New research suggests that Britain has become a nation of “kitchen supper” (relaxed, friendly meals) hosts.
It was a phrase, which caused a national debate about class when uttered last year by Cabinet minister, Francis Maude.
A recent report commissioned by Lloyds Bank Home Insurance on the changing face of British households found that, even though two thirds of homes have a separate dining room, they are being pressed into useless space.
According to the report, a vast majority of Britons entertain guests in the kitchen rather than any other room in the house.
The report also found that the kitchen is now the most valuable room in the house – packed with the most expensive gadgets and furniture.
The report concluded that Britain is witnessing the “death of the dining room”. The modern-day family finds itself in a major time crunch – meaning families are turning their backs on those all-important family meals.
Last year, Francis Maude caused outrage after remarking that the meals David Cameron held at his Downing Street flat were just “kitchen suppers” rather than official dinners in a formal setting.
The Cabinet minister was accused of being out-of-touch with ordinary people by using a term favoured by the upper middle class elite.
A poll of homeowners, found that:
Commissioned by The Telegraph
Melanie Backe-Hansen, house historian and author of House Histories: The Secrets Behind Your Front Door, said: “It is fascinating to see modern life taking its toll on how we use our homes.
“Although nowadays living spaces in the home are less defined than the Victorian period, and far more multifunctional, it seems the tradition of families sitting down to eat together may be impacted by longer working hours, more hectic social lives and the growing influence of technology.”