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Does the 'quality of life' vary in Enfield?
Free essay example:
Does the 'quality of life' vary in Enfield?
I hope to find a pattern that will show us which areas of Enfield offer a better of quality of life than others. I also hope find out whether Enfield has typical suburban characteristics and compare it to other suburban towns in different areas of London.
The assignment was to survey roads in four different wards in the borough of Enfield. These wards were chosen by Mr. Porter. We then had to choose another ward to look at on our own. We were to assess these different areas by using an ‘Environmental Quality Survey’ (EQS). Various properties of each road will be recorded and awarded marks for different aspects. These properties were to be chosen by ourselves individually.
Enfield is a suburban borough lying on the outskirts of London. It is made up of 23 wards- all of different sizes. It works out that each ward has around the same population, meaning that the larger wards such as Chase will be less densely populated. The entire population of Enfield comes to nearly 300,000 inhabitants. The map of greater London below shows the position of Enfield in the far north of the map.
The map below shows the whole of Enfield. There are borders marking where the different wards are. I have highlighted the four wards that I will be looking at- Grange, Bush Hill Park, Haselbury and Edmonton Green. I also chose to investigate Southgate.
The definition of ‘suburb’ is a district lying on the borders of a city. Houses are usually spread over a large distance. Towards the edges of the suburbs you will find larger houses. Of course there will be smaller towns spread throughout the suburbs. We can expect many families, commuters, and older residents to inhabit suburban towns because they offer affordable and convenient housing, good facilities and plenty of shops and entertainment. Suburbs are the perfectly place for older people to retire and settle down. They are also a place for younger people because they can be affordable and practical.
A model is a representation of a typical city. There are various models created by different people who have different ideas as to how a city tends to be structured. Most cities (especially older ones) were not designed to form a pattern. Newer areas such as Milton Keynes were planned out perfectly so that there was a network of straight roads.
The Burgess Model
This is the most common model and probably the most accurate. It shows the CBD (central business district) at the centre of the city. This is the main focal point of the city. As you move further away from the centre the buildings become more recent and land values increase. In zone 3 you would expect to find large tower blocks to home lots of people in a smaller space. In zone 5 you would find larger detached housing and estates spread over a wider space. . This is due to rapid growth and development of a city. Most cities originate from an original settlement, which can normally be found at the centre of the city. As more people move to the city they vacate more space and grow outwards. Workers live outside of the cit where housing is more affordable and can be larger. They can travel into the city for their jobs by car or efficient tube services.
The Hoyt Model
The Hoyt model comes from a slightly different idea about how cities crew. Instead of growing outwards and forming rings around the centre, Hoyt thought that cities grew in wedge shaped sectors. These wedges were formed along main transport routes leading to the Central Business District. In the same way that older factories were located by railways and canals, the newer factories and businesses were set up along main roads. This allowed people to live in the suburbs and then commute into the city very easily.
I predict that the western wards of Enfield will have a better quality of life than the eastern wards of Enfield. The quality of the surroundings in the west will be a lot better and the land will be taken care of a lot more.
Environmental Quality Survey
An Environmental Quality Survey (EQS) is a survey that will hopefully help us to get an idea of the ‘quality of life’ in different areas- in this case the wards of Enfield. The 5 wards selected were chosen purposely so that we could examine the differences between the western wards and the eastern wards. Ideally we would collect data from all the wards of Enfield but it would simply be too much information to collect in the time given. We recorded data from a belt stretching across the borough of Enfield, giving us a ‘representative sample’. There may also be differences in the quality of life between the northern and southern wards but out EQS would not be able to pick those differences up. To get around this we can look at secondary data (data collected previously) to examine the quality of life all over Enfield. Recording data from three wards (western, central and eastern) would not be very accurate. Looking at 5 wards gives you a better transition in the change of quality of life.
For our EQS we will collect primary data (data collected by you). Primary data is useful because in order to collect it you must visit each area and use your own methods of collecting it- meaning you can record in any way that works best for you.
A very important stage is deciding which factors you will record. You must take into account which things will give the best representation of the quality of life. We could assess things such as Litter, Cars, House Quality, and Greenery etc. The survey must be made by using factors that can be assessed objectively. This means you must record results using proper measurements and not by giving a personal opinion. For example if you are assessing the amount of litter on a street would count pieces of litter in a set area and not simply say ‘there is quite a lot of litter’ or ‘there is a bit of litter in places’. This is called objective and subjective
I have arranged my survey into six different sections; Amount of litter, House density, Amount of greenery, Traffic, Cars, Garages/Driveways. In each section points will be awarded for the standard of certain factors. Measurements will fall into different point groups. For example, if an area contains 47 pieces of litter it will be awarded 3 points. Any streets that fall into this category will be awarded 2 points.
At the end I will arrange them and take the area with the highest score. This should be the area with the ‘best quality of life’. For the most accurate results you should use the same 50m sample or road in each street.
These are the roads we surveyed from each ward
Argyle Road Bourne Avenue
Brook Cresent Meadway
Baxter Road The Ridgeway
- Amount of Litter
I chose to measure the amount of litter because it will give a reasonably good idea about how well people treat the land in that area. If an area is tidy, neat and pleasing to the eye then people will treat it better and not drop litter on it. The wards that people respect the most are usually the ones with the higher quality of life.
To measure, take a 50m sample from any section of the road and count the amount of litter on both sides of the road. Only count litter in the street or on the pavement. Include litter in people’s front gardens or houses. Count even small pieces of litter. If there are lots of tiny pieces you can record it to your own judgement. Award points as follows:
0-10 pieces of litter – 6 points
11-20 pieces of litter – 5 points
21-30 pieces of litter – 4 points
31-40 pieces of litter – 3 points
41-50 pieces of litter – 2 point
51-60+ pieces of litter – 1 point
61 + pieces of litter – 0 points
2. Housing Density
Housing density tells us how closely packed the houses in the area are. Areas with a generally higher quality of life contain houses that have gaps in between houses because there is more land available. Areas with a generally lower quality of life contain houses that are packed tightly as there is less land. If the houses are packed tightly together it is usually so more people can live in a certain space.
To measure, use the same 50m sample in each street as you did when you measured the amount of litter. Count the amount of houses (or individual living spaces) in that 50m stretch on both sides of the street. Include flats, apartment blocks, multi-storey complexes and estates. If there is a block of flats then each individual one must be counted separately. If a building is situated on the border line then include it in your measurement. If there are only houses on side of the street then double the number but note that this is the case. Award points as follows:
0-5 houses – 8 points
6-10 houses - 6 points
11-15 houses – 4 points
16-20 houses – 2 point
21+ houses - 0 points
- Amount of Greenery
Normally areas with more greenery have been cared for by the council or by inhabitants. People who own more expensive houses are more likely to look after their gardens and make then look nice. These houses tend to have a higher quality of life.
To measure the amount of greenery you must count any trees on the street that are taller than you. Count any trees on the pavements, front gardens and back gardens (where possible). I am around 1m 75 so any trees taller than that height are included. Do not include bushes or shrubs.
20 + trees – 5 points
16-19 trees – 4 points
12-15 trees – 3 points
8-11 trees – 2 points
4-7 trees - 1 points
0-3 trees – 0 points
- Size Of Housing
A very important factor is the type of housing and how big it is. House pricing is normally parallel to the size of the house. In areas with a higher quality of life the houses are larger as they have more land to build on and more money to spend on houses. Areas with a lower quality of life tend to contain terraced houses or flats which offer cheaper housing and allow more people to occupy a small space. I feel that this is one of the most important factors so a maximum of 10 points can be awarded.
For this measurement you must be slightly subjective. Write down the amount of terraced, semi-detached and detached houses there are. Award points like this…
All Detached – 10 points
Half Detached and Half Semi-detached – 8 points
Some Detached but mostly Semi-detached – 6 points
Some semi-detached but mostly terraced – 4 points
All terraced – 2 points
- Traffic Congestion
Areas with high traffic congestion levels are normally closer to main roads and schools. These areas are usually very congested with pedestrians and are noisy and have fairly cheap housing. The best quality of life is usually found in quiet, more remote places.
To measure this you must count the amount of cars that pass through the street from either directions. Do not count cars that are leaving parking spaces. Award points as follows…
0-5 cars – 8 points 21-25 cars – 4 points
6-10 cars – 7 points 26-30 cars – 3 points
11-15 cars – 6 points 31-35 cars – 2 points
16-20 cars – 5 points 36-40 cars – 1 points
The best quality housing usually has driveways or garages to store vehicles or just for general storage. The amount of cars they hold differs but for this area I will count each driveway separately.
No Garages – 0 points
A quarter has garages – 3 points
Half have garages – 6 points
Three quarters have garages – 9 points
All have garages – 12 points
We did some brief preliminary work to allow us to test out our surveys in a real life situation and see if our methods for recording different things worked out and to test the scoring system. This preliminary work was conducted on Deansway, situated by The Latymer School. This is an area with lots of schools all in a small space and as we were recording our data at around 3:30 pm we had to take increased noise and traffic levels into account. I tested my method and I discovered that my prediction about litter was incorrect and there was far more than I had expected.
We carried out our recordings on the 26th of January 2006. The survey was bright and sunny. It is important to note the weather as that can slightly influence a higher mark on the more subjective measurements. We began the survey at 9:10am in the ward of Grange. As it was quite early in the morning we can expect that there might not be as many cars as there would be at other peak times (such as 5-6pm). We carried out our first survey at Bush Hill Park at around 12 o clock which meant that people were out getting their lunch and were able to answer a few questions.
The afternoon was spent in the eastern wards of Enfield. By this time it had clouded over, making the streets look dull and colourless. Our second survey in Ponders End was not so successful. Although we were standing outside a supermarket, not many people had time to answer our questions.
We did a questionnaire in two different wards- Ponders End and Bush Hill Park. We chose to do the survey in these wards so that we could get an idea of what life was like in western Enfield and eastern Enfield. We politely asked members of the public if they had time to answer a few questions and then gave them a survey using multiple choice answers.
A sensible questionnaire (in this case) would contain closed questions, meaning that only a certain range of answers can be given. When it comes to drawing graphs or presenting the information gathered from the questionnaire it is easier to have information which is organized and easy to read. If asking a question such as, ‘what is the most common crime you experience in the area’, you will get lots of varied responses such as ‘robberies’ or ‘graffiti’ or ‘muggings’. If you have a numerical answer you are able to calculate an average for the area and will eliminate any other answers, narrowing down the choice of responses the person can give. This is why we asked the general public to rate a topic from 1-5, 1 being the worst situation and 5 being the best situation.
We also used a common questionnaire (using the same questions) so that everyone in the year would get a variety of results and there would therefore be a larger sample size. We were able to combine all our results so we could get an even more reliable average. We also had to add two questions of our own.
The time, date and weather conditions must also be taken into account whilst conducting a survey. For example, if the weather was wet and rainy then this could influence a pedestrian’s mood and they may give negative and unreliable responses. If it was bright and sunny then they could respond more positively and award higher marks than they would normally give.
We asked the public to give a personal response to different factors.
Secondary Data - Census
Secondary data can be very useful. During an investigation you may not be able to go into as much depth as you might have hoped. In this case we can look at some data previously recorded and analyze that information. Hopefully this will extend our knowledge and understanding. However as secondary data is not recorded first-hand it could be slightly subjective or biased. We also do not know that it gives us accurate results.
I will arrange some results from the 2001 census and put them into graphs. These graphs should clearly vindicate a difference between the quality of life in the east and west. A census is reasonably accurate as it is repeated every ten years. It is also possible to look at past censuses and contrast them with the latest results.
Spearmans Rank Test
The Spearmans Rank Test is a way of analyzing a large set of data
These photos were taken from the School Internet site and were taken on the day that the EQS was conducted, so they count as secondary data.
You can see that the owners of this bungalow have put effort into making their front garden/driveway look pleasing to the eye. The plants are colourful and well kept and there is also a garage for car storage. The exterior walls of the house are pristine and have no flaked paint or chips in the brickwork and there are curtains hanging nicely in the window. A property like this would be on the market for around £350,000.
Bush Hill Park
This was the first road we looked at in Bush Hill Park was Colne Road. It is located fairly near a main road. The road is fairly wide which leaves room for on street parking. The housing on the street is all semi-detached and they have 2 meter gaps in between each one. Most have front gardens but as you can see in the photo they are not as large or well kept as the ones found in Grange. There are a couple of trees planted on the side of the pavement that bring colour to the street. You can also see that the pavements are not so well kept as the ones in Grange and there is more litter.
Edmonton Green was slightly different because there was a noticeable difference between the housing in the third street, Brook Crescent, compared to the first street, Argyle Road. For this reason I have included photos of both streets.
This was the first road we had a look at and immediately noticed that the street was a lot narrower. The houses are terraced and are very small in width. The exteriors have been decorated in different ways- some have red brickwork, some have grey brickwork, some have been painted and some are made with pebbledash. This makes the street look scrappy and inconsistent. The houses have front porches but have untrimmed hedges, flaked paintwork and are full of litter.
This next street was quite different to the first street in Edmonton Green, Argyle Road. As you can see the houses are semi-detached and more spaced out. A majority have off street parking. There is more greenery visible in this picture compared to the previous one, although the weather in this photo is grey and cloudy which makes the street look dull. There are telephone poles placed around the street which are quite unattractive. There are also concrete lamp posts which are also unattractive. You can see tower blocks in the background which suggests that the local neighbourhood has a lower quality of life.
We took these pictures from Southgate, the ward we chose to survey ourselves. Unfortunately the weather conditions weren’t great so the pictures look drab and dull, although you can still see the size and quality of the housing as well as the tidiness of the street.
This semi-detached house was the standard type of housing in this area. It has a large driveway with room for up to two cars. The roofing is quite neat and there are no defects on the exterior walls. The house has a garden which can be accessed via the side-passage.
You can also see that the street is very wide and appears to be quite clean. The hedges by the side of the road have been trimmed which shows that the area has been looked after well. A Mercedes-Benz is parked in one of the driveways which indicates that the owners of the house may be quite well off.
This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Human Geography section.
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