2001 Foot and Mouth Epidemic in North Cumbria

The 2001 foot and mouth disease outbreak had enormous effects on the economic, social and political life of rural areas in the UK. This research project, which was funded by the Department of Health, produced evidence about the human health and social consequences of the epidemic.

The study recruited a standing panel of 54 local people from the worst affected area (North Cumbria). This panel wrote weekly diaries over a period of 18 months describing how their lives had been affected by the crisis and the process of recovery they observed around them. This community-based approach cast the panel members as the 'experts' in the study. They contributed more than 3,000 weekly diaries which form part of the anonymised archive held at the ESDS Qualidata. The paper copies are archived with consent at Lancaster University Library Special Collections.

The research findings are relevant for understanding what forms of support people need both in disaster situations and in the recovery period. They are also relevant for the development of rural health policy more generally.

Items from the study may be used by appointment only.