8 reasons you think people are loaded when you grow up on a council estate

Taite Johnson writes about her perception of wealth growing up
Taite Johnson writes about her perception of wealth growing up -Credit:TAITE JOHNSON

As a child growing up on a council estate in Cardiff there were many everyday things that I didn't have or do that I thought made a person rich - I still think this about some. I grew up in a council house in Ely, which was the most deprived ward in Cardiff when I was a child and is still one of to date.

I loved living in Ely growing up and my childhood does prove that money is not the epitome of happiness. In saying that I was often jealous of people that had branded drinks or a dishwasher in their kitchen.

Some of the things on this list I have since realised did not make you rich if you had them but there are a few I still believe make you rich. Let me know in the comments if you agree or if there are any that should be added to the list.

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An extension/conservatory

As a tenant living in a council house you are not able to make major changes to the property. This means that anyone who was able to build an extension or conservatory onto the back of their house did not live in a council house and were therefore rich.

Particularly glass conservatories, they were the epitome of wealth. Dining rooms in themselves could also be added to this list but if a house had a dining room in the conservatory, that definitely made you rich.

More than one car per household

Growing up our household didn't have a car at all and as Cardiff had decent public transport with trains, buses and coaches being accessible we never felt we really needed one. Many of my neighbours or friends parents had a car but one that would be shared between them, therefore if someone had more than one car per household I thought they were rich.

Now as an adult who owns my own car, I have realised that it is not as expensive to run as I thought growing up and more than one car for a family is not as luxurious as I once thought. One thing that I still find shows wealth is a garage.

An aerial view of Ely in Cardiff -Credit:Matthew Horwood
An aerial view of Ely in Cardiff -Credit:Matthew Horwood

A kitchen centre island

Council houses in Cardiff are not known to have massive kitchens with some, including mine, barely able to fit a dining table. Therefore, people who had a centre island or a breakfast bar in their kitchen were definitely rich in my eyes. Now on my list of aspects of my dream home is a kitchen island with fancy tall stools, and that is when I know I have done well.

Branded drinks

Many people may know of 'council pop', which would be the number one drink in our household growing up with an occasional drop of squash. If we were treated to any fizzy drinks we would have the supermarket own brand version of popular carbonated drinks.

When I was a child, if I went to a house, opened the fridge and saw a selection of branded Coca Cola or lemonade, it was like hitting the jackpot. Get the best user experience with WalesOnline’s Premium app on Apple or Android

A fridge with handles

When speaking to people about a fridge with handles making you rich, a few people did not know what I meant by 'handles' with some not even knowing that they come without them. Some fridges have handle bars for you to open them while others just have a gap at the bottom or the side of the door for you to open it, the ones with handles are more expensive therefore made you rich. Also, if you have one with double doors that practically makes you a millionaire to me.

A dishwasher

The dishwasher in my house growing up was either my mum, my sister or I not a fancy machine that does it for you. I completely understand now that washing the dishes is a chore and a dishwasher would make it so much more convenient but it did make you rich if you had one in your kitchen. There have been many times when I have longed for a dishwasher.

Connecting kitchen and living room

In most, if not all, council houses the kitchen and the living room are separate rooms with the stairs separating them. Growing up I always wanted to have a house one day that had a kitchen that connected with the living room or even better a house where they are in the same space. For the latest Cardiff news, sign up to our newsletter here

Doing a food shop at Waitrose or Marks & Spencer

I think this one speaks for itself. Even if one day I do earn a six figure salary, I could not bring myself to do a weekly food shop at a high-end supermarket. I will forever love a bargain and I couldn't bring myself to spend more on a product that I know I could find less expensive somewhere else.