Coronavirus: Third of people in UK have enjoyed lockdown, report reveals

Those with higher incomes and those living with others have enjoyed the period the most

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announces a further easing of Britain's months-long coronavirus lockdown at a media briefing on June 23, 2020. 10 Downing Street via AP
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announces a further easing of Britain's months-long coronavirus lockdown at a media briefing on June 23, 2020. 10 Downing Street via AP

A third of people surveyed in Britain say they have enjoyed the coronavirus lockdown period.

The UK's largest survey of adults' well-being and mental health during the Covid-19 pandemic found that those aged 30-59, those with higher incomes and those living with others have enjoyed the period the most, according to the University College London (UCL) Covid-19 social study.

More than 70,000 people have been questioned weekly over the past 14 weeks as part of the project.

It also shows that 46 per cent of people overall have not been enjoying it.

According to the research, 17 per cent of people have not been enjoying lockdown "at all", and only 4 per cent have been enjoying it "very much".

Lead author Dr Daisy Fancourt, from UCL's Institute of Epidemiology and Health Care, said lower-income households have struggled with lockdown more than others.

"Our study shows that the majority of people are either not enjoying the lockdown or have mixed feelings about it," she said.

"This is especially true amongst groups with a lower household income, who may be living in accommodation which is overcrowded or lacking in outside space, and those living alone, who may be feeling more isolated than those living with others.

"Of the third of people who report enjoying lockdown, a large number have higher household incomes and live with others or children, suggesting these people may have been less affected by the economic and social restrictions."

Researchers say the findings suggest that those enjoying the lockdown may have been less affected by the economic and social restrictions.

A third of those questioned said they would not miss lockdown.

The study also looked at behavioural changes, and found that four in 10 UK adults said they had gained weight.

Cheryl Lloyd, education programme head at the Nuffield Foundation, said: "Given that low earners have been most at risk of the negative social and economic consequences of the pandemic it is unsurprising that they have been less likely to enjoy lockdown than those on higher incomes.

"It is essential the policy response takes steps to reduce inequalities and minimise the longer-term scarring effects of the pandemic on low earners."

The survey also found that young people were found to be more likely to change their eating and diet behaviours than older adults.

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Published: June 26, 2020 08:07 AM

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