Herefordshire in the Age of Revolution 1760-1830

Ref: C3126114

For the first time in its history the agricultural products of Herefordshire enriched the landowners and farmers of the county. Corn-land was enclosed, waste colonised and forest cleared. All over the county there was a 'great re-building' in brick and stone. A developing sense of self-consciousness about the character of the Herefordshire countryside gave rise to the Picturesque Movement and romantic parks and gardens were planted throughout the county. But the times were not good for the lower classes and from the 1790s enclosure riots, raids on the market place and soup kitchens became a regular feature of rural life. The Corn Laws accentuated the problem and the middle classes fearing social disintegration and inspired by evangelicalism, began to take measures to tame rural society. The libertarianism of the Georgian elite was replaced by Victorian discipline and godliness, This transition will form the heart of this course and will be demonstrated through a variety disciplines.

Course aim

The course will explore the social, economic and cultural history of Herefordshire during a particularly dynamic period, which saw the passing of the Georgian consensus and its replacement with Victorian social fragmentation.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners
  • This course is for improvers
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Have an understanding of a discrete period of history in a discrete location
  • Understand how a rural society, hitherto with a strong provincial character responded to theIndustrial Revolution and the French Wars
  • Be familiar with the key issues of English society in this period e.g.changes in agriculture, industrialisation, social mobility, impact of war taxation, Corn Laws, non-conformity, the Picturesque, neo-classicism etc.
  • Reflect upon the cultural artefacts of the period e.g. buildings, landscapes,paintings, churches, civic improvement etc
  • Be able to dicuss some of the challenging interpretaions of the period e.g. class war, evangelicalism, radicalism

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning
  • You will be expected to carry out a range of activities in your own time

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • It would be helpful if you had access to the internet (Mobile phone, tablet or computer at home or through a library etc.)
  • A reading list will be provided and pl;aces to visit highlighted.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

Download full course information sheet

Herefordshire in the Age of Revolution 1760-1830


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  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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