Neighbourhood Identity: Effects Of Time, Location And Social Class

This study explores the ways in which neighbourhood identity is formed and considers the implications for policies that seek to improve and enhance neighbourhoods and communities. Part of the motivation for the study was to explore why regeneration policies often fail in their objectives and how far the reputations of housing estates – ‘good’ and ‘bad’ – persist or change over time. The study focused on how such reputations are established and understood by those from within and outside particular places and what implications this has for the identities of neighbourhoods and the individuals who live in them. To explore these issues, the study concentrated on three neighbourhoods in the city of Stirling in central Scotland – Raploch, Riverside and Randolph Road – which were chosen for their distinct socio-economic profiles and differing relative identities. Each was constructed in the 1920s and 1930s as a ‘planned community’. Raploch was selected as being the ‘poorer’ working class neighbourhood, Riverside the ‘wealthier’ working class one, and Randolph Road middle class and ‘aspiring’. The study also explored what it meant to ‘come fae’ (come from) each of these neighbourhoods as a way of understanding issues of belonging and attachment to particular places.