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Exploring the current and future role of market towns in servicing their hinterlands: A case study of Alnwick in the North East of England

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Neil Adrian Powe, Tim Shaw


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Faced with the problems of access, distance and low population density, the provision of quality services to rural areas is inherently difficult. Although the role of market towns in alleviating problems in the provision of rural services has been given little consideration within the academic literature, they are currently being targeted by UK government policy. Using a case of the hinterland of Alnwick, a market town in the North East of England, this paper explores the current and future role of market towns in servicing their hinterlands. The results suggest a mutual dependence between market town services and hinterland residents and that the continuation of this relationship depends on market towns taking advantage of demographic trends in rural areas. Faced with changing demographics and the wider use of the Internet, potential is identified for 'clawing-back' trade from larger urban areas and creating an enhanced role for market towns. Extending the sense of belonging beyond the boundaries of the town itself will also be important in increasing patronage of town services. © 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Powe NA, Shaw T

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Rural Studies

Year: 2004

Volume: 20

Issue: 4

Pages: 405-418

ISSN (print): 0743-0167

ISSN (electronic): 1873-1392

Publisher: Pergamon


DOI: 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2004.07.003


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