Don’t hate me because I’m posh

Leeds might be full of posh people, but that doesn’t mean they have it easy. LILY JONES argues why you should cut ex-private school kids some slack.


This week my News Feed has been filled with friends taking the how-posh-are-you test, and it seems like pop culture is keen to mock those who might be deemed ‘posh’.

In Leeds, the instant reaction from many people I meet is “Don’t you talk posh’; taxi drivers regularly tell me I sound like someone from ‘Made in Chelsea’ (which I definitely do not); and last week after rejecting some meathead’s advances on a night out, I was called a ‘hooray whore’ (instead of a hooray Henry) – with alliteration, you’re meant to start the words with the same letter!

polo

Personally I never spend weekends like this

One night out, those I was with proceeded to rant about how private school people were ‘stuck up scum’, that all private school people ‘just play polo and do drugs of the Kings Road’ – seriously, do you hear yourself? – that all private school kids are ‘spoonfed’ (if only), and that they would not want to marry, nor be friends, with someone from private school. My friend and I pointed out that they had chosen to be friends with us. Suddenly, their feet became more interesting than looking at us. Funny how that happens…

posh1

These guys aren’t my mates

The people who have heard me speak are right. I am posh. I am well-spoken. I live in central London. I have been lucky enough to attend private school, and, despite the amount of prejudice I have encountered at Leeds, I am not ashamed of that. There are some distasteful people who fit the posh-kid stereotype. But as with any generalisation, it’s unfair. Before you even get into private schools there are admission exams. Mine required 5 tests followed by 6 interviews – surely proving even from the start private school really isn’t a walk in the park.

We didn't all live here!

We didn’t all live here!

It was once an ambition to send your children to private school: going to private school gives you amazing opportunities, a mad amount of general knowledge, and brilliant teaching. Who wouldn’t want to give that to their children? But now I feel like I have to defend that – and that is sad.  I shouldn’t have to worry about the inevitable stick I’ll get. I’ve said nothing offensive.

This isn’t a rant from a yuppie – I am the first to take the piss out of myself and my friends (some of whom do wear tweed and live on an estate in the country but shhh), – but merely a point that I would never judge anyone based on where they came from. So why are you judging me?