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The Enclosure Acts Empty The Enclosure Acts

on Sat Jan 25, 2020 6:07 pm
The Enclosure Acts of the 18th century created a process whereby through Acts of Parliament, previously commonly held lands known as "The Commons" could be enclosed by landowners.

This process later spread elsewhere including to Ireland where landowners, like in Britain would replace their farm hands and agricultural labourers with sheep and cattle. This was particularly disastrous for Scotland as it saw the mass depopulation of the Highlands region during the Highland Clearances.

Across Ireland and Britain, millions of former farm labourers became homeless and landless. This led to within Britain a mass exodus to the cities beginning in the early 19th century. The millions of former farm workers who became landless and homeless as a result of the Enclosure Acts would become the factory and mill workers of a rapidly industrialising 19th century society.

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