Then and now: changes through the years
Life in the 1950s, 60s and 70s can sometimes feel very different than the way we live today.
Little by little, small changes in everything from popular culture to the cost of living contribute to big differences over time.
Today we’re looking back at how we lived then and comparing it with how we live now. How else do you think life has changed?
Average house price
House prices are one of the simplest ways we can look at the cost of living, and there is much talk in the press about how unaffordable housing has become. Here’s a look at the average house price in the UK by decade:
• 1950s – £1,891
• 1960s – £3,620
• 1970s – £4975
• 1985 – £39,500
• 2017 – £226,367
Food and eating
• In 1970 the average loaf of bread cost 9p. In 1982, a white loaf averaged around 37p. Today, a white loaf costs an average of £1.05
• Dinner party dishes give an insight into what was popular in food by decade. In the 1950s, Pimento-stuffed olives were the height of fashion. While in the 1960s, a Baked Alaska was a real showstopper. In the 1970s prawn cocktail was commonly served to guests as the starter of choice, while in the 1980s vol-au-vents rose in popularity, as did many other dishes inspired by French cuisine. Today one of the most popular food trends is not the food itself but what its served in: deconstructed dishes and individual portions of desserts served in mason jars and starters served on cutting boards is considered fashionable.
• The Mini was first launched in 1960 and sold for £600.
• The Range Rover was launched in 1970 at the cost of £1998. In contrast, 2017 the Range Rover Evoque starts at £30,000.
• In 1970 a trip to the cinema cost less than 90p. In 2017 the average cost of a cinema ticket is around £10.
• A pint of lager cost just 20p in 1970. In 1982, the average cost of a pint was 73p. Today the average cost of a pint tops £3.
• In 1970, households had just three colour TV channels; BBC1, BBC2 and ITV. Today Freeview viewers enjoy upwards of 27 channels – all in colour.
• The cassette tape was introduced in 1963 and steadily grew in popularity in the 1970s and 80s. The Compact Disk – or CD – was introduced in the late 1970s and by early 1990s outsold the cassette format. Progress continued; with the introduction of the MP3 in the mid-200s, people quickly adopted the digital format instead.
• How we decorated our homes tells a vivid story about trends through the years. More than four million homes were built between 1919 and 1939 in the UK – and even today design is still heavily influenced by the architecture of this period. In the 1930s, boxy shapes, chrome colours, and art deco all signalled that people were embracing the modern.
• Interior trends of the 1960s borrowed from what came before – Victorian and Edwardian styles were used as the foundations for many designs, and given an irreverent twist with bold colours, textures and patterns. Living spaces were open plan and favoured sliding doors, pine was the most popular wood and ‘s’ and ‘egg’ shape furniture was considered fashionable.
• In the 1970s bold colours and textures were very fashionable. Accessories like shag rugs, peacock chairs and vinyl players were all features of a modern living room.
Rachel - Silversurfers Assistant Editor
Latest posts by Rachel - Silversurfers Assistant Editor (see all)
- Try a new hobby this autumn - October 19, 2018
- Slow cooker pork, shallot and red pepper goulash - October 18, 2018
- Storage hints and tips to make your food last longer - October 17, 2018
- Tips to encourage birds to your garden - October 16, 2018
- Do you understand cholesterol? - October 15, 2018
Leave a Comment!
Community Terms & Conditions
These content standards apply to any and all material which you contribute to our site (contributions), and to any interactive services associated with it.
You must comply with the spirit of the following standards as well as the letter. The standards apply to each part of any contribution as well as to its whole.
be accurate (where they state facts); be genuinely held (where they state opinions); and comply with applicable law in the UK and in any country from which they are posted.
Contributions must not:
contain any material which is defamatory of any person; or contain any material which is obscene, offensive, hateful or inflammatory; or promote sexually explicit material; or promote violence; promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age; or infringe any copyright, database right or trade mark of any other person; or be likely to deceive any person; or be made in breach of any legal duty owed to a third party, such as a contractual duty or a duty of confidence; or promote any illegal activity; or be threatening, abuse or invade another’s privacy, or cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety; or be likely to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person; or be used to impersonate any person, or to misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person; or give the impression that they emanate from us, if this is not the case; or advocate, promote or assist any unlawful act such as (by way of example only) copyright infringement or computer misuse.
Nurturing a safe environment
Our Silversurfers community is designed to foster friendships, based on trust, honesty, integrity and loyalty and is underpinned by these values.
We don't tolerate swearing, and reserve the right to remove any posts which we feel may offend others... let's keep it friendly!