A talk given at the Edinburgh Book Festival on August 29th, 2016.

Demographically, Britain has changed more in the last 15 years than the previous 50. Economically, the crash of 2008 has changed our society in ways we are still only just coming to recognize. Socially, the gaps between the haves, maybe-haves and have-not’s are wide and continue to grow. But we are mixing more, and something is changing in the heart of London – where change often comes first. Most recently in London housing prices have begun to fall, faster than in most other areas of England.So far housing prices in Scotland have not fallen since the Brexit vote. It is far to early too tell what the outcome of that vote might actually entail, but the vote itself appears to be part of a wider set of dramatic changes taking place in the UK as a whole, as private renting doubles in a decade, and hard-working immigrants have plugged some of the gaps left when health and education services are so underfunded.