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Title: The historical archaeology of post-medieval water supply in Oxfordshire
Author: Hind, Jill
ISNI:       0000 0004 0330 1159
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2014
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Surprisingly, clean mains water has only been universally available to the population of Oxfordshire since the second half of the 20th century. This thesis explores the different methods by which water was obtained between the end of the medieval period and the establishment of the contemporary water companies; it shows how archaeological remains can inform understanding of how different groups lived and interacted during that period. It attempts for the first time to catalogue water supply features within the county, having 910 entries to date. Patterns emerging from the data have been used to suggest themes for further study. Statistics and GIS mapping have demonstrated that the availability and quality of water, including the incidence of early holy and healing wells, are dominated firstly by geology and then by differences between the social classes and between urban and rural areas. Themes explored include the relationship between water and disease, whether water supplies differ between ‘open’ and ‘closed’ parishes, the evolution of holy wells into spas, water in leisure activities, its association with memorials and changing attitudes to hygiene. The thesis also examines the various designation systems in place for protecting historic monuments, the level of recording of water features on local and national lists of monuments and how appropriate this framework is for helping the conservation of a valuable resource.
Supervisor: Griffiths, David W. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Archeology ; water supply ; Oxfordshire ; historical archaeology