Conflict and Change in the Countryside
It is impossible to say unambiguously which are the truly rural areas of Britain. There are plenty of indicators to use, such as land-use, population density, distance from towns, and the degree of economic reliance upon agriculture, but in the end, two conclusions always emerge. First, there are peaks, troughs and gradients of rurality, not clear breakpoints. And second, each indicator tells a confusingly different tale and composite indicators tend to fudge the issue. Nevertheless Figure 11.1 sets out one possible definition, and it is broadly with the characteristics of the areas shown that this chapter is concerned.
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