The British Film Institute presents the best global cinema on-demand:
From classic and contemporary films to the best of the BFI National Archive.

Devonian Farm Life in Wartime Heanton
Devonian Farm Life in Wartime Heanton

Devonian Farm Life in Wartime Heanton 1940


This film is certified

Please confirm that you accept our terms of use.


Devonian Farm Life in Wartime Heanton 1940

10 mins United Kingdom

Step back in time as our Heanton farmers gather the hay harvest. Shire horses plough the fields and prepare the ground for crop planting, mechanised and traditional methods are used to ensure yield. British farmers had to meet the demands of the Ministry of Food during the Second World War. Rationing became part of 1940s life and included farming communities. This film portrays farm life at a time when pressures to increase production were growing.

The Second World War had a vast impact on agriculture and production methods throughout Britain. The Ministry of Food was formed on 8 September 1939 and became the sole importer and buyer of food into Britain, guaranteeing farmers an increasing market for home-grown produce. The goal was self-sufficiency. Recruitment for the Women’s Land Army began in 1940 under the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries with at its peak 80,000 members. Together with the Women’s Timber Corps they helped meet growing home demand not just for food but also oil, materials, metal and wood.

The South West Film and Television Archive (SWFTA) is the regional film archive for the South West of England. Established in 1993, SWFTA's core collection comprises of the combined programme libraries of Westward Television and TSW (Television South West). The archive also cares for a significant number of donated film collections, both amateur and professional, dating back to the early 1900s.


Amateur film


1940s Louisiana State Penitentiary


Dig for Victory




United Kingdom



Read lessRead more
Part of

1,000s of beautifully preserved films, capturing 120 years of Britain on Film

The map


View All

Welcome to a new subscription service like no other.

>100s of hand-picked classics and critically-acclaimed films

>Critic Mark Kermode picks a must-see film every week

>No contract, cancel anytime

Cookies Policy

This website uses cookies, as explained in our Cookies Policy.

To accept the terms and hide this message please click 'I accept'.

I accept

Passionate about film? So are we…

Don't miss the email made for the in-the-know film fan:

New releases — on the same day as in cinemas Special collections & unheralded classics Exclusive news on discounts

Never ask | Ask me later