6 FEBRUARY 1942, Page 11


IF anyone wishes for a picture of the new era in British farming let him visit the centre from which the County Agricultural Committee exercises its functions. He will find there a great collection of expensive farm machinery, including the immense harvester-threshers that came from the spacious corn-belts of North America. He will find first-class repair shops, manned by expert engineers, and he will find, when the day's work is over, a peripatetic staff, including young women tractor-drivers. One of the activities of the moment is the mechanical separation of the thresher from the harvester and the sending out of that moiety. of the machine to the local farms. At this attractive county station exists, as it seems to me, a fruitful compromise between the two warring—indeed angrily warring—schools of farming philosophy : the inhumans, or believers in large-scale highly-mechanised farms, and the senti- mentalists, who believe in such family farms as are the standard unit over a good part of Western England. The county centre can, and now does, give the small, ill-equipped farmer the benefit of the best machinery, and the yeoman and craftsman need not be sacrificed. The lion may lie down with the lamb ; even Sir Daniel Hall and Mr. Massingham join hands.