Our 75th accession in 2004 was a diary of the Glamorganshire Branch of the National Farmer’s Union from 1921, also known as ‘The Farmer’s Annual’.
The National Farmer’s Union was established in 1908 following a meeting at the Smithfield Show. The first Welsh representatives, Brecon and Radnor, joined that year, with each Welsh county following over the next few years.
In 1921, the Glamorganshire Branch had its offices at 2 & 3 Market Street, Bridgend. Its President was Noah Morgan. Listed in the diary are all the branch officers and its solicitors. Each of the 24 sub-branches within Glamorgan also appear, with their Chairmen, Secretaries and delegates named. The branches comprised:
- Gower (South)
- Gower (Central)
- Gower (North)
- Llantwit Major
- Llantwit Fadre
- West Glamorgan
The Glamorganshire Branch also had a number of sub-committees, namely the Labour Committee, Legal Committee and Milk Committee. Again their officials are listed in the diary.
The content of the diary is varied. It includes a number of articles: ‘The Old Glamorgan Pig’ by Alderman Illtyd Thomas, ‘The Vale of Glamorgan Heavy Horse Society’ by D. C. Watts of Cowbridge, and a piece on the NFU by its national President E. W. Langford.
Alongside these articles are shorter pieces offering advice on specific issues such as taxation (including the wife allowance and housekeeper allowance), tithe payments, details of the composition of cow’s milk, and guidance on how to estimate the contents of haystacks, bushels of oats, barley and wheat, and ascertaining the weight of cattle.
The business of the Branch for the year is summarised. Topics discussed include legislation and government control, wages and hours of work, land settlement, milk prices, wool, wheat, local taxation, weights and measures and legal cases.
Listed in the diary are the Lord-Lieutenants for Wales and Members of Parliament for Glamorgan, the dates of principle fairs and markets in south Wales for 1921, and dates for eclipse for the year. There are also adverts for farm machinery, suppliers and agents.
The diary section is formed of breeders’ tables for each month, which assist farmers in calculating the due dates of pregnant mares, cows, ewes, goats and sows, along with cash account tables.
The Farmers’ Annual would undoubtedly have been an useful tool for farmers across Glamorgan.