possible to separate devotional activities from activities which were at least in part social.

Another difficulty is that owing to the prestige involved in church attendance it seems likely that a proportion of the wife’s answer were untruthful. This conclusion was reinforced by the large proportion (17%) who said they attended but were unable to give information about their place of worship in order that the distance could be measured on the map.

67% of the housewives in the sample attended religious service and 33% said they went seldom or never. 15% of husbands said that they went to church and church social activities and 21% of unmarried adults. These latter proportions are likely to be an understatement as the evidence obtained by comparing the replies to the questions about cinema attendance in two different surveys quoted earlier suggests.

6.4 2 Relation of the House to the Place of Worship

In this analysis the proportion of the whole sample in each case who considered it very, somewhat or not important to have a place of worship near their home is given. Of all wives 33% thought it very important that their place of worship should be near their home, 15% somewhat important and 14% not important. The remainder of the sample not being concerned with this activity were not asked the question. 9% of the unmarried adults considered it very important to have a place of worship near their home, 5% somewhat and 4% not important. The rest either did not answer the question or did not go to church. The sample of husbands was too small to make this analysis possible.

It follows that for a large proportion of wives it is important that a place of worship should be near to their home, it is less important to the unmarried adult and to the husband.

Our field workers in their discussions with those interviewed found that the social activities of religious organisations were very often mentioned, particularly Brotherhoods and Sisterhoods. Frequently on some of the new estates these were almost the only type of social activities available.

6.5 Leisure Activities

6.5 1 This summary contains information from the main body of the report illustrated by analysis of the comments made about social and community interests and some remarks made by the field workers on their discussions with those interviewed. In the first instance it should be noted that the questionnaire addressed to the wife asked about five activities with a direct question. These were - cinema, parks, clubs, sports ground and dance hall. The questionnaire addressed to the unmarried adults and to the husband inquired only about sports ground and club. It is likely, therefore, that in all cases the other interests are under-represented.

6.5 2 The Cinema

The cinema was visited by 68% of wives, by 45% of husbands and by 77% of unmarried adults. The proportion of unmarried women was 81% compared with 69% of unmarried men. This is by far the most important leisure interest and inquiries about convenience suggested that it was of somewhat less importance in the case of the cinema than in the case of some other interests.

Thus analysing the views of 68% of wives who went to the cinema it was found that 25% considered it very important to have the cinema near their home, 17% somewhat important, 21% not important and 5% were unable to express an opinion. For the husband the proportions were 18%, 8%, 16% and 3% and in the case of the unmarried adults the proportions considering it very important were 37%, somewhat important 15% and not important 18%, 7% gave no answer. The cinema thus appears to be more important to the unmarried adults than to the married. It is impossible to say how far this is a different between generations or to what extent the present views of the unmarried adults will become like those of their parents.

Somewhat less than half (45%) of all housewives made comments about their social and community interests and of these 23% were concerned with the cinema. A slightly larger proportion of husbands made comments about their social interests and of these 15% were about the cinema. A smaller proportion of unmarried men and unmarried women made comments about their social interests.16% of those of the unmarried men were concerned with the cinema and 33% of those of the women. In all cases these were the largest proportions mentioning any one interest; thus all the evidence is that the cinema is the most important outside interest judged both by the proportion who visit it and the proportion who mentioned it in discussion. Other analyses suggest that the importance of the cinema is relatively greater to the younger groups.

6.5 3 Parks

Parks were visited by 44% of the wives, but visits to parks were not mentioned by either husbands or unmarried adults although some would probably have mentioned them had a direct question been asked.

Of the of housewives who visited parks, 24% considered it very important to have them near home, 9% somewhat important and 7% not important. 4% were unable to express an opinion.

It is clear from the comments of our field workers that visits to the park did, in fact, play an important part in the lives of working women, particularly of those with children and in the warmer months. Visits to parks were also mentioned as being of importance to older people and some people who had been moved to remote estates away from public parks complained that they missed this amenity.

With visits to public parks should be considered the outdoor athletic activities of 3% of the housewives, 12% of husbands and 13% of unmarried adults. These activities comprised a large variety of different sports. Amongst the unmarried adults walking, cycling and swimming were frequently mentioned, whilst to the husband visits to bowling greens appeared to be an important leisure activity. Wives in some interviews said that watching bowls was one of the things which interested them on their visits to parks.

Comments made about social interests illustrate these points. Bowls, skating, golf, cycling, riding and tennis were all mentioned by housewives; this together with those who mentioned other outdoor activities amounted to about 8% of those making comments. Of the husbands who made comments 9% mentioned bowls, golf, 2% cycling and 11% other outdoor sports.

Outdoor activities mentioned by the unmarried men included bowls, swimming, hiking, cycling, football - these were mentioned by 13% of those making comments - tennis and other outdoor activities. This group accounted for 39% of all the comments made. Swimming, hiking, cycling, tennis and other outdoor activities were mentioned by the unmarried women and these accounted for 18%. of the comments about social activities.

In connection with these activities the Youth Hostel Movement was referred to with approval in many cases.

6.5 4 Club, Hall or Meeting Place .

This group of activities was chosen for a direct question since it had a bearing on the possible provision of community centres. The present club, hall or meeting place where such activities as lectures, dancing, whist drives and meetings of various kinds take place exists in connection with a greater number of other institutions and is similar in scope to the community centre, although as a rule the provision is far less satisfactory.

18% of wives said that they went to a club, hall or meeting place, 22% of husbands and 19% of unmarried adults, showing that such activities affected about one-fifth of the whole population.

In addition to those who gave this information a certain number mentioned other activities which are normally associated with such places. Of the wives there were 2% who visited church and church social activities, 1% indoor sports 1% lectures and educational activities, 1% whist drives and bridge and a further 1% who went to guild meetings. In the case of the husband some part of the 15% of church and church social activities should be allocated to this group and in addition 4% who went to indoor sports and 1% who went to whist or bridge drives.

Some part of the 21% of the unmarried adults who visited church and church social activities should be taken into account here, 3% who went to lectures and educational activities and a small proportion of the 29% who visited indoor social activities. Most of these, were visits to dances and this category of visits to dances should have added to it 5% of the wives who also said, in response to a direct question, that they visited dance halls.

The importance of a club may be further measured by the fact that two-thirds of the housewives visiting a club were women who attend regularly and a third of the husbands who visited the club were also regular attenders. Amongst the unmarried adults the proportion of regular attenders was over four-fifths. It appears that the club is relatively more important to married women and to unmarried adults than to men.

70% of women went to clubs within 1100 yards of their home, as did 54% of the husbands and 59% of the unmarried adults. Thus an appreciable proportion of all those visiting clubs were prepared to go some distance for their centre of interest.

Taking the whole of the housewives’ sample 10% said that it was very important to have a club near their home, 3% said that it was somewhat important. The proportions of all husbands were 8% and 4% and of all unmarried adults 9% and 4%. Thus for a little over 12% of the population a club, hall or meeting place was regarded as being an important amenity to have near the home.

Some further light on the problem of the communtiy centre is thrown by the comments of the three groups about their social interests; 5% of the housewives making comments mentioned guilds, 2% mentioned dancing, 6% mentioned miscellaneous indoor activities, 2% mentioned social clubs and 1% mentioned educational activities. Of the husbands making comments 4% mentioned indoor activities, 2% church activities, 3% social clubs and 1% educational activities. Of the social interests mentioned by unmarried adults dancing was the most important being mentioned by 23%, other indoor activities were mentioned by 6%, church activities by 10% and social clubs by 4%. The interests of the unmarried men included dancing mentioned by 11%, indoor activities mentioned by 9%, church activities by 5%, social clubs by 6% and educational activities mentioned by 2%.

It should be remembered that these refer to less than half of the sample.

6.5¾ 5 Visits to Sports Grounds

Visits to Sports Grounds were mentioned by 8% of housewives, by 42% of husbands and by 19% of unmarried adults. A further 6% of husbands mentioned in addition visits to professional sports such as boxing, wrestling, etc.

6.5 6 The Public House

The public house was visited by 25% of all the husbands and by 4% of the unmarried adults. It is possible that as these questions were not prompted these results are an under-estimate.

In the course of field work interviewers received many suggestions and comments about public houses. These were all directed towards raising the level of public houses and to making them more like English public houses, or road-houses. A typical comment was that the public house ought to be a place where one could take one’s wife without being ashamed. On new estates complaints were made that some of the more rowdy elements swamped the public houses and made them unpleasant for the rest of the community. The noise associated with some of these public houses was mentioned in some cases as a nuisance by families living in the vicinity.

6.5 7 Other Leisure Activities

Other leisure activities affected only a very small proportion of each sample; thus the library was visited by 3% of housewives, 4% of husbands and 3% of unmarried adults. Theatres and concerts were visited by 4% of housewives, 6% of husbands and 4% of unmarried adults. Most of the other activities mentioned have already been included in discussion of outdoor athletics and of the community centre.

6.5 8 In conclusion it is clear that the cinema dominates the social life of all groups. The park is mainly important for women and women with children and to a less extent, older men. There are a wide range of social activities which might be associated in a community centre which would command support from at least one-fifth of the population and undoubtedly more would become interested when it was known that such a centre was available. Outdoor sports were important to husbands and to the unmarried adults, but only to wives to a very minor extent. Visits to Sports Grounds were a major interest for husbands and unmarried adults. Next to the cinema, dancing was undoubtedly the main social activity of the unmarried adult.

6.6 The Future House, Garden and Community

6.6 1 Certain difficulties attended the asking of questions about the future houses and community. To many persons the whole discussion was quite unreal and often our interviewers were greeted with such statements as “It’s no good talking to us about new houses, we have had our name down for one for 10, 15 or 20 years”, So many promises have been made in the past about housing that it was difficult for some people to treat the subject seriously. In general, when the purpose of the survey had been fully explained, most people were willing to answer the questions and, as the interview progresses, become genuinely interested.

Discussions about house type were mostly overshadowed by the present condition of so much Scottish housing. The desire to get away from bad tenement conditions was absolutely paramount and it was difficult for many housewives and some husbands to take step further to imagine what sort of house they wished to live in. Typical remarks were “Any house in which we have a door of our own”, “Any house with a bathroom”, or - “Anywhere where we do not have to go up more than, three flights of stairs”.

Reaction from the tenement is the main reason for the overwhelming preference for the bungalow - which has the advantage of being on one floor as well as being isolated.

In new estates the attitude was rather different. The poor construction of many of the new houses was commented upon, particularly from the point of view of noise and warmth. Reference to the thick walls of the old tenement was made when comparing them with new houses. Many suggestions were made for the better use of tenements; for example, some people suggested tenements of not more than three storeys with old people and families with children occupying the ground floors. An idea of the extent of the interest may be gauged from the fact that one interviewer alone, had examples quoted to her of housing in Monkseaton (Northumberland ) Rossyth, Letchworth, Colinton (Edinburgh), and Aldershot by Glasgow tenants. Reference was often made to Canadian and American experience.

In discussing new communities with dwellers on new estates the transport services, shopping and social facilities were mentioned very frequently. Where the transport service was good satisfaction seemed fairly general, but a bad transport service coloured the whole of the attitudes to the community. Inadequacy of shopping facilities and social amenities on new estates was a very frequent source of dissatisfaction and on these topics those interviewed were very full of intelligent and helpful suggestions.

6.6 2 The Type of House Preferred

The single storey or self-contained house or bungalow was the type of dwelling favoured by the greatest proportion of husbands, wives and unmarried adults, it was preferred by 39% of the housewives who wanted to to move and by 41% of the husbands who wanted to move and by 40% of all unmarried adults. The next two most important types were the flatted and 2 storey self-contained house. The flatted type was preferred by 22% of the housewives who wanted to move, 23% of the husbands who wanted to move and 17% of all the unmarried adults. The two storey self-contained house was preferred by 19% of the housewives who wanted to move, 23% of the husbands who wanted to move and 24% of all the unmarried adults. Tenements and terraced houses were preferred by small groups of less than 10% in each case.

There was a fairly close correlation between the views of the husband and wife as to the sort of house they preferred; thus of the wives who preferred the flatted type of house 47% had husbands who also chose this type of house as their future dwelling, of the wives who chose bungalows 72% had husbands who preferred the same type of house and of the wives who preferred the two storey self-contained house 60% had husbands who expressed a preference for the same sort of house. The results for the tenement and the terraced houses were similar.

It is clear from this that although in most cases the husband and wife agree about the type of house they prefer, there is still, in many cases a differences of opinion which was recorded even though both parties knew that the other had given an opinion.

6.6 3 Gardens

A garden was almost unanimously considered desirable and it was wanted near the home. A few preferred the allotment garden and in some cases both types of gardens were wanted.

People interviewed on some of the new estates had a good deal to say on the subject of gardens. Gardens were often provided without paths and with inadequate fencing. This was mentioned most often in mixed estates where complaints of damage by children and thefts of vegetables were frequently mentioned.

The drying green was a source of dissatisfaction in many estates owing to the difficulty of arranging for the use of the clothes lines by different families. It only required one of the wives sharing to be awkward and the whole system became difficult. Mothers with children complained about the restriction on the use of clothes lines on Sunday, particularly where the stock of baby clothes was limited. This provision sometimes caused the housewife to dry clothes in her kitchen on Sunday and comment was made about this.

It is worth noting that 16% of the husbands mentioned gardening as being a leisure activity in their comments about social and leisure activities.

6.6 4 The Location of the New Dwelling

The first point of note in this discussion is that a considerable proportion of all persons interviewed were unwilling to move and so may be considered to be rooted in their present community. Of these who wanted to move the following is the main picture of their choice:-

Of the housewives who wished to move 57% wished to live in large cities, 29% in small burghs, 13% in the country and 1% mentioned that they would like to live by the sea.

The preference of the husbands who wanted to move were as follows:-

57% wished to live in a large city, 30% in a small burgh, 13% in the country and 1% by the sea. There is no significant difference between the views of the husband and wife in this respect.

The views of the unmarried adults were similar, 50% wished to live in a large city, 26% in a small burgh, 11% in the country, and 11% by the sea.

A very large proportion in all cases preferred to go on living in the sort of town in which their homes were already; thus 60% of housewives living in the large cities wished to go on living there, 42% of those living in medium towns wished to continue living there, and 39% of those living in small towns wished to remain in small towns. The proportions of the husbands were 62% who wished to go on living in large cities, 43% in medium towns and 31% in small towns. Of the unmarried adults the proportions were 76% who wished to go on living in large cities, 49% who wished to go on living in medium towns and 52% who wished to go on living in small towns.

Within the large town itself, there was a considerable proportion who were willing to move from the centre of the large town to the outskirts in all groups.

6.6 5 Reasons for Preferring certain Locations for the Future Dwelling

In all cases ‘Nearness to work’ appeared to be the main reason for choosing any future dwelling. Any consideration about choice of future community must be reviewed in the light of the fact that all these opinions were dominated by the dependence on the present job and in some measure by the fear of unemployment. Other important reasons were that the person interviewed ‘Had always lived in this place’, or that the particular area chosen was ‘Healthier’, ‘Better for children’ or ‘Had better social amenities’.

In general, after the question of nearness to work the reasons given show some of the points that are important in the minds of people when considering a new community. They appear to be anxious to have a healthy locality, quiet, away from smoke, dirt and noise. They wanted it to be in familial surroundings with good shopping facilities and transport services.

This desire to retain old ties was also shown by some of the comments made by housewives and others living on old estates which showed how the members of the family sometimes returned to the old area for shopping, for leisure activities, to visit public houses, dance halls, etc., with which they were familiar and to visit friends and relations in the old area.

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