Listen to the programme on the Radio 4 website.

Making History

On Tuesday 10th May, Dr David Harvey appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Making History programme (broadcast 3pm 10/05/11).

In a discussion about the use of hedgerows in nineteenth century agricultural improvements, David focussed on the beech hedges of Exmoor. Following the purchase of the Exmoor Forest in 1818, the Knight Family transformed the high moorland of Exmoor through planting hedges, liming the soil and constructing roads, farms and settlements as part of a large scale agricultural experiment. In many ways, therefore, the iconic and seemingly ‘essential’ landscape of Exmoor should be seen as a product of thoroughly modern attitudes, through the use of cutting edge technologies and innovations of industrial farming during the nineteenth century. As aesthetic judgement also appears to be suggested, since the beech tree is not the most obvious candidate for such hedging operations due to it being quite ‘accident prone’; it doesn’t like it too wet, or too dry, and it breaks easily in high winds.

Listen to the programme on the Radio 4 website.

Date: 17 May 2011

Read more University News