14 FEBRUARY 1941, Page 3

Town and Country Life The standard of living of agricultural

workers, when all allowances have been made for extras, is still considerably below that of industrial workers. That fact is clearly shown by the report of the cost-of-living inquiry carried out by the Ministry of Labour in respect of 1,491 agricultural households, which should be read in conjunction with the similar report on industrial households. The inquiry took place in 1937-38, and is therefore true only of pre-war conditions. Since then from 9s. to 17s. a week has been added to the agricultural Worker's wage, making a substantial difference. The family consisted on an average of 3.8 persons, of whom 2.4 were 18 years of age or over, and Et were under 14. The number of wage-earners averaged 1.6 per household, the total expendi- ture of which was 57s. 4d. The industrial family, of approxi- mately the same size, spent 85s. Some allowance to the advantage of the agricultural family must be made in respect of its lower rent and rates, and the fact that it consumed some food that it produced itself or was provided for it. But in _ispite of this the country family had less to spend on food, uothing, fuel and other items, and in respect of expenditure on pleasures it fell far behind Here is reason enough for the old drift from the country to the town.