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The Impact of Enclosure

Enclosure transformed the landscape of Berkshire and had a major impact on farming practice. As part of the New Landscapes project the historian Bethanie Afton was commissioned to carry out a piece of research to describe how enclosure affected four parishes in the north of the county, and in doing so to provide a model for further research elsewhere in the county.

The parishes chosen were Wantage and its neighbours Ardington, East Lockinge and Letcombe Regis. The area was selected because it was broadly typical of the county as a whole and even more so of north-western Berkshire. Just over half of the land area of these parishes was enclosed by Act of Parliament, and almost three-quarters of this enclosure took place during the peak period for Parliamentary enclosure, the first half of the nineteenth century. Substantial evidence survives to enable the story to be pieced together, in the form both of official records (commissioners’ minutes and working papers) and of private estate records (such as maps, deeds, leases, surveys, terriers and correspondence). Finally, because the parishes are long and narrow, stretching up from the clay lands of the Vale of White Horse to the chalk of the downs, it is possible to see how enclosure affected a variety of different landscapes.

Click here to read Dr Afton’s paper (4.5MB .PDF - opens in a new window) >>

Alternatively you may wish to download the individual parts of the paper in Word (.DOC) format:
01 Title Page.doc (20KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
02 Table of Contents.doc (26KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
03 Chapter 1.doc (713KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
04 Chapter 2.doc (626KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
05 Chapter 3.doc (994KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
06 Chapter 4.doc (582KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
07 Chapter 5 a.doc (1.44MB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
08 Chapter 5 b.doc (1.20MB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
09 Chapter 5 c.doc (1.91MB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
10 Appendices.doc (512KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
11 References.doc (131KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>
12 Index.doc (41KB .DOC - opens in a new window) >>


This page was printed from the BRO New Landscapes website on 7/12/2024.