The first of our Spring Seminars was held last Monday and was a great success, with over 90 participants. The two presentations were recorded, and you can see them on our YouTube channel (voice and slides). We recommend that you subscribe to the British Agricultural History Society channel so that you receive a notification whenever a new video is added. We would appreciate it if you 'Like' the videos as well as watching them, as this will increase the channel's visibility. (Tip: YouTube uses the same log in as Google.) 

Please register now for the second seminar, to secure your place.

Monday 15 March: Agriculture on the hoof

  • Dr Andrew Margetts (UCL), '"The Wandering Herd": the medieval cattle economy of south-east England, c. 450-1450'
  • Dr Eugene Costello (UCC), ‘Feeding capitalism and facing its consequences? Upland pastoralism in Ireland and Sweden, c.1350-1850’
Details and Registration

Other societies are also launching online lectures: we noted, for instance, the series launched by the Yorkshire Vernacular Architecture Studies Group. If you are launching your own series or know of others, let us know. Historians always knew that epidemics were transformative and accelerated change: it is the adoption of Zoom and video conferencing as a ubiquitous form of communication which will perhaps mark this one.

The publishers are also keeping themselves busy. It is also with great pleasure that we can announce the publication of Histories of people and landscape. Essays on the Sheffield region in memory of David Hey. David, as will be recalled by many, was one of the finest local historians of his generation. From his base in south Yorkshire, he made a sparkling contribution to the agricultural and landscape history of the district. David was also a committed member of the Society, holding every office including that of President. This volume is welcome as a memorial to one of our own, who contributed so much and is so sorely missed.

The formal launch will take place on 12 April, but the volume can be already be purchased at a discounted price from the publishers, the University of Hertfordshire Press. Details are on the BAHS Home Page.

We have also received a notice of what sounds like the definitive account of the Foldcourse system by John Belcher: The Foldcourse and East Anglian Agriculture and Landscape, 1100-1900 (Boydell). For details see the flier on the BAHS Home Page, which offers a sizeable discount.

Boydell are increasingly important publishers in rural, agricultural and landscape history. Their new series, Boydell Studies in Rural History, will produce its first volumes early in 2020 or early in 2021: more on those later. For the moment, you might also be interested to know that there is a Boydell sale, offering 40 per cent off until 12 March.


In a different sort of publication, we have made a large number of additions to LIBRAL this month. But this tranche is distinctive for two reasons. The first is that all the works we have added concern Welsh agricultural and rural history. They span the whole period from the General Views by Walter Davies through to the The Land of Britain accounts from the 1930s. And it is this which forms our second innovation. We have the permission of the copyright holder to add the whole series of The land of Britain to LIBRAL. This will not be done in a day, and probably not wholly in 2021, but we will make the whole of this magnificent source available to be discovered by a new generation. As of now, all the Welsh counties are available to readers on LIBRAL so those who have not encountered The Land of Britain can take a peek to see what it might hold for them.

Sign Up for LIBRAL
As always, the latest two batches of additions to LIBRAL are listed on the front page of the LIBRAL Gateway, which is your one-stop shop for everything LIBRAL.
LIBRAL Gateway
We hope to see you at one or more of our seminars!
Best wishes
Richard Hoyle
Acting Secretary, British Agricultural History Society
BAHS Website
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