70 Pages

Agriculture Integrated

IF we are sincere we will admit that, in our discussions of town and country planning, we have almost forgotten agriculture as such. It was put in the category of “ preservation ”, but it was not considered as an integral, and indeed complementary part, of town planning. Now, under pressure of war, we turn to the land, expecting it to produce automatically and at once a considerably larger portion of our food requirements than in peace-time. We are apt to forget that our neglect of agriculture in peace-time inevitably produces a situation where the farmers have neither the experience nor the technical equipment necessary for such a task. When the demobilisation comes we shall turn to the land once more, expecting it to absorb men released from the forces ; but again we shall probably forget that the structure of rural settlement cannot be interspersed with “ subsistence holdings ” without seriously endangering the whole fabric of national planning. Thus, the land has been regarded as something to which one should turn in times of crises ; and it is still being looked at by many people as first and foremost a suitable place of recreation or as an outlet for their romantic sentimentalism. In reality, agriculture, even in such a highly industrialised country as Great Britain, is a very different proposition. If we fail to understand this fact we cannot expect to put national planning on a firm basis. Industry and agriculture are socially and economically interdependent ; and both together produce what we need.