Sir,—It would be wisdom to recognise that the Lake District is not suitable for the raising of cereals, though grass and roots do well. This year is the second in succession in which the laudable efforts of the dalesmen to fulfil the national requirement of sparing all the land they could from their natural work of sheep-raising and milk-production have been doomed to disappointment. Their oat crop was excellent, but incessant heavy rains set in just when it was ripe, and have ruined all their hopes. I have heard of one man who hit on a lucky expedient: he took sickle in hand and cut all the heads of the grain and left the straw standing, and I write to call attention to this expedient in the hope that others may follow a good example. How far such salvage of the crop on a large scale is possible I know not, but doubtless the Agricultural Department will have their minds set on any suggestion by which, under these adverse weather conditions, what can be saved of our bread supply will be saved.
(Times, 25 September 1918, p. 10)