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My wife earns £30k pa, so on the cusp of the skilled/unskilled pay threshold. Phd & masters degree in genetics and 20 years practical experience in that field. She's explained to me umpteen times what she does, and I still don't understand. So, in my view, she is highly skilled in her field. But the job opportunities in this industry (research) are not generally well paid/rewarded in this country.
 

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In the 1940's my Great Grandfather worked as a Labourer/Farm helper and he managed to support 7 children and his (House) wife and rent a large 3 bedroom house with a huge garden.

You couldn't do that now, especially in Oxfordshire.

But we keep getting told how much better off we are now.
7 Children in two bedrooms. That standard of living would be considered living in poverty today. No doubt he needed the large garden because when he had finished his 60 hour working week he laboured in the garden to grow as much of his own food as he could.
 
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