HC Deb 29 July 1924 vol 176 cc1888-9

asked the Minister of Agriculture if he will estimate for the years 1913 and 1923, respectively, the acreage of arable land and the acreage under grass in Great Britain, and the numbers, respectively, of farmers and farm labourers employed in the industry in each of these years?


As the reply contains a number of figures, I propose, with the hon. Member's permission, to circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Following is the reply:

The area of arable land in Great Britain in 1913 on holdings of over one acre was 14,360,000 acres, and of permanent grass 17,567,000 acres; the figures for 1923 were 14,479,000 acres and 16,189,000 acres respectively. The number of holdings was 513,000 in 1913 and 488,000 in 1923, and while in a number of cases two or more holdings were in the same occupation, the number of holdings may be taken as a close approximation to the number of occupiers. The number of workers, according to the returns furnished by the occupiers, employed on the 4th June, 1913, was 628,000 regular workers, and 112,000 casual workers; the figures for 1923 being 725,000 and 169,000 respectively. I should explain that the figures of the number of workers are not quite comparable for these two years. In 1913 the figures do not include members of the occupier's family; those for 1923 do not include the occupier and his wife, but include any other members of the family working on the holding.


asked the Minister of Agriculture how many farmers in Great Britain are owner-occupiers of the whole of their farms; and how ninny are exclusively tenants?


The total number of holdings of over one acre in extent in Great Britain in 1923, owned or mainly owned by the occupiers was 96,275, and the number rented or mainly rented was 391,532.