4 AUGUST 1939, Page 18

The Best Settlers The best of all forms of Empire

migration or of the return to the land is found in the Fairbridge Schools which have just published the record of the year's advances. There are now four of these schools. A great majority of the boys come from our large towns and almost all absorb a desire for work on the land. A great many become what we should call small-holders. Western Australia, where the first farm-school was started, has for very many years appealed peculiarly to my imagination. The trees there were taller and finer than in other places, the creeks and inlets had larger fish ; fruit and corn and stock all flourished. The flowers were as gorgeous as any I ever saw in the wild. North of that idyllic stretch of country that lies between the snug harbour of Albany and the oak trees of Perth are much vaster harbours; and rocks of good ironstone descend directly into deep waters near the oyster fisheries, where the pearls and mother-of-pearl come from. I have some of these oyster shells ; they are nearly a foot across. In this spacious and well-watered country, lying at the edge of a waterless and treeless plain, live a few thousand people inhabiting an area larger than Germany, France and England. It would have been much more thinly inhabited but for the discovery of gold just outside its borders. The Auri Sacra Fames appealed to a world deaf and blind to much more valuable and permanent and wholesome forms of wealth. The Fairbridge Farm School has a finer philosophy, worth the support of every friend of our Empire.