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Farm Surveys 1941-43:
National Archive (Reference: MAF 32/1106/421)

Thomas Slinger Atkinson (1901-1969)
© Thoralby Through Time
Women's Land Army Recruting Poster

Courtesy of Heather Percival, née Atkinson.


The photograph above shows Thomas Slinger Atkinson at High Green Farm. During the time of the National Farm Survey, he lived at Gayling Farm, with his wife Mary and young daughter Heather Ann (1938-2007). 

The poster was produced by the government during the war to encourage women to help the war effort by joining the 'Women's Land Army'. They were greatly needed as a labour force because most of the men were away from home in the armed forces.

Horse and trailer, High Green Farm, Thor
© Thoralby Through Time

Courtesy of Heather Percival née Atkinson, who was born at Gayling Farm.

The above photograph shows a horse and trailer outside High Green Farm, Thoralby, the home of Tommy Atkinson's father and elder brothers. Tommy was farming at Gayling during the time of the National Farm Survey and the survey shows how important horses were. On his farm the survey shows that he had six horses, four of which were used for farm work and two were being bred for sale. The farmhouse, which was about 3½ miles to the west of the village of Thoralby, had no running water and no electricity. Water was taken from the stream and light would probably have been provided by paraffin lamps, unlike the majority of the houses in the village of Thoralby, which had both piped water and electric light, the latter provided by Thoralby Mill.

Below is a summary of the Individual Farm Surveys for Thoralby undertaken on 4th June 1941. For contextual information about the National Farm Survey see "Farm Survey" under the "Thoralby" drop-down menu at the top of the page. The column showing Wartime Crops Grown lists mainly crops grown for animal fodder, but there are a few that weren't (see the table below). In the Area column, R.G. means Rough Grazing. 

A more detailed survey of each individual farm was undertaken on 19th February 1942. For information about individual farms, see the list on the 'Individual Farm Surveys' page, where they are listed by Surname of Occupier.

The acreage in the table below is from the Agricultural Farm Census taken on 4th June, 1941 which in some cases may be different from that given in The Farm Survey of 19th February 1942, as ownership of land changed.

* Grange Farm was at Newbiggin. The Dinsdale's ran all three farms as one holding (see Newbiggin Summary, for Grange Farm details).

All the above people can also be viewed in more detail in the 1939 ID Register for Thoralby.

Below is a photograph of my grandparent's farm, No. 421/20 in the above farm survey, and also copies of the original documents from the Farm Survey. Due to copyright restrictions, only transcriptions are available for the remaining 22 farms.

Holmeside Farm, Thoralby
© Thoralby Through Time

Holmeside Farm, Thoralby, courtesy of F. & M.E. Snaith.


The above photograph of Holmeside Farm, Thoralby, shows the farmhouse and the buildings described below in the Farm Survey. The two little detached sheds in the field to the right are the hen huts, housing the 38 fowl mentioned in the survey below. The cows were milked in the 'cow house', the building attached to the right of the farmhouse. The three sows and one horse were kept in the detached 'cart-house' to the front and right of the house. 

Below are copies of the completed Farm Survey Forms for my grandfather, Frank Snaith of Holmeside Farm.  (Reproduced courtesy of the National Archives, Reference: MAF 32/1106/421/20). 


They provide not only an insight into what crops and livestock were being produced, but also the amenities available to the farmhouses. The majority within the village had piped water and electric and public lighting, provided by Thoralby Mill. 

Transcripts of all the individual farms for Thoralby can be viewed at: Thoralby - Farm Survey

1. Agricultural Census Form: 4th June 1941

Frank Snaith, Holmeside Farm, Agriculural Census Form
© Thoralby Through Time

2. Reverse of Agricultural Census Form 

Frank Snaith, Holmeside Farm Reverse of Agricultural Census Form
© Thoralby Through Time

3. Labour, Motive Power and Tenure Form: 4th June 1941

Frank Snaith, Holmeside Farm Labour, Motive Power and Tenure Form
© Thoralby Through Time

4. Additional Questions for Market Gardens: 4th June 1941 

Frank Snaith, Holmeside Farm Additional Questions for Market Gardens
© Thoralby Through Time

Although not applicable locally, the above form was included with the documentation sent to all twenty-three farms in Thoralby, however details are not transcribed for Thoralby farms as it is not applicable.

5. Main Farm Survey Form: 19th February 1942

Frank Snaith, Holmeside Farm, Main Farm Survey Form
© Thoralby Through Time

 6. Reverse of main Farm Survey Form

Frank Snaith, Holmeside Farm Reverse of main Farm Survey Form
© Thoralby Through Time

 Transcripts of the forms for all 23 farms in Thoralby can be seen at Farm Survey.

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