1915 | Stalham Farmers' Club | Leading speakers from the agricultural industry.

Stalham Farmers 1915


Minutes of a meeting on January 26. There were 28 members present and the president, Mr E G Cubitt was in the chair.

A letter was read from Mrs Gibbs of Smallburgh thanking the club for their sympathy in her bereavement.

Messrs Bussens and Mr JT Mobbs were elected as members by ballot.

Rev MCH Bird proposed the following for election at the next meeting –

Mr H Divers, seconded by Mr J Durrell.

Mr A Neave, seconded by Mr H Barber.

Mr F Gladden, seconded by Mr WP Cubitt.

Mr A Clarke, seconded by Mr Draper.

A letter was read from Mr W Faulke, of Dilham, claiming that he had won the cup for the best whole root crop outright, i.e. once on his home farm and twice on Dilham Hall Farm. The hon secretary who stated that on receipt of this letter he at once communicated with the President, who suggested that the question should be left for the club to decide at the next meeting. Mr T Worts, donor of the cup, kindly consented to this suggestion – upon being put to the ballot a clear majority decided that Mr Faulke was not entitled to the Cup as he had not won it three times on the same farm. Much discussion had previously taken place on the subject. The President clearly pointing out the pros and cons and the members being generally of the opinion that that occupation of more than one farm gave the competitor an unfair advantage over the man who only held one. The Rev Bird proposed that, for the future, this should be a condition of winning the whole root crop cup and this was unanimously agreed to. Whereupon Mr W P Cubitt very honourably pointed out that he had held the Swede Cup under exactly the same conditions as those on which Mr Faulke claimed his cup. He wished to place himself unreservedly in the hands of the members as to whether or no he ought to retain the trophy. Again, after much discussion, it was unanimously agreed that the two cases were not exactly similar. As the competition for this prize had each and every field on a farm to choose from for growing two acres of Swedes, whereas the occupier of one farm only has so such choice in competing for the whole root crop.

Mr Cubitt, therefore, retains his cup. Mr Bird read a report on the analysis of eight samples of mangold sent up to the Cambridge Laboratory (as per minutes of last meeting) and in his explanation of the report, pointed out that it proved the following facts -

1 That both Mr Barber’s and Mr Bygrave’s Yellow Globe and Red Intermediate tallied very closely with the standard analysis for each variety, both as to dry matter and sugar contents.

2 That both Mr Barber’s and Mr Bygrave's roots showed that flat work produces a small percentage more sugar and dry matter per root than baulking, and as a greater weight per acre can be as economically grown under this system, it must undoubtedly be the best.

Mr WP Cubitt read a paper of much interest on the life history of the diamond-backed moth and the methods of contending with its attack upon swedes.

He also touched upon other matters of general agricultural interest, advising the members, both from the patriotic and pecuniary motives, to grow as much wheat as possible this season. Several members having given their past observations and experiences with respect to the diamond-backed moth, it was generally agreed that rolling the young plants, sometimes twice over, in the case of a bad attack, was the only remedy likely to prove effective.

Mr Bird produced a model of a box-like contrivance with greased wings which was used most effectually by the RHS on white turnips last summer as a trap for Turnip beetles, and said that perhaps it might be adjusted as to become equally useful against diamond-backed moths and their caterpillars when drawn over swedes.

The president gave a few explanatory remarks upon the statistical forms of inquiry which had recently been sent out by the government concerning the local supply of agricultural labour and the amount of corn, hay and straw in hand.

With but two dissentients the amount of local agricultural labour available was declared to be adequate.

With thanks for their past services, the club officers were re-elected enbloc, together with the two representatives to the Norfolk Chamber of Agriculture.

An interesting meeting was brought to a close somewhat earlier in the evening than usual owing to the war and the consequent early closing of places of public assembly.


Minutes of a meeting on October 6 at the Railway Hotel, Stalham. The president, Mr EG Cubitt presiding. 18 members present, a few more came in after tea. The minutes of the last meeting were read and confirmed.

The four following new members were duly elected - Mr H Divers, Mr A Neave, Mr F Gladden, and Mr A Clarke.

The Rev Wallis, of Stalham, Mr Pigott, of Sloley, and Mr Banham, of Smallburgh, were proposed for election at the next meeting.

Mr Hudson Barber, Mr J E Draper, and Rev MCH Bird were appointed as root judges.

An unanimous vote of sympathy with the family of the late Mr P Worts, of Sutton, was passed, and the hon secretary was directed to write accordingly to Miss Worts.

The hon secretary reported an adverse balance in the club funds, since his appointment during the absence of Mr G Gibbs of £1 3s 0d, and drew attention to the difficulty of collecting subscriptions owing to the bad attendance of members.

A very able and interesting address on farm work for women by given by Miss F M Burton, of Norwich, which was much appreciated by those present, and Miss CB Duff was duly thanked for bringing her to Stalham.

The lectured pointed out that though there may be no shortage of labour in the district, it is very likely that such a state of things may exist in the spring, and emphasised the necessity of being prepared to meet it. Miss Burton gave instances of the successful employment of women in other parts of the county, not only in dairy work  and the rearing of young cattle but also in the hard labour of muck spreading.

In the discussion that followed Mr Cubitt and Mr G Davison pointed out how well women had taken up not only fruit picking in the district but also hoeing and weeding.

The EDP cutting – Women and farm work.

The longer the war lasted, Miss Burton warned that the shortages of labour would become greater.

Mr Henry Overman (Weasenham) had told her that he had women spreading manure for him, who had done it more carefully and evenly than ever he had this comparatively hard work done by men. Women used to do farm work in Norfolk, and it is still the custom in other counties of the UK.