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Title: Defence development in the British Virgin Islands : 1530-1815
Author: Kent , Michael D.
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2009
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The ability of Great Britain to build what became the largest empire the world has yet known was largely influenced by the Industrial Revolution which began in the late eighteenth-century. A variety of constituents were responsible for creating the phenomena which changed the face of British history, not least the economic remittances made by the British West Indian colonies. By the end of the eighteenth-century, William Pitt estimated that four-fifths of all income received from the British overseas colonies came from the British West Indies, which once deposited into the treasury contributed significantly towards building the infrastructure which industrialised the nation. Throughout the century which spawned this remarkable change in British social and economic organisation, wars were fought which inevitably became fiercely contested in the West Indian colonies because of the revenue each produced for their respective countries. In order to protect this vital source of income, every island created a defence network which although terrestrially based, was essentially focused on the surrounding host water mass in order to prevent invasion and subsequent plunder. It will plausibly be argued in the closing chapter of this thesis that had these various defence networks not been constructed in the British West Indian colonies, the revenue which helped fuel the Industrial Revolution would have been compromised and British history could have been different. The following study traces the evolution and effectiveness of the defence network created in the British Virgin Islands, with an initiatory examination of defence development in the British Leeward region as a whole.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available