Wartime Farm (2012): S01E05


Wartime Farm is a British historical documentary TV series in eight parts in which the running of a farm during the Second World War is re-enacted, first broadcast on BBC Two on 6 September 2012.


Broadcast on 4 October 2012 at 8pm. It is 1942 and the team face running the farm under increasing food and fuel shortages. The Ministry of Food has demanded an extra 840,000 tonnes of wheat be produced and, to do their part, Alex and Peter lease specialist equipment from the wartime government to turn every last scrap of ground into arable land. They also construct a ‘Horse Gin’ to slice swede, and convert a 1930s petrol-powered ambulance to run on gas from an onboard coal furnace. This leads Alex on to discover where Britain’s wartime coal supplies came from, as he experiences life down the mines as a Bevin boy.

Ruth, meanwhile, joins the Women’s Timber Corps with her daughter, Eve. Together they fell, sned and measure up a tree for the war effort. They also meet a veteran ‘Lumber Jill’ from the 1940s, who expresses her enjoyment of the camaraderie and work ethic of the Corps, despite the hard work.

‘Shorty’, the pig raised by Ruth’s Pig Club from Episode 2, has fattened up over the last six months, and is ready for slaughter. Half of the pork is split between the club members, and half is donated, as required, to the government. Ruth follows its progress right to the dinner tables of a British Restaurant (or “emergency food centre”), as she serves the boiled pork, alongside boiled onions, baked beans, with a white sauce, and plum duff for pudding, for local air raid victims and evacuees.

Wartime Farm Series

You can find a full index of Wartime Farm here.

Production & Filming Details

  • Release Date: 04 October 2012.
  • Running Time: 60 minutes.
  • Country: UK.
  • Language: English.

Video Link

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