The romantic imagery of village England and the prominence that this commands in English cultural identity is well known. Yet just how accurate is this notion of the rural idyll in which the organic nature of village life was gradually undermined, and destroyed, by social and economic factors? Trevor Wild's engaging new book explores the evolution of 'village England' from earliest times until the present. Drawing upon both contemporary accounts and recent scholarship he provides an engaging andrevealing account of the major transformations affecting the English village. Of particular interest is the book's coverage of the more recent past, with the whittling away of the great estates, the appearance of such institutions as the village hall, and the development of alternative systems of power such as the councils. In a final chapter the author u for an inclusive approach to village history in which all groups of people have played a part and every building - not just the picturesque cottage,ancient church and squire's mansion - have significance. Village England will appeal to both a general readership and to scholars in history and geography.
A Social History of the Countryside