What is landscape history?

We thought it might be quite useful to set out what a landscape history is, because it is not necessarily as obvious as it appears.  Clearly we will be interested in telling the story of the landscape itself–here specifically the story of the construction of the M1 corridor as it cuts a swathe through Leicestershire and the service station itself.  Taking a long view we will look at what was there before their construction and how they have consequently effected the landscape ever since.  In this sense, then, landscape history is simply a history of the landscape, or an investigation of how people have shaped the landscape over time. 

But we can also think about it the other way round.  If people shape landscapes, then landscapes shapes people.  How did the Leicestershire landscape influence the building of the motorway and its service station?  What impact has its construction through Leicestershire had on the lives of its residents or those simply passing through?  How has the motorway and its service station contributed to the social and economic vibrancy of the county?  In short, how has this major artery, conceived in the 1950s, contributed to society past and present?


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