The ultimate class quiz

Warning: Those who fret about pointless social classifications should look away now

Last week, I and millions of other Britons wasted two minutes of office time by going to the BBC website and taking its class test. There were five questions, three of which concerned income and assets, one was about the occupations of your friends, and another on how you spend your leisure. Of the seven possible outcomes, I was, absurdly, judged to be the top one – a member of the elite. This will come as news to the neighbours in my street of terraced three-bedroomed houses, with converted front gardens where we park our second-hand cars.

So, I did it again, this time removing from my circle of friends the chief executive with whom I sometimes play golf, making my savings more modest than even they are, and pretending I spent my weekends at jazz clubs and gigs. And I found I had slipped a notch or two down the social scale to "middle-class technical", which, although a classification based on several lies, is probably more accurate.

It is all, of course, rather silly – class turned into a sort of parlour game, which is probably how most of us instinctively view the matter these days. Gone are the times, we think, when you could be asked by a public-school-educated colleague, as I was in 1981 when I first joined the staff of The Observer: "Oh, hello. And where do your people come from?" I was so stunned by this Bertie Woosterish question that I could only mumble that I lived in Croydon, which was not, I suspect, the locating point in the shires he was looking for.

We've outgrown class, haven't we? What with broadcasters no longer having to speak in the strangulated vowels of Edwardian country houses (as in "Ed-waar-dien", and the milk going "orf"), and the clothes you wear no longer announcing your income and background, class is a thing of the past, isn't it?

Well, in the sense of something you are born into and most likely will not escape, it has indeed died. In the sense that people are instantly judged by their background and accent, as they were generations ago, it's "gorn" for good.

It has been replaced by something more fluid and subtle. If you doubt that, take a sizeable step outside your usual social circles. If you were brought up, and still live, in modest circumstances, but like music, then splash out on tickets for Glyndebourne, and see how you react to the braying champagne picnics. If you were brought up in a large detached in the leafy suburbs, or went to public school, spend a week at Butlin's. This is not a matter of snobbery – inverted or otherwise – but of comfort zones. And that, probably, is what the thing we used to think of as class has now become.

Ciabatta or Mother's Pride? Ornamental grasses or bog-standard begonias?

Of such things are social divisions made – or are they? To find your true place in the world, ta ke this new IoS test, carefully crafted by our elite team of techno-labourers - David Randall, Matthew Bell and Simmy Richman

What class are you? Upper, middle, working, chattering, or, maybe, under? Are you a toff, chav, or pleb? A Sloane Ranger, Essex man, or Worcester woman? A yuppie or a dinky? Or do you belong to one of the novelty categories always being dreamed up by an organisation or sociologist in need of a little easy publicity? A twinky (two incomes, nanny and kids), perhaps; a woopie (well-off older person), a snag (sensitive new-age guy), or maybe even a pillock (paltry income lots of kids)? Last week, just to cause further confusion among the gullible, along came the BBC with yet more pigeon holes into which the socially anxious can place themselves.

Time for The Independent on Sunday to bring a little clarity to these matters. The only way to tell what class you are is to take this sophisticated test of social mores and habits devised by our socially varied staff.

What do you call the loo in your house?

a) Toilet

b) Lavatory

c) Bog

d) We don't mention such things

You move into a new home and want to improve the garden. What is the first thing you do?

a) Ask around for the name of a good landscape designer

b) Spend £2,000 on this year's must-have ornamental grasses and shrubs

c) Plant begonias and busy lizzies in neat rows

d) Ask the prison governor for permission to grow some vegetables

At the last wedding you attended, how did the invitation come?

a) On an embossed and gilded card

b) A card decorated with photos of the bride and groom on their holidays

c) By text message

d) Someone saw it on a Facebook page and Tweeted it

And the groom wore?

a) White tie and tails

b) A hired morning suit

c) A lounge suit

d) Back-to-front baseball cap

You fancy a cup of tea. Do you:

a) Take milk and three sugars

b) Prefer PG Tips to Tesco's own brand

c) Insist on a bone-china mug

d) Ring the bell for Carson

You wish to express an opinion on a story in the news. Do you:

a) Post a comment online signed broken-Brittan

b) Phone Radio Five Live from the van

c) Write a letter to The Times

d) Collar Dave at the point-to-point

A neighbour knocks on your door at night, explains that a family member is unwell, and asks for all noise to be kept to a minimum. Do you:

a) Not understand, the nearest house to yours being a mile away

b) Apologise profusely and say that the recording of early Baroque music will now be turned down

c) Tell him he's out of order, that you're within your rights, and then turn the Sky Movies Plus film you're watching up to full volume

d) Set your bull mastiffs on him

What do you think a dumb waiter is?

a) A small table on which drinks and small trays are placed

b) An orally disadvantaged service worker in a restaurant

c) One who doesn't know what today's specials are

d) Stupid Herbert working in café who deserves a good smacking

(For men) Do you think Pippa Middleton is:

a) Middle class and on-the-make

b) A bit posh

c) Way out of your league

d) Well-fit

(For women) Do you think Pippa Middleton is:

a) Middle class and on-the-make

b) Not as posh as she thinks she is

c) The party planner from hell

d) The kind of best-friend I wish I had

Your family cutlery is stamped with:

a) The family crest

b) Hallmarks

c) EPNS

d) "Property of Butlin's"

You work for the BBC, take its class test, and find you are neither 'elite' nor 'technical middle class'. Do you:

a) Shrug it off

b) Make a complaint to your department's anti-discrimination officer

c) Move to ITV

d) Seek professional counselling

You need a new car. Do you:

a) Ask around at the pub

b) Log on to eBay

c) Telephone your BMW dealer

d) Let your driver keep the old one

You are mentioned in the Society pages of a newspaper. This is because:

a) You are a case study in The Guardian

b) You placed a small ad in The Guardian

c) You announced your daughter's wedding in The Daily Telegraph

d) You let Tatler cover your fund-raiser

Your favourite bread is:

a) Ciabatta

b) Focaccia

c) Sourdough

d) Mother's Pride

Which of these phrases do you most frequently see on the packaging of the food you buy?

a) "Fortnum & Mason"

b) "As seen on TV!"

c) "2 for 1!"

d) "Reconstituted meat product"

Your knowledge of Italian is:

a) Based on the Domino's Pizza menu

b) Comprised mainly of footballers' names

c) Much improved since you got the place in Puglia

d) Handy for Glyndebourne

Your conservatory is:

a) Leaking

b) The biggest in the Close

c) Featured in Amdega's latest ad

d) More of a lean-to

Your dog has:

a) An Asbo

b) Its own place on the settee

c) Weak back legs, as Labradors tend to do

d) Had a good season

Your favourite high-street eaterie is:

a) Carluccio's

b) Pizza Express

c) Angus Steak House

d) Ozzie's Kebabs

Do you have a regular…

a) ... organic vegetable delivery

b) ... colonic

c) ... spa-weekend break

d) ... argument with your spouse

Now check your scores...

How to score:

All (a) answers are worth 10 points; (b) 5; (c) 2; and (d) 0.

So what class are you?

35-50 points Middle class

25-34 Middle class

15-24 Middle class

5-14 Middle class

Fewer than 4 Middle class

Well, as a reader of this newspaper, what else did you expect?

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Junior IT Technician

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you want the opportunity to ...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Support Worker

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Home Care Support Workers needed in the Hastin...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Support Worker - Car / Bike / Moped Drivers

£7 - £11 per hour: Recruitment Genius: NEW branch opening soon in Worthing fol...

Recruitment Genius: Website Content Designer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join the UK's leadin...

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent