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Title: Community, self-help and mutual aid : friendly societies and the parish welfare system in rural Oxfordshire, 1834-1918
Author: Morley, Shaun Philip
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis examines welfare provision in rural Oxfordshire after the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act. The county had little industrial development, remained largely agricultural in nature, and the region had been perceived as a backwater of friendly society development. This thesis rectifies that view and places Oxfordshire as an important component of the movement with its independent nature and early rejection of affiliated order branches that emanated from urbanized and industrialized areas. There is no evidence of impetus given to friendly society formation after the implementation of the new poor law with the general increase in societies continuing. However, the relationship with poor law administration changed. A case study of Stonesfield demonstrates how the friendly society became the heart of village life and was integral to self help and support for the poor. A wider view is taken of welfare provision, with detailed assessment of a range of welfare instruments, such as coal and clothing clubs, soup kitchens, and medical clubs, together with an appraisal of their geographical spread. The range of welfare instruments available is compared to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Need, a model of human motivation. The case study of Whitchurch provides an in-depth assessment of one parish welfare system where after 1834 at least nine stands of welfare were available at all times to the poor who held a degree of selection in what was an increasingly a consumer market. The thesis is underpinned throughout by the use of extensive primary source material.
Supervisor: Tiller, Kate Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Economic and Social History ; Friendly Societies ; Friendly Society ; Welfare ; Social Welfare ; Welfare System ; Oxfordshire ; Clubs ; Philanthropy ; Parish ; Coal Club ; Clothing Club ; Soup Kitchen ; Medical Aid Club ; Nursing Association ; Stonesfield ; Whitchurch