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The BAHS is the national society for the study of the history of agriculture, rural society and the landscape of Britain and Ireland. We publish a magazine, Rural History Today, as well as a scholarly journal, Agricultural History Review, and our conferences provide opportunities for historians (professional and non-professional) to meet, mix and exchange views in a friendly and sociable atmosphere.

Latest BAHS publications

Cover of current issue of Rural History Today

Agricultural History Review Volume 65 part 2 is now available to members via the Ingenta web site and has been mailed out. We apologise for its lateness but as you can see it is a bumper issue!
Rural History Today issue 34, the first to be edited by Rebecca Ford, is available online and has been mailed to members.

Cover of current Agricultural History Review

Volume 62 is now ‘open access’ on this web site.

Report of Rural History 2017 at Leuven

Dr Samantha Shave Samantha Shave attended the Rural History 2017 Conference held at Leuven last September: read her report here.

Anthony Phillips

In November we announced the death of A. D. M. Phillips, formerly editor of Agricultural History Review. We have now been informed that the Head of Geography and Geology at the University of Keele (Prof. Chris Fogwill) intends to hold a memorial symposium later in the year. We will post more information about the symposium as it emerges.

The Keele campus is very attractive and has a well-established arboretum so it is also intended to plant a tree, possibly a Eucryphia Nymansensis, in Tony's memory. Meanwhile, if you would like to make a donation to the memorial fund, please send an email to


The LIBrary of Rural and Agricultural Literature: enthusiastic testers wanted!

Version 3.0 now has over 300 digitized items uploaded to it, including 72 volumes of Farmer's Magazine and 45 issues of Dairy World. We have been working with TannerRitchie Publishing to use their MEMSOshell platform to host our online library. We need feedback on the content and the user experience, to help us improve it and ensure that it meets your needs. Please sign up here if you are interested in helping us.

Please sign up for LIBRAL 3.0 here.

The LIBRAL 2.0 site will close on 10 February 2018, to be replaced by LIBRAL 3.0.

email newsletter

Do you have trouble remembering to look at this web site? Would you like a reminder now and again? We plan to send out email newsletters about once a month (on average) when the content on the web site changes. We promise not to bombard you with spam, and you can un-subscribe whenever you like, from a link at the bottom of each newsletter.

BAHS forums

Do have a look at BAHS forums, where you can ask questions or start discussions on any subject related to agricultural history and the history of rural economy and society. Even if you don't have a question in mind right now you might be the one person able to answer one of the questions that are there! So please register now and subscribe to the ‘Agricultural history’ forum so that you will be notified by email about any new posts.


It’s easy to join the BAHS. Just fill in an online form and pay via PayPal. You can also renew your membership in this way. Or you may prefer to use a paper formAdobe PDF icon and send a cheque through the post.

Publicity leaflet

The Society has a publicity leaflet. If you would like copies of the leaflet to distribute to potential members, or to leave at a location likely to be frequented by potential members, please contact us.

Funding opportunities

We have a fund available to support otherwise unfunded Conferences and Initiatives. If you are considering holding a conference, workshop, special meeting or something similar, why not apply?   We also offer bursaries to student members who want to attend our conferences and other meetings supported by the Society.

Spring Conference 2018

Daffodils in Walled Garden at Cannington

The Society’s Spring Conference 2018 will be held at the Cannington Campus of Bridgwater and Taunton College just outside Bridgwater, 26 to 28 March 2018. Cannington has a lovely walled garden in the grounds of a medieval priory.

The varied programme includes papers on Water Management in Britain; the Knight Family and the Reclamation of Exmoor Forest; the Economics of Grain Storage in England; Women’s Work in Early Modern England; and the Green Revolution.
If you are a new researcher and would like to present a 20-minute paper in the new researchers’ session, please send your abstract to Prof. Henry French,, by 5 March 2018. Bursaries are available to enable postgraduates to attend (same email address and deadline).
There will also be an excursion on the afternoon of Tuesday 27 March to the Somerset Museum of Rural Life in Glastonbury.
Book now! | Prices | How to get to Cannington
Not too far away: Historic Farms in Crewkerne

Recent publications

The Avon Local History and Archaeology announces the publication of The Victorian model farm in south Gloucestershire and north Somerset, by William Evans. This tells the story of how mid-19th century agricultural improvement played out in south Gloucestershire and north Somerset, a region not far from our Spring Conference venue this year.
To get a discount pre-order using this form before 15 February.
Servants in Rural Europe, 1400-1900 Boydell and Brewer announce the publication of Servants in Rural Europe, 1400-1900, edited by Jane Whittle. This is the first book to survey the experience of servants in rural Europe from the fifteenth to the nineteenth century. It features a range of methodologies, reflecting the variety of source materials and approaches available to historians of this topic in a range of European countries and time periods, and demonstrating the strong common themes that emerge from studying servants.
The Berkshire Record Society announces the publication of Berkshire Feet of Fines 1307-1509 (2 vols), edited by Margaret Yates. Feet of fines record the transfer of freehold land and were a secure means of ensuring good title to a property. The volumes provide abstracts of all the feet of fines for Berkshire, 1,581 in all, covering the reigns of Edward II to Henry VII. In the Introduction there is a discussion of the nature of the documents and their constituent features, and also an indication of their use as historical evidence for Berkshire’s landowners and their properties. Margaret Yates

The delighted editor.
Special offer for BAHS members: until 31 December 2018, the pair of volumes are available from the BRS using this form for £35, plus £5 p&p. (normal price £45).
The Diary of a Claines Farmer, 1883: Isaac John Sansome, of Oak Farm, Bevere, Claines, Worcestershire, transcribed by his great-grandson, Geoff Sansome, gives a fascinating insight into a year in the life of a Victorian farmer. Proceeds go towards the work of The Farming Community Network. Read more...

What’s On

Special Exhibition at the New Forest Centre, Lyndhurst, Hants: Maps – The New Forest Unfolded: 21 January to 15 April. Discover the story of the New Forest and its people through maps chosen from the Christopher Tower Reference Library. These large- and small-scale maps illuminate not only the landscape but the individuals and institutions that shaped the Forest as it is today. Plan of Bucklers Hard
On your way to or from the BAHS Spring Conference in Cannington, you might want to detour to see the exhibition, ‘Historic Farms in Crewkerne’, which opens on 24 March at the Crewkerne and District Museum. More information will be available soon.

New Boydell & Brewer Series

Boydell & Brewer, the leading independent publisher of academic works in History and the Humanities, announces the launch of a new series, Boydell Studies in Rural History, under the editorship of Professor Richard Hoyle.
Read more... Adobe PDF icon.

Bursary Announcement

The Richard Jefferies Society has established a bursary to support work on Jefferies or related topics: highly suitable for agricultural history applicants.

Work in Progress

The Work in Progress list, formerly published in Agricultural History Review, is now nearly 90 entries, together with an online form for you to create your own entry, which will only take you a few minutes. Researchers listed here have reported contacts being made with them as a result of their entry here, making it a valuable resource.