Arthur Young.

The farmer's tour through the east of England : being the register of a journey through various counties of this kingdom, to enquire into the state of agriculture, &c. ... (Volume 4) online

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THE



FARMER'S tour



THROUGH THE



EAST of ENGLAND.



BEING



The Regifter of a Journey through various Counties.

of this Kingdom, to enquire into the State

of Agriculture, &c.



CONTAINING,

I. The particular Methods of
cultivating the Soil.

II. The C&nducT: of live Stock,
and the modern Syftem of
Breeding.

III. The State of Population, the
Poor, Labour, Provifions, Sec.

IV. The Rental and Value of



the Soil, and its Divifion int»
Farms, with various Circum-
ftances attending their Size
and State.
V. The Minutes of above five
hundred original Experiments,
communicated by feveral of
the Nobility, Gentry, &c.



WITH



Other Subjects that tend to explain the prefent State of
English Husbandry.



By


the Au
Tours


thor of the Farmer's Letters
through the North and South of Er


, and

igland.


the










VOL.


IV.








, _



LONDON:

Printed for W. Strahan; W. Nicoll, -No. 51, St,

Raul's Church-Yard; B. Collins, at Saiifbury ;

and j. Balfouk, at Edinburgh.

MDCCLXXf.




CONTENTS

OF THE

FOURTH VOLUME.

Letter

XXX. TpROM Taunton to Bath. — Mr.

Bampfield'j, at Heftercomb. — Sir
Charles TyntV, at Halfwell. — Lord Eg-
mont'i - , at Enmore, Page i to 25.

XXXI. From Bath to Barnet. — Sheep Hufbandry
pf Wiltfhire. — Mr. Andrews'^, at the
Grove. — Mr. CowfladeV Experiments. —
Peat. — Mr. Clayton'.* Experiments. — Sir
John Hoby Mill' j. — Mr. Burke'j. — The
Earl of Holdernefle\f, - 16 to 92.

XXXII. Review of the Intelligence concerning
Carrots, - - 93/0112.

XXXIII. Ditto of Potatoes^ - 113 to 123.

XXXIV. Ditto of Madder, 124 to 130.

XXXV. Ditto of Burnet, - 131 to 140.

XXXVI. Ditto of Sainfoine, 141 to 147.
3£XXVII. Ditto of Lucerne, 14.8 to 162.

XXXVIII. Ditto of Clover, - 163 to 169.

XXXIX. Ditto of Cabbages, - 170/0190.
XL. Ditto of Turnips, - 191 to 194,
XLI. D///0 of Hops, 195 /a 196.



CONTENTS.

Letter

XLII. Ditto of Drilled Crop >x, 197/0217;

XLIII. Ditto of Rental, - 218/0229.

XLIV. Ditto of Products of Corn, 230 to 237.

XLV. Dz7/o Products of Pulfe, 238 /a 242.

XL VI. Ditto Quantities of Seed, 243/0252.

XL VI I. Ditto of Tillage, - 253/0273.

XLVIII. D///0 0/ &&*#, - 274/0 291.

2CLIX. Ditto of Cows, - 292/0300.

L. Ditto of the Price of Provijions, 301 to 307 ►

LI. Ditto of Firing, Tools, &c. 308/0310.

LII. Ditto the Price of Labour, 311 /0317.
LIII. Comparifon of Labour and Provi/ions,

3 l8 ^334-
LIV. Ditto with Rates and Rife of Labour,

335 to 3 66 -
LV. Review of the Particulars of Farms,

36 J to 384."
LVI. Ditto of flocking Farms, 385 to 3 8 8.

LVII. Ditto of Tythe, - 388/0 389.

LVIII. Ditto of the Value of the $oil, 390/0393.
LIX. Ditto of Manuring, - 394 t0 454-
LX. S/tf/* of the Soil in England, proportioned
to this Tour, - - 455-

APPENDIX, - 470 to 506.

ADDENDA; Criticifms anfwered, 507.



THE

FARMER'S TOUR

THROUGH

ENGLAND.



LETTER XXX.

MATTHEW COOMBS, of Taun-
ton * St. James, has pra&ifed the
drilling of peafe three years : he makes his
rows equally diftant, 20 inches afunder,
ufes ten pecks, or three bufhels of feed per
acre, and cleans them by two, three, or
four horfe-hoeings, and alfo hand-hoes
and weeds them. He likewife draws down

the



* In the way from Henlade to Bridgewatet\
I went out of the direct road for the pleafure
of feeing three places, which I had heard of

Vol. IV. B before



2 THE FARMER'S TOUR

the rows of peafe to the fun with rakes y
when twelve inches high. This operation
he thinks effential to the welfare of the
crop. The produce rifes from 20 to 40
bufhels per acre. Eight acres laft year
yielded him. 40/. for kids fold at market^
and 140 bufhels of dry peafe. The ex-
pences of the culture are,

Hand-hoeing and weeding, 1 s.

Drawing the peafe, 1 s.

Horfe-hoeing, 3 s. His



before I came into Somerjetjhire: thefe are

Hefterccmb, the feat of Bampfield, Efq.

Halfivell, Sir Charles Tynte\ and Enmore-Caftk,
the earl of Egmont\

The gardens at Hejlercomb are the object : a
rural fequeftered vale with wood ; much ot the
ground wild and romantic : Mr. Bampfield has
rilled this canvafs in a manner that does honour
to his tafle. A walk winds around the whole
.in fome places along the fides of the hills, at
others it dips into retired bottoms, and rifes
again over the eminences, commanding views
of the diftant country. Here was no water,
but it was brought from the higher lands,
and is exhibited in various forms. The
grounds are finely thickened with wood, which
is fo artfully managed, as to make the extent
appear vaftry larger than it really is.

r, The



THROUGH ENGLAND. 3

His courfc of crops is,

1. Wheat and ecldifh turnips.

2. Drilled peafe, and turnips after.

3. Wheat fown in February.

4. Barley.

5. Clover one year.

This honeft farmer rifes much above the
practice of his neighbours, and deferves
commendation for fo doing : he is a kn~
fible intelligent man.

About



The walk firft leads from the houfe, behind
fome thick wood, on the fide of a fine falling
valley, to a bench, which is elegantly fituated :
at the bottom of a bold declivity is a Lke,
quite environed with an amphitheatre of hanging
wood ; the varied, waving flopes of green,
break into the dark grove in the moil beautiful
manner : an urn on a rifing knole is excellently
fituated, half obfeured by the (hade of the trees :
a fmall fall of water from out a moffy bank,
thickly tufted with wood, enlivens this moft
agreeable fcene. Above the whole a hermitage
is feen, fituated on a projecting point of the hill ;
from whence it looks down on all the objects
beneath. The parts of this view are extremely
well connected, though various. The lake at
your feet, the (helving lawn, and the thick
woods, unite moft happily with the water-fail ;
from thence your eye feels no pain in pafling
B 2 to



4 THE FARMER'S TOUR

About Hal/well, the courfe is,
i. Wheat 3. Clover and ray-

2. Barley or oats grafs 2 years.

Alfo,

1. Wheat 4. Wheat

2. Barley 5. Peafe or beans.

3. Clover

Wheat yields on an average 15
bufhels, barley 18, oats 25, beans 20,
peafe 14. They have fome turnips, but

none

to the urn, which is in the very in de of the
woods, that thicken quite to the hermitage.

Rifing the hill you come to a winding .errafs,
from which you look down to the ~ight, on the
hollow, with the water at the hotter": : the
effecl: fine. Between the hills you Catch the
diftant country, which is compoPd of rich
inclofures. From herce the icene changes totally,
to a cool, fequ^ftered vale, almoft wholly ihaded
by the thick woods, that hang on the fides of
the hills : no building or diftant profpect is feen,
but a tranfparent lpring gullies out of a little
fpot of rock, mofs and wood, and trickles over
a pebble courfe through the lawn : the path
then leads through a dark wood, and comes
out at a ruftic feat, from which you look at once
on a cafcade that will rivet you to the fpot with
admiration.

A bold ftream rufhes from out a rock, and
falls in the mod natural manner imaginable

about



THROUGH ENGLAND. 5

none hoed. Their tillage they perform
chiefly with oxen, 6 or 8 in a plough and
one horfe : an acre a day good work.

Sir Charles Tynte ufes them in harnefs
(a practice I before thought had been
peculiar to Mr. Cooke of Derbyfiire) one
before another, or abreafl: at pleafure ; and
never puts more than four in a plough ;
they move much quicker than in yoaks^
and draw heavier weights. Four doing
the work of 6 or 8 and one horfe, is an

amazing



about 40 feet, nearly perpendicular over a
bank of rock-work, mofs, ivy and weeds. Never
was nature lb admirably imitated. The back
ground is a wood quite impervious, and as fteep
as the fall of the ftream : the whole fpot is a
little opening in a thick wood, and no object
to be {ixn but that which engrofTes your at-
tention. The accompanyment is as happy as
the principal : a gloomy wood, whofe branches
bend about with all the eafe of nature, and
exclude every thing but the fun beams, which
fparkle on the falling water : the floor of this
fequeftered dell is a fmall lawn, in which the water
is loft. So complete a fcene, in which every
thing is complete, and nothing to offend, will
not be often feen.

Vol. IV. B 3 Leaving



6 THE FARMER'S TOUR

amazing faving; and yet it is certainly a fac%
that 4 in Sir Chariest team are equal to 6*
and an horfc in the farmers, and fometimeSj
to 8. A companion fo extremely dec-Hive,
that it is amazing they do not imitate
it : I fuppofe the expence of harnefs, added
to the lofs of laying afidc the yoaks, is what!
deters them ; for one farmer I talked with,.}
who had all his life been uied to oxen,j

allowed



Leaving this moil agreeable fpot, the walk
leads through a piece of wild ground, which
contrails the more intereiling fcenes we havej
palled j but the ihrubby grafs, fcattered withj
fingle trees, whofe tops unite with the woods!
that fpread over the hills, form a retirement;
that will not allow you to drop your attention.

The path winds from hence up the hillj
through a dark wood, from which it breaks
fuddenly into an alcove bench, opening at once>
on a fine proip^ct over the vale of Taunton:*
Crofling the pailure, and again entering thei
Woods, you come to a fmall bench, from
which you have a very pretty birds-eye land- 1 )
fcape through the branches of the trees, en a.
part of the vale of launton^ with the fteeple*
of the town: it is managed with talle. Riling
the hill again, we next came to the hermitage
or witch hou-fc, from the figure of an old witch

painted



THROUGH ENGLAND. 7

allowed that his landlord's were fafter
walking beads than his, though he did
not put fo many in a plough.

There is much rich grazing land around
Bridgwater ■, that lets from 20 to 40 s. an
acre. It is chiefly ufed for fatting Devon-
fhire heifers, which they buy in at Can-
dlemas from 3 /. to 6 /. each, and keep them
at hay till the grafs fprings ; then they allot
a beaft to every acre, which pays on



an



painted in the center pannel : the occafion of a
very genteel compliment to the. grounds from
Dr. hanzhorne :

O'er BampfielcTs wood:-, by various nature grze'd,
A witch prefides ! — but then that witch is taste.

The view from hence is very ftriking ; the
fpot is the top of a hill, which projects boldly
over the vale, and being lofty, the declivity is
iteep i the hollow vale, with the lake at the bot-
tom, deep funk in the hanging woods, has a
great effect ; the union of lawn, hill, wood and
water, romantic. The diftant country above
opens to the eye, and renders the whole complete.

From hence, the walk leads to a feat, which
looks full into a fine hollow, totally furrounded
with impervious woods ; not one intruding ob-
ject ; but an enchanter feems to have torn up a
cafcade, and flung it into the dark bofom of
thele noble groves. A fcene more perfectly
B 4 picturefque



8 THE FARMER'S TOUR

an average 40 s. profit. Befides this every
acre will fatten from one and a half to two
wethers in the winter, to 8 s. a head profit :
this grafs land muft be incomparably good.
There is a vaft trad, of rich grazing marfh
from Bridgewater towards Brijiol, and
quite to Axbridge. It lets from 25 s. to
30 s. an acre : 20 of thefe acres will fatten
16 oxen of 50 fcorein the fummer, and 40
wethers in the winter. The profit on the

oxen



picturefque I have not viewed : never was a
falling water more happily united with the va-
rious fhades of retiring woods ; not an edging,
or flat bank of trees, or mere back ground,
but this is feen deep in the recefles of a woody
hollow, and beneath the eye, with the peculiarity
of looking down on a water-fall, with a greater
effect than eyeing it upwards : a circumftance I
remember no where befides. It is a fcene,
which fets the pencil at defiance.

From this fpot, the path carries you to many
natural openings in the wood, which let in a
great variety of profpedls, excellently managed
to fet off the preceding fcenes by contrail : they
are in general iequeftered, and borrow half their
charm? from the gloomy (hades, in which they
are viewed : thefe are more open and gay \ in
fome places you look down on the vale, with
the oppofite hills varied with woods and icattered
trees ; in others, over the home fields and catch,

4 through



THROUGH ENGLAND. 9

oxen is from 4/. to 5/. and 8/. a head on
the fheep.

Hearing there was a great cattle fair kept
annually in an arable field at Bridgcivater
I was defirous of knowing its produces ;
fuppofing that they muft be very con-
fiderable from fo rich a fold ; the courfe
of crops regular on it is,

1. Wheat, manured for with 20 loads
an acre.

2. Peafe or beans.

3. Clover one year.

Which



through the plantations, diflant objects, with ihe
rich vale of Taunton opening in various breaks.
The whole admirably contrived for the intro-
duction of uncommon variety in a fmall fpace of
ground.

Mr. Bampfield has ornamented his houfe with
feveral paintings of his own performance. His
copy of Vandyke's king Charles on horfeback is
executed with all the fire and freedom of the
original. The landfcape over the chimney in
the dining-room, a compolition of his own, is
beautiful : the brilliancy and warmth of the
tints are very pleafing. In the drawing-room is
a piece of birds in needle-work by Mrs. Barr.p-
field, in which the colours are aftonifhingly fine ;
the hen's back is nature itfelf, and the relief un-
commonly bold. Some fmaller pieces in the

fame



io THE FARMER'S TOUR

Which is a better courfe than many in
Somerfetfhire : part of this field (it is an
open one) is,

i. Wheat, 2. Peafe,

conftantly. As to crops they give no
reafon to fuppofe the land the better for
the fair.

Wheat, 20 bufhels.

Barley, 30 ditto.

Peafe, 25 ditto.

Beans, 30 ditto.

Clover, 2 loads of hay, and then a crop

of feed.

In

fame room, of other birds, &c. are touched with a
fpirit and livelinefs, that do honour to the lady's

genius.

■* * * *

From Hefier ' combe to Enmore-Caftle, I took the
road by Cutherjlone lodge, a very high ground,
which commands a moft extenfive view over the
Brijiol channel, acrofs Glamorgan/hire, to the
mountains of Brecknock. The channel, with the
Holmes, is a fine object, and the waving hills
and vales around the lodge, cut into inclofures,
are pleafing-, but the whole is not equal in
beauty to ieveral profpects I have elfewhere
feen. The objects are too indiftinct : you look
over a country twelve miles to the channel, that
is 21 miles over, then the whole county of

Glamorgan*



THROUGH ENGLAND. n

In all this country they manure as much
as they can for wheat : fome few for beans ;
but no hand-hoeing, and fow the wheat
after the beans.

Throughout the vale of Taunton and
here alfo, they are very attentive to getting
their wheat lands into good hufband-like
order : I think they mind this point more
than any other. They plough much of their
land on to narrow beds from 4 to 10 feet

overs.



Glamorgan, and far into Brecknock/hire: this is
too great : the eye receives no pleafure from
being told, that it fees fourfcore miles. A chan-
nel five miles wide, at the bottom of the decli-
vity, and winding round a cultivated country,
with the V/elch mountains riling immediately
from the oppofite fhore, would be ten times
more linking than Cutherjlon. The view of the
Ijl: of Wight channel, from the hill above Coives,
much exceeds this in real beauty.

Excufe this digrefiion, which I mould have
avoided, had I not been told, that this view
was the noblefc in England.

Enmore-Caftle is fituated on a gradually rifing
hill, in the midft of a fine rich country, about
four miles from Bridgwater. It is one of the
mod peculiar buildings in the kingdom : it is a
large quadrangular caftle, built of a dark-coloured
ftone, round a court. It is furrounded by

a dry



12 THE FARMERS TOUR
over, and break all the clods that are left
by the harrows, drawing at the fame time
the loofe earth from the furrows on to the
beds ; this they call clodding and hacking,
and when finiihed, the fields have a very
neat appearance ; but what is very aftonifh-
ing, with all this attention to their wheat
lands, they do not (as I before obferved
about Henlade) know what a water-
furrow is ! On wet clayey foils, and flat
ones too, they have no contrivance to

carry



a dry fofle, 40 feet wide and 16 deep. This
opens all round into the offices under the caftle,
and likewife (which is the peculiarity) into a
whole range of others under the lawn, which
furrounds it ; and among the reft to the (tables,
which are all under ground : an excellent con-
trivance to have them conveniently near the
houfe : how it agrees with the conftitutions of
the horfes I know not. The principal way into
the ftables is at a distance from the caftle, where
the entrance is at the fide of the hill. The fol-
lowing is a lift of the rooms.

The hall 40 by 28, and 27 high; a gallery
round it, but it is too dark.

The armoury, 36 by 22.

The anti-chamber, 25 by 18.

Bed-chamber, 22 by 18.

Dreffing-room, 22 by 14. Here are feveral
good portraits.

The reft offices.



THROUGH ENGLAND. 13

carry off the water, which lodges in the
furrows of the beds, and which muft
half poilbn no flight portion of their
crops.

Leaving Brzdgewafer, I took the road
to Bathi paffing within fight of a very
remarkable trad of country, called King's
Sedgmoor : it is on an average nine miles
long and two broad ; it is a flat black peat
bog, but fo very rich, that fome fenfible

farmers



In the principal itory are,

The gallery 66 by 22, and 19 high.

The dining-room 41 by 22, and 19 high.

The library 46 by 19.

Lord Egmont's dreffing-room, 19 by 17.

Bed-chamber 29 by 16.

Lady Egmont's drefling-room 19 by 17. Over
the chimney the taking down from the crofs, in
the ftile of Albert Barer. There are many
figures, and moft minute, though unmean-
ing expreflion. There is neither compofition,
nor any know ledge of the clear obfcure.

Lady's wardrobe, 15 by 11.

Lady's woman's room, 19 by 13.

Another r N cm, 20 by 19.

The cabinet, 18 by 17. So called, but it is
a mere waiting room.

Drilling room, 22 by 14. Here are feveral
pictures, landicapes -, ftill life, &c.

Bed-



if THE FARMER'S TOUR

formers allured me, it wanted nothing but
draining to be made well worth from 20s.
to 25 s. an acre, on an average. But at
prefent it is fo encompafled by higher lands,
that the water has no way to get off, bu
by evaporation ; in winter it is a fea, and
yields lcarce any food, except in very dry
iummers. What a difgrace to the whole
nation is it, to have 11,520 fuch acres lie
wafte in a kingdom that is quarrelling about

high



Bed-chamber, 22 by 20< Crimfon velvet,
hung with tapeftiy.

Anti-chamber, 25 by 19. Hung with tapcf-
try ; fome of it fine.

Saloon, 44 by 30, and 20 high. The win-
dows of this room are fo low and fmall, that it
is rather dark. Over the chimney a very good
portrait. It is hung with fine tapefcry.

Drawing-room, 25 by 19. Here are four
admirable portraits, of fine colouring and excel-
lent expreflion.

-:■=• * *

Halfioell, the feat of Sir Charles Tynie^ Bart.
is beautifully fituated in the middle of an orna-
mented park, about two miles from Erimtire
caftle. What chiefly attracts the attention of
ftrangers, arc the decorated grounds. The rid-
ino- which leads to the principal points of view,
crofies the park from the houfe ; commanding
a fine view of the rich vale of Bridgwater. It

then



THROUGH ENGLAND. 15

kigh prices of provifions! The prefent
ufe made of this moor is not of the
value of 2S.6 d. an acre.

Qwmtoc hills are an other very extenfive
tract of wafte land ; the foil part rocky ;
and what is called in this country a Jlom
rufi ; which I take to be excellent land for
fainfoine ; but much of this fpace is of a
better quality ; I was informed that it would
let inclofed, and without further improve-
ment,



then runs by the fide of a woody precipice, and
up through fome new plantations ; from a dark
part of which you enter through a door into a
temple dedicated to Robin Hood; upon which a
molt noble profpect breaks at once on the be-
holder j which acts not a little by the furprizc
of the entrance. The ground fhelves from
it in front, and to the right gradually •, but
to the left in bolder Hopes •, where the dips are
beautifully grouped with wood ; and the hills
above them rife in waving inclofures.

About the houfe the groves thicken •, and a
vaft vale of rich inclofures, fpotted in a beauti-
ful manner, with white objects ftretch beyond it
to the diftance of 12 miles j then you command
the channel, which is here 9 miles over ; the
Holm riling in the mid ft of it very boldly ; and
beyond the whole, the mountains of Wales rife-
one



i6 THE FARMERS TOUR

ment, at 4 J-, an acre; at prefent it does
not yield as many farthings. It is 14 miles
long by 2 broad, on an average ; fo here
are 17,920 acres more that want only in-
clofing to be advanced from nothing to 4 s.

Hunsfield moors are another wafte that
wants inclofing alone, to be made worth
20/. an acre; rich meadow.

About Glafionbury there are very exten-
five tradts of fine meadows that let from

20J-.



one behind another. This view, I think, much
excells that from Cutherjlon lodge.

From hence the riding leads up the hills,
commanding all the way a mofl extenfive proi-
pech After which it turns down through a
plantation to a fmgle fmall oak, with a few pales
about it, and a bench. Here the grounds fink-
ing from the eye, form a mofl fweet landfcape.
The lawns undulate in the fineft manner, and
the groves of oak feem to drop into the hollows.
The clumps and fcattered trees have an uncom-
mon elegance, and unite the fore ground of
the fcene with Robin Hood's temple, which
is here feen to great advantage. Beyond the
whole you have the diflant extenfive pro-
fpect.

From hence the riding leads down the hill to
a wood of noble oaks, which fhade a wild
iequeftered fpot •, where a limpid fpring rifes at

die



THROUGH ENGLAND. i 7

20 j. to 40 j-. an acre. It is applied to keep-
ing many cows and fatting beafls. Here
likcwife is a vaft moor called the turfery,
in which they dig turf for burning : it is a
flat bog, and might all be made very good
meadow. There is a full view of all thefe
lands from the Tor and Windmill 'bills. The
latter hill confifts of a fine rich fandy loam ; the
principal part of which is let to potatoe men
at 40 s. an acre. Their method of cultivat-



ing



the foot of a rock, over-hung in a fine bold
manner by wood which grows from its clefts.
The water winds away through the grove in a
proper manner.

Here is a tablet with thefe lines.

When I/rael's wand'ring fons the defart trod,

The melting rock obeyM the prophet's rod ;

Forth gufh'd the Itream, the tribes their thirft allay'd,

Forgetful of their God they rofe and play'd.

Ye happy fwains for whom thefe waters flow,

Oh ! may your hearts with grateful ardors glow ;

Lo, here a fountain (beams at his command,

Not o'er a barren, but a fruitful land ;

Where Nature's choiceft gifts the vallies fill,

And fmiling Plenty gladdens ev'ry hill.

Turning the corner you catch a bridge, under
a thick lhade, and then come to the Druid's tem-
ple, built in a juft ftile of bark, &c. the view
quite gloomy and confined ; the water winds
filently along, except a little gufhing fall, which

Vol. IV. C hurts



iS THE FARMERS TOUR

ing them is to dig the land into beds, 9
feet over ; they dung all but the new land
on firft breaking up, at the rate of about
3 C. wt. of dung per lug, of 20 feet by 9
wide: 10 bufliels of fets, which are chiefly
fmall ones, plant an acre ; they keep them
clean by hand-weeding, and cover the beds
with earth out of furrows ; dig up the crop
with fpades ; it amounts to from 6 pecks
to 3 bufhels per lug, average 9 pecks ;

per



hurts not the emotions raifed by fo fequeftered a
fcene.

Following the path towards the bridge, you
catch, juft before ycu come at it, a little land-
icape through the trees, of diftant water finely
united with wood. — From the bridge the river
appears to great advantage ; nobly embanked on
one fide with tall fpreading trees •, and on the
other with green Hopes fcattered with fingle



Online LibraryArthur YoungThe farmer's tour through the east of England : being the register of a journey through various counties of this kingdom, to enquire into the state of agriculture, &c. ... (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 25)