11 January 2000
Townies turn villages into suburbia

A NEW breed of “hobby gentrifiers” are transforming English rural villages, according to a report from the Economic and Social Research Council.

The gentrifiers are intent on restoring and upgrading old cottages and houses. But, according to the researchers, they are creating new divisions in many rural communities.

The latest arrivals spurn the low-income working classes and the unemployed.

They often find themselves at loggerheads with long-term residents who want to keep things as they are.