We’re all squeezed now

Published on Incomes and Inequality

[Extract]

Research suggests that most British people will call themselves middle class by 2020. But many will find it increasingly hard to achieve the lifestyle that is supposed to go with it.

It is one of the most famous sketches in comedy: John Cleese, Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett, lined up in descending height, dressed as the three tiers of the British class system: a pinstriped upper-class Cleese to the left; a middle-class Barker in suit and tie in the centre; and Corbett, meek and flat-capped, playing the role of the lower class, who sighs: “I know my place.”