A MODEL OF GEOGRAPHICAL CHANGE ILLUSTRATED BY SELECTED CHANGES IN BUCKS IN GENERAL, AND FENNY STRATFORD IN PARTICULAR. 1760-1850.

Newbury, Paul A (1977). A MODEL OF GEOGRAPHICAL CHANGE ILLUSTRATED BY SELECTED CHANGES IN BUCKS IN GENERAL, AND FENNY STRATFORD IN PARTICULAR. 1760-1850. The Open University.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.21954/ou.ro.0000fc96

Abstract

The aim is to evolve a model which will illustrate the integral processes of geographical change, one capable of application to various situations. It is necessary to give adequate consideration to changes of spatial significance, as well as to the basic dimension of change in time. It is also important to take into account the complementary contributions to change from economic, social, and political forces on one hand, and man as a thinking and active agent of change on the other.

Towards these ends the initial step has been to represent the stochastic model in diagrammatical form for more convenient manipulation. It has been tested against information for Buckinghamshire, and particularly Fenny Stratford, I76O-I85O. This small market town experienced an interesting and varied selection of changes which also affected Buckinghamshire as a whole, and its adequate documentation was also a recommendation.

In order to simplify the model for practical purposes only four out of many interrelated aspects of change have been considered:- population, agricultural land holding and land-use, settlement, communications and trade, and class structures. In addition change is represented as operating through consecutive cycles of change within prescribed units of time. In reality such repetitive cycles of change would move towards completion at different rates, instead of operating concurrently within such prescribed units of time.

Despite simplification, the model demonstrates the way external economic pressures modified land-holding patterns, which in turn modified social class structures and relations between classes; it also shows the Grand Junction Canal to have been the major influence upon Buckinghamshire's, particularly Fenny Stratford's, economic development at this period.

It is hoped to develop the model towards increased authenticity and a wider range of application, through application to comparative studies elsewhere, in order to illustrate not only changes in these different situations, but the integral processes of geographical change themselves.

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