A quiet week in Lake Wobegon? [editorial]

Golightley, Malcolm and Holloway, Margaret (2016) A quiet week in Lake Wobegon? [editorial]. British Journal of Social Work, 46 (6). pp. 1475-1484. ISSN 0045-3102

Full content URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcw130

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Item Type:Article
Item Status:Live Archive


As the English summer finally decided to arrive and the cold damp days become distant memories, the ‘Editorial Office’ relocated to its temporary summer seaside annex. The new base is a peculiarly English large static caravan in a small East Yorkshire town called Hornsea. This is a town that was known worldwide for its pottery—items of high function and some style, but the production of which has long since stopped. Now it is a sleepy coastal town with a small fishing industry, mainly exporting to mainland Europe. Not much else happens—well certainly not at speed. One of us grew up as an avid follower on the radio of another sleepy town and could not wait to hear the weekly monologue of the long-running ‘Prairie Home Companion’, based on a supposedly fictitious town of Lake Wobegon and dreamt up by Garrison Keeler, whose opening words, ‘Well, it’s been a quiet week in Lake Wobegon, Minnesota …’, seemed to characterise a rural town and idyll that time has since forgotten. 1 Hornsea, too, has a lake, affectionately known as ‘The Mere’, which it boasts is the largest lake in Yorkshire—although not much happens here either.
Well it may have been a quiet week in our summer annex and doubtlessly in Lake Wobegon, but elsewhere drama continues. Selecting at random a few events, we start with the BREXIT vote, which may prove to be one of those defining moments in UK history in which, contrary to most informed opinion, the UK population voted narrowly to leave the European Community. The vote, as surprising as it was divisive, was split across age and social groups, with young people generally behind the remain campaign and older people generally the leave, with the middle classes in remain and the working class for leave.

The effects of BREXIT will be felt at every level and time will be the judge of the wisdom of the decision to even put it to the vote. We now have a change of prime minister and Cabinet, and a quite uncertain future. The implications will be felt for social work as student exchanges, qualification equivalence, freedom of movement of social workers and research funding all need to be renegotiated.

Keywords:Social work
Subjects:L Social studies > L410 UK Social Policy
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Health & Social Care
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ID Code:27941
Deposited On:06 Oct 2017 09:45

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