Download The Development of Modern Agriculture: British Farming since by J. Martin PDF

By J. Martin

This hugely readable and updated background presents an informative critique of the reasons and effects of the trendy agricultural revolution, because the agricultural melancholy of the inter-war interval. This comprises comparing the influence of the second one global battle, the post-war medical and technological revolutions and the metamorphosis within the function of the kingdom. It additionally examines the effect of the typical Agricultural coverage and the newer makes an attempt to rationalize creation. The booklet presents the fundamental historical past for an aim appreciation of recent agricultural development.

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Farmers who owned their holdings were no longer subject to rigid tenancy agreements, which dictated the balance of arable and pasture on individual farms. This flexibility was extended to tenant-farmers following the 1923 Agriculture Act. The occupational classification of being a farmer was far from homogeneous and not always pursued full-time. In 1938, according to calculations made by Astor and Rowntree, there were 300000 full-time farmers in Great Britain, in addition to 80000 part-time and spare-time farmers, whose main income was derived from non-agricultural work.

L24 Compared with horses, however, steam engines were expensive and difficult to use. 125 The initial capital outlay for tractors was much less and they facilitated the extensive use of semi-skilled labour. 126 Tractors and their ancillary 34 TlJe Developmellt of Modem Agriwlture equipment were more productive than horses, allowing farmers to take advantage of good weather and to speed up field operations. Prior to the war the government had limited insight into the extent of agricultural mechanization.

One of the exceptional features of farming was the contribution made by the farmer and his family to the total labour force. Even in 1931, excluding the occupier, spouse and domestic servants, there were more than 550000 regular male agricultural workers, in addition to 64000 regular female workers and nearly lOO 000 casual and part-time workers. 49 The workforce was characterized by fairly rigid status distinctions between labourers and employers, as well as between different types of workers such as labourers and more skilled craftsmen.

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