The Bomfords of Worcestershire


Extract from The Bomfords of Worcestershire by Dr Bruce Bomford FRCS, Salford Priors, 1983.  The work was published privately and only a few copies were made.  Re-published here with permission from Dr Bomford's sons.

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In 1927 Douglas Bomford wrote a paper entitled “Corn in England.”  This publication produced reasoned argument for a system of rotation of crops whereby wheat output in the British Isles might be increased three or four fold.

Appointments held by Douglas:-

1. President of the Institute of BritishAgricultural Engineers 1955/56.

2. Chairman of Bomford Bros., Pitchill.

3. Chairman of Bomford and Evershed Ltd., SalfordPriors.

4. Member of the Ministry of Agriculture’s Machinery Advisory Committee.

5. Member of the Machinery Committee of the N.F.U.

In his address as President of the Institute he traced the development of steam power which displaced the horse, and pointed out that tractors then replaced steam, but many farmers refused to accept the inevitable change.  He pointed out the need for careful planning in the application of power to the land.  Our mechanisation in no way approached finality.  Labour has been taken from the land and redistributed.  He concluded by pointing out the part the Institute played in the design and development of new machinery, its uses overseas and how farmers have helped in modifying machines to serve their needs.

Douglas with Hosier developed the first hydraulic lift plough.

He also designed the first sprout planting machine.

He worked closely with Colonel Philip Johnson of Roadless Traction on the perfection of the half-track tractor as a cheaper and equally efficient version of the crawler.  And in conjunction with F.W. McConnel he invented the “harvest thresher”, which removed the grain from standing corn leaving unbroken headed straw, ideal for thatching.

He invented many other aids to horticulture and agriculture.

In a tribute to Douglas after his death Sir Laurence Watkinson wrote that he was sure that quite a share of the credit for our food survival in the last war should go to Douglas Bomford.


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