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Welsh migration to England in the nineteenth century.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date07/1983
JournalJournal of Historical Geography
Journal number3
Volume9
Number of pages20
Pages287-306
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Conventional migration theory suggests that rural to urban movement was a one-way once and for all movement which resulted in the severance of ties to a rural homeland and the gradual adoption of an urban lifestyle and culture. Analysis of Welsh migration to English towns in the mid-nineteenth century suggests that by no means all migrants conformed to this stereotype. Whilst Welsh migrants displayed similar characteristics to other rural-urban movers and fitted easily into an urban labour market, they were able to retain many of their rural traditions and customs in an English urban environment. They also maintained close links with Wales whilst some engaged in return migration. Although easily accepted into English urban society, the Welsh were able to live in two culture worlds for much of the nineteenth century. It is suggested that detailed longitudinal studies of other migrant groups will demonstrate diversity in the extent to which rural traditions were subsumed by urban culture in the nineteenth century.