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7 November 201810:30

Please come, sit and share my view

Communities in general, and rural communities in particular, punctuate their lives with events that bring people together and celebrate aspects of culture. Rural communities in the United Kingdom (UK) are no exception and there is a heavily populated calendar of rural events, celebrating touchstones such as farming, hunting and horses. Thus there are numerous agricultural shows, game fairs, and horse events such as gymkhanas and horse shows. Research with regard to events such as these has been limited. There is a feeling amongst many people in the rural community that the UK is increasingly dominated by urban, as opposed to rural, concerns and that this cultural influence is changing the nature of many rural events. This paper aims to explore and articulate some of these concerns. In order to do this an autoethnographic approach has been adopted as a method, utilising logocentrism as an ontological lens. I grew up immersed in the culture and traditions of rural England. I was taken hunting and was attending horse and agricultural shows before I could walk. As a young man I worked on farms and helped organise and run rural events. As such I view(ed) the world from a perspective that reflects my cultural upbringing. I find it difficult living in an urban dominated ‘society’ where I consider rural events are increasingly urbanised to a point where the life, past and present, of the countryside becomes a sideshow. This commodification of rural life in the UK is something that has local and also global relevance, though there are ways that event organisers can address some of these concerns. Dr. Sean Beer is a Senior Lecturer in Agriculture at the Faculty of Management, Department of Tourism and Hospitality, Bournemouth University.. Full details
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14 November 201818:30

Can the UK be a world leader? Why a new Environment Act is needed now

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