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A geographical study of post-war rural populations in North-East England

Palmer, C. A. (1974) A geographical study of post-war rural populations in North-East England. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



The work may be divided into two parts. The first is concerned with obtaining a geographically significant definition of rurality and applying it to the twenty pre-April 1967 Rural Districts of Northumberland and Durham at the Civil Parish level. A composite index of rurality based upon the four prime geographical factors of population density, land use, employment and situation shows truly rural conditions over much of Northumberland as well as in west Durham and a surprisingly large area of south Durham. The second part establishes the major criteria by which the heterogeneous populations found within the 14/ units derived from the Rural Districts may be categorised. Three major definitional axes are found through multivariate analysis and three unit types established which are characterised by (a) dense population, industry, mining and a near urban situation; (b) remoteness and the predominance of agriculture; (c) high social status. Distinct zones of such units are found : the first type in south-east Northumberland, central and east Durham; the second in west Durham and much of the remainder of Northumberland; the third around the major conurbations and extending down the Lyne valley. The remainder of the work comprises an analysis of the areal variation of individual demographic, social, socio-economic and economic variables both to establish significant distributional features and the nature of any association with the earlier classification, many such links are found. Thus, the industrial/mining type units tend to be characterised by such features as short distance population mobility, high unemployment or overcrowding; the agricultural and remoter rural units by an old age structure, a large number of households with no family unit or little recorded journey to work movement; the high social status units by high sex ratios and a substantial population increase between 1951 and 1971.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Date:1974
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:18 Sep 2013 10:24

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