From Punt to Plough

A History of the Fens

Author: Rex Sly

Publisher: The History Press

ISBN: 0750954159

Category: History

Page: 160

View: 6925

The counties of Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk and Peterborough City Council all lay claim to parts of the Fens. Since Roman times mankind, by his ingenuity, hard work and determination has increased the land mass in this area by one third of the size. It is the largest plain in the British Isles, covering an area of nearly three-quarters of a million acres, and is unique to the UK. The fen people know the area as marsh (land reclaimed from the sea) and fen (land drained from flooding rivers running from the uplands). The Fens are unique in having more miles of navigable waterways than anywhere else in the UK. Mammoth drainage schemes during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, undertaken primarily by Dutch engineers such as Sir Cornelius Vermuyden and Sir Philibert Vernatti, changed the landscape forever - but it could be said that the Fens were not truly drained until the twenteith century, with improvements being carried out even to this day. Rex Sly's book draws on his many years of research, and his knowledge of and love for this unique area of England shine through on every page.

The Draining of the Fens

Author: H. C. Darby

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107402980

Category: Science

Page: 362

View: 2315

The text is ambitious in scope, reflecting the author's position as a historical geographer, and covers a broad range of disciplinary perspectives, ranging from geology to socio-economic analysis. Numerous illustrative figures are contained, including maps, diagrams and photographs of the area, and a bibliography is also provided.

Fenland Families

Author: Rex Sly

Publisher: Sutton Publishing

ISBN: 9780750943277

Category: Fens, The (England)

Page: 166

View: 3460

The Fens remained a remote area until the advent of the railways in the 1860s, but even when transport links improved many of the long-established Fen families stayed put for the next 100 years, wedded as they were to a way of life that was unique to this part of England. Now, in the early years of the twenty-first century, there are still businesses, trades and professions throughout the Fens that have been in the same family for generations - and are still thriving, despite pressures from the modern world of multinationals, cheap imports and online shopping. Well-know local author Rex Sly, whose own family has been living in the Fens since the seventeenth century, has researched the history of Fenland families, names that everyone who lives in the region will recognise. He has also interviewed many family members and visited their homes, shops and businesses to build up a picture that encompasses not only life in this unique area over the last few centuries but also the thriving life of the Fens today.

Soil in Their Souls

A History of Fenland Farming

Author: Rex Sly

Publisher: History PressLtd

ISBN: 9780752457338

Category: History

Page: 160

View: 7200

Like many of the families in this book, Rex Sly follows in the footsteps of his ancestors who were also farmers in the Fens. The land was reclaimed by forebears, giving this unique bond between "soil and soul"—each generation wishing to leave their soils as a sustainable inheritance to the next. The variety of crops which are grown has changed little over the past half-century, but the traditional farms have been largely replaced by high-tech agro-businesses. Not all farms in the fens are large, though, and the richness of the soils still enables the small grower to survive in a niche marketplace. The greatest change has been from the grower to the consumers' shopping baskets. The marketing chain has changed from markets and merchants to the vast supermarket network: fast and efficient for the grower and value for money for the public. The corn exchanges which witnessed the rise and fall of agriculture over one and a half centuries of history are now no more than farming monuments. The ever-increasing demands on our soils are of concern to those in the Fens. Each generation is replaceable—fen topsoil is not.

Historical Disaster Experiences

Towards a Comparative and Transcultural History of Disasters Across Asia and Europe

Author: Gerrit Jasper Schenk

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3319491636

Category: Social Science

Page: 436

View: 2614

Historical disaster research is still a young field. This book discusses the experiences of natural disasters in different cultures, from Europe across the Near East to Asia. It focuses on the pre-industrial era and on the question of similarities, differences and transcultural dynamics in the cultural handling of natural disasters. Which long-lasting cultural patterns of perception, interpretation and handling of disasters can be determined? Have specific types of disasters changed the affected societies? What have people learned from disasters and what not? What adaptation and coping strategies existed? Which natural, societal and economic parameters play a part? The book not only reveals the historical depth of present practices, but also reveals possible comparisons that show globalization processes, entanglements and exchanges of ideas and practices in pre-modern times.


The Silt and the Black

Author: Francis Pryor

Publisher: Head of Zeus Ltd

ISBN: 1786692236

Category: History

Page: 352

View: 7153

The Fens is Britain's most distinctive, complex, man-made and least understood landscape. Francis Pryor has lived in, excavated, farmed, walked – and loved – the Fen Country for more than forty years: its levels and drains, its soaring churches and magnificent medieval buildings. In Fenland, he counterpoints the history of the Fenland landscape and its transformation – the great drainage projects that created the Old and New Bedford Rivers, the Ouse Washes and Bedford Levels, the rise of prosperous towns and cities, such as King's Lynn, Cambridge, Peterborough, Boston and Lincoln – with the story of his own discovery of it as an archaeologist. 'Whenever I travel somewhere else, in upland Britain, I find the hills and the horizon are leaning towards me, as if trying to cover me over; to blinker my gaze and stifle my imagination. It's always a huge relief to get back to the its infinite vistas of the Fens.'

The Medieval Fenland

Author: H. C. Darby

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107614988

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 230

View: 6841

This 1940 book, together with its companion volume, constitutes an attempt to outline the changing conditions of a fascinating region. The text is ambitious in scope, reflecting the author's position as a historical geographer, and covers a broad range of disciplinary perspectives, ranging from geology to socio-economic analysis.

Lost Fens

England's Greatest Ecological Disaster

Author: Ian D. Rotherham

Publisher: The History Press

ISBN: 0752492683

Category: History

Page: 208

View: 5436

The Lost Fens is the history of the cultural landscape of the Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire, and Yorkshire Fenlands from the Humber and the Vale of York, to Norfolk. The book draws together the story of changing landscapes, lost cultures and ways of life, and the wildlife that has gone, too. This story of destruction is the most dramatic example of ecological destruction in our history. Between 6,000 and 10,000 square kilometres of wetland present in the 1600s, was almost entirely obliterated by 1900. Gone are the vast flocks of wetland birds that filled the evening skies in winter, the frozen wetlands and the fen skaters of the winter, and the abundant Black Terns or breeding wading birds of the summer months. This is the history of a landscape, of a region, and of its people, long since passed away. It is a remarkable tale and, above all, a history of a lost ecology.

This Land is Our Land

The Struggle for Britain's Countryside

Author: Marion Shoard

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781856750646

Category: Conservation of natural resources

Page: 521

View: 3438

This volume shows how ramblers, road protesters and country lovers are coming together to challenge the rural land ownership regime. It argues that the urban population should use its democratic strength to deprive rural landowners of their grip on the countryside. first of a series of forthcoming challenges to landowner control of the countryside. It was followed by the 100,000-strong protest of the landowners' Countryside Alliance at Hyde Park in July 1997. This work on the politics of rural land ownership, appears on the eve of the second reading of the fox-hunting Bill. the last 1000 years, and analyzes the current ownership of the countryside. It unveils a radical programme of action, setting out a new social contract through which landowners and the people would share control of the countryside.

Country Life

Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A


Category: Country life

Page: N.A

View: 4668


Fenland Pumping Engines

Author: K. S. G. Hinde

Publisher: N.A


Category: Fens, The (England)

Page: 224

View: 3452

'Fenland Pumping Engines' details the many former drainage engines which powered the wheels and pumps which kept the fens free from flood. The book contains much little known information and photographs, some rare.

A Prince of the Captivity

Author: John Buchan

Publisher: House of Stratus

ISBN: 1842327860

Category: Fiction

Page: 346

View: 3968

This is the epic story of one man's courage. Adam Melfort is an officer and a gentleman. A brilliant career lies ahead of him until he is imprisoned for a crime he did not commit. Afterwards, Adam embarks on daring missions in the service of his country. Dangerous work behind enemy lines in World War I and espionage in 1920s Germany are adventures he bravely undertakes.

His Natural Life

Author: Marcus Andrew Hislop Clarke,Lurline Stuart,Michael Roe,Elizabeth Webby

Publisher: Univ. of Queensland Press

ISBN: 9780702231773

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 686

View: 4513

His Natural Life has retained Australian classic status for over one hundred years. Scarcely ever out of print since first written during the early 1870s, it has provided successive generations with a vivid account of a brutal phase of colonial life. The main focus of this great convict novel is the complex interaction between those in power and those who suffer, made meaningful because of its hero's struggle against the destructiveness of his wrongful imprisonment. While much of the story is necessarily grim, Marcus Clarke has used elements of romance, incidents of family life and passages of scenic description to both relieve and give emphasis to the tragedy that forms its heart.