Family 2001

Families in the 2000s are different from those in any of the other periods of time that we have looked at.

The divorce rate in 2000 was 368% higher than in 1950. The number of re-marriages is 62% higher but the number of actual marriages has fallen. This means that families come in all different shapes and sizes.

In Stowupland the majority of the households are occupied by pensioners or are ‘married households’ but the census also shows other types of households such as one parent, or single occupation.

Out of 738 households in 2001 only 22 are lone parents, just 3% of all the households. Surprisingly this is less than in 1851 when nearly 11% of all Stowupland households were single parent families!

Different Kinds of Families

Nowadays it is not unusual for families to be made up in different ways.

  • They might have one parent or two;
  • there are step-families and adoptive families.
  • Some children live with their grandparents
  • and others may live in foster homes.

Grand Parents
Grand Parents - J Aaron Farr
Used under Creative Commons
On the whole families still tend to have just the immediate family living together in the same house even though the average life expectancy for men has risen to 76 years and almost 81 for women.

This means that many more children will know their grandparents or even great-grandparents than 1851, 1901 or 1951 but they are very unlikely to live with them.

Historic Surnames

Surprisingly Stowupland still has many of the family names from the 1850s showing up on its records in 2001. There are many new names and the ethnicity of this small village is also changing but the core group of family names still survive. There are still Diapers, Wildens and Lockwoods in the village.

Working Couples

Many women work outside the home and the majority of families would struggle to run a household on just one wage. The average wage in Suffolk is £22,000 a year – lower than the national average. Many families live on much less than this.


This exhibition is part of a wider sustainability project delivered through the Rural Museums East Partnership. It is funded by Renaissance East of England.

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