vegetarian craze and organic farming may appear to be a nineties
discovery. But in fact it dates back decades.
A far thinking
farmer, David Clement, from Broome Farm, near Stourbridge, decided
to go organic in the early thirties - and the first health food
shop opened in Birmingham in 1898.
The idea of
organic farming germinated in the then 22-year-old Mr Clement's
mind in 193l when he joined the Rudolf Steiner Sunfield community
for disabled children in Selly Oak, Birmingham.
He had gone
straight there from Oxford University and was a great admirer of
Steiner's philosophy of bio-dynamic agriculture during a decade
of increasing mechanism in farming.
Early the following
year Mr Clement, now aged 88, moved with the Sunfield community
to their new home in Clent, not far from Broome Farm, which he took
over in 1933 to develop his organic ideas which had been fermenting
in his mind since 193l.
He decided he
was going to grow the best quality food for man and beast. His first
move in this direction was to make Broome Farm into a self- contained
that a farm should be a good balance of the right number of crops
and the right number of stock for the land.
"It was like
a symphony," he claimed. "We had cattle, sheep, hens geese, pigs,
We fed them all ourselves, We didn't buy in any food. It's great
to get the right relationship of grassland to arable land and it's
a completely fascinating system because every animal lives also
on the waste of another animal."
Mr Clement said
the farm tried its best to be self-supporting, which no farm did
in the thirties. The farm did everything on the basis of what was
"But we tried
to feed our own animals completely which no one else was doing,"
said Mr Clement.
He added that
he accepted the idea that "nature spirits" were a reality and treated
everything in nature with more respect.
He was dealing
with spirits as well as physical things.
work upon the roots, the undines upon the leaf and stem of the plant,
the sylphs upon the flower and the salamanders on the forming of
the seed," he stressed.
His belief was
that spiritual beings were life, beings that push the plants up
out of the ground. He added that they were difficult to appreciate
today because people were far too materialistic in their outlook.
that everything is physical but in the old days people experienced
them," he went on.
Because of the
belief that planets have an influence on all plant growth, in subtle
ways, the whole farm had to be a complete organism in itself.
The farm composted
all its manure and vegetable matter. "One always strove for harmony
on the farm - a feeling of well-being." he said. When there was
disease about homeopathic remedies were used on cattle.
idea was to supply nourishing organic food to Sunfield's community
for disabled children. His approach to farming was influenced by
a strong belief in nature spirits.
division champions, West Bromwich Albion, beat Birmingham
2-1 in the Wembley FA Cup Final in April. Their acheivements
were commemmorated on this souvenir scarf.
fails in licence deception: The
importance of NOT being Ernest was brought home to a Wolverhampton
taxi driver when he was hauled before the town's stipendiary magistrate
for adding an "Ernest" to his single name of "Herbert" when applying
for a duplicate lost driving licence.
The taxi man,
Herbert Brown, was accused of making a false statement to obtain
a licence and driving a car when not licensed.
It was revealed
in court in July that during the application for the duplicate licence
at a taxation office, the clerk found he had two registered names
- Herbert Brown whose licence expired a year previously, and Ernest
Herbert Brown whose licence expired in June 1931.
The taxi driver
told the clerk, untruthfully, that he was Ernest Brown.
He told the
court he had lost his wallet with 26 previous licences in it and
didn't known when it expired.
magistrate said that in any event, Mr Brown only stood to gain a
shilling or two over the false declaration and let the taxi driver
off after hearing that he had once helped the police to catch a
at Roberts Street School in Upper Gornal Pose for the camera
long faces for feminists:
women, along with many of their sisters in the rest of the country,
rebelled against the return of the long skirt. They labelled it
as an infringement on their liberty and comfort.
One woman told
the National Union of Societies for Equal Citizenship in March that
it was no coincidence that women had gained freedom in dress and
freedom in politics at the same time.
"When our clothes
get long again and our legs are tied up, our minds will suffer,"
she told the meeting. Despite fashion gurus pushing for the longer
skirt, many women still went for the shorter hemline.