Clive Aslet

Villages of Britain

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Villages of Britain is thehistory of the countryside, told through five hundred of its mostnoteworthy settlements. Many of Britain's villages are known for theirloveliness, of course, but their role in shaping the nation over thecenturies is relatively untold, drowned out by the metropolitan bias ofhistory.A consummate storyteller, Clive Aslet deftly weaves the worlds ofagriculture, politics, the arts, industry, folklore, science, ecology,fashion and religion into one irresistible volume. The Bedfordshireworks that a century ago manufactured half a billion bricks a year; theCheshire municipality striving to become the country's firstcarbon-neutral community; the Derbyshire estate where the cottagesrepresent the gamut of European architecture; the Gloucestershirecommunity founded by Tolstoyans, who still live by anarchic principles;the Leicestershire town where pub walls are embedded with Jurassic-erafossils; the Morayshire settlement where Hogmanay is celebrated elevendays late; the Pembrokeshire fishing hamlet that inspired Dylan Thomas;the Somerset village that was built on the back of the trade inPeruvian bird droppings; the Suffolk village that is rejectingmodernity by reconstructing a windmill for grinding flour; the Surreywoodland that fosters Europe's most ancient trees – all these areplaces that have made a unique contribution to the narrative of thiscountry.Follow Clive Aslet in visiting all five hundred villages, and you willhave experienced the history of these islands from a uniquely ruralperspective.
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1,164 printed pages


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