The role of pre-retirement (50-64 years) mobility in the repopulation of rural areas has received relatively little academic scrutiny from geographers in the European context. This paper deploys the concept of a ‘retirement transition’ (Bures, 2007) to examine how the life-course intersects with attitudes and motives traditionally associated with moves into rural areas. The retirement transition concept refers to the attitudinal and behavioural changes affecting pre-retirement age groups and assumes that the expectation of retirement acts as a catalyst for lifestyle change, including a change of residence. Such migration is commonly associated with rural areas including peripheral areas experiencing demographic decline and which are, connectedly, socially and economically fragile. Using empirical data from a household survey conducted in rural Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, this paper examines whether a ‘retirement transition’ can explain processes of repopulation in peripheral rural areas. It analyses how motives for pre-retirement migration cohere and diverge from other age-cohorts and, through a case study analysis of life-narrative interviews with in-migrants and non-migrants, identifies in what ways socio-cultural expectations and experiences can be important in shaping the processes by which people identify (or dis-identify) with place. This analysis sheds some light on the possible implications of in-migration for the socio-cultural sustainability of remote rural communities.
|Publication status||Published - Aug 2010|
|Event||Annual conference of the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers (2009) - Manchester, United Kingdom|
Duration: 24 Jul 2007 → 28 Aug 2009
|Conference||Annual conference of the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers (2009)|
|Period||24/07/07 → 28/08/09|
Stockdale, A., MacLeod, M., & Philip, L. J. (2010). Retiring to rural areas: evidence from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Abstract from Annual conference of the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers (2009), Manchester, United Kingdom.