After been given the assignment I started to make mind maps on the given topics and the 3 which I had the most ideas for and was interested in the most was city regeneration, rural life and agriculture.
For city regeneration I was interested in how since the 1960’s industry has moved out of the city and moved abroad due to cheaper imports and raw materials and the effects this left on the city. The closure of these industries which the city was built upon, which provided employment for thousands of people in the city meant that once the industry fell into decline this left all of these people unemployed. The consequences of this mass employment meant that areas to fall into states of disrepair and crime rates increased. In turn this also had a knock on effect on the city centre.
One of my ideas was to explore how the mass unemployment lead to many of the shops to close down and how the availability of cheap land on the outskirts of the city lead to the building of large out of town shopping centres and industrial sites. The cheaper land meant that retail space was also cheaper so many of the shops and businesses left the city centre and moved out of town. The quicker road links, reduced congestion and availability of parking spaces lead to more and more people starting to shop in these out of town centres. In turn the high street fell into a further state of decline. I think it would be interesting to see what types of shops remained and how this affected the people who own the shops as I believe that many of the larger retailers would of moved out of the city whereas smaller family businesses would of remained.
After studying this topic in geography last year I am increasingly aware of the negative effects these large developments have on the natural environment and habitats and this is also something I wanted to potentially explore further.
In conjunction with this, my main idea for this topic was to explore how industrial cities across the UK are encouraging people back into the city through regeneration programs and how this is changing peoples shopping habits. I was also particularly interested in how all these developments are effecting the environment and nature and how green belts and wildlife corridors are being incorporated into these regeneration programs.