An article in today's Times suggests that seven centuries ago the distance between one's birthplace and one's gravestone was
133 miles; now, seven centuries later the distance is 237 miles. In other words they suggest that most people want to return to near to their native county to die.
Also, interestingly, he points out that in areas where there is little or no instance of immigration, and where folk therefore have less contact with foreigners, there is much more fear of immigration. And yet, Dr Schich of the University of Texas at Dallas, points out - if we were to have our genomes sequenced we would find that most of us are very closely related to most other Europeans.
The farmer and I did a quick count of how many people in our little village have lived here all of their lives. It was under twenty we thought (we might have got it a bit higher if we had thought about it a bit longer). The rest of them had moved away - some not far (married someone further up the Dale) but many had moved to where there was work. There is no longer work here on farms like there used to be and folk have to move where the work is.
As for me, I have moved around a bit. Lincolnshire (three different places), Lichfield, Wolverhampton, and two different places in our little village. But that is nothing compared with many of the folk I know. But I do know that on the rare occasions that I return to my roots, I have no desire to return on a permanent basis. It is lovely to meet the few friends I still have there, but I have moved on. My belief is that you can't go back.
I think several things govern folk moving from here - work, marriage outside the area, house prices - all play their part.
Is there anyone amongst those reading this blog who still lives in the community where he/she was born?