Journal of Youth Studies 12(5) pp 547-561
This article is concerned with the interplay of young people’s biographies and transforming landscapes in south-east Wales. In particular the article focuses on a South Wales Valleys town, Ebbw Vale, to explore how changes to a place can be understood in relation to, and alongside youth transitions. The article reports on the ways in which narratives of the transformation, redevelopment and regeneration of place sit alongside the biographical transformations of young people themselves, as they make their transitions into adulthood. The article draws on concepts borrowed from geography, anthropology and architecture to advance a sociological argument for the consideration of continuity and everyday registers of meaning as a way of understanding change – both to place and in young people’s lives. The focus on a place which has undergone significant material, economic and landscape change enables the argument to be developed in relation to the transformation of communities and post-industrial economies. The article thus explores some of the connectivities between young people, locality, and (both imagined and real) biographical and material changes.