LIFE IN BRITAIN IN THE 21st CENTURY
By Tim Lambert
British Society in the 21st Century
In the 21st century people in Britain enjoyed a higher standard of living than ever before in history. In 1998 only 27% of the population had a mobile phone. By 2008 79% of the population did. By 2018 the figure had risen to 95%. However the prosperity was not shared by all. In the 2010s some people used food banks.
In the early 21st century the UK continued its transformation from an industrial society, where most people worked in mining and manufacturing industry to a post-industrial society where most people work in service industries. In 2011 80.1% of the workforce were employed in service industries. At the beginning of the 21st century unemployment in Britain was low, only 5.5% but it rose sharply with the recession of 2008 and reached 8% in 2011. However it then fell. It stood at 4.3% in November 2017.
In the early 21st century the population of Britain grew sharply, boosted by immigration. In 2001 the population of the UK was just under 59 million. By 2013 it had risen to 63.7 million. In 2018 it was estimated to be 66 million.
Meanwhile the internet had a great affect on life in Britain. In 1998 less than 10% of households in Britain had access to the internet. By 2006 the majority of households (57%) did. By 2018 90% of households had access to the internet. Emails and social networking sites made it easier for people to keep in touch with each other. Banking online became common. Shopping online became popular. So did Playing games online. Meanwhile in the 2000s a number game called sudoku became popular in Britain.
Medicine in the 21st Century
In the early 21st century medicine made rapid progress. New types of transplant were performed. In 2005 the first face transplant took place. Then in 2011 the first leg transplant was carried out. Then in 2012 the first womb transplant was carried out. Life expectancy was also higher than ever before. In 2015 it stood at 79 for a man and 83 for a woman. (In 1971 it was only 68 for a man and 72 for a woman).
Daily life in the Middle Ages
Daily life in the 16th Century
Daily life in the 17th century
Daily life in the 18th century
daily life in the 19th Century
Daily life in the 20th century
Last revised 2018