The National Farm Survey, 1941–1943

The National Farm Survey was created during the Second World War to increase food production and to plan for post-war agriculture. Maps and forms of this ‘Second Domesday’ give details of over 300,000 farms, and record farmers and agricultural practice across England and Wales.

You can visit the National Archives Farm Survey webpage here

The National Archives has announced that it will digitise the National Farm Survey (MAF 32 and MAF 73) in full, thanks to a generous grant of £2.13 million from Lund Trust. The project began in October 2023 and will finish in March 2027, with teams from across The National Archives working on the conservation, digitisation, transcription, cataloguing, and publishing of the records. More information about the project’s progress and first image release will be published later this year.

The 1941 National Farm Survey is one of the most comprehensive records of land held in the collections and is a window in time on the UK’s agriculture and land use in the middle of the Second World War. Containing extensive data on over 300,000 English and Welsh farms, the survey is among the most-requested record series at The National Archives.

Currently, the complex filing of the paper record makes it difficult for readers to order and use, with the records only available in physical copy. This project will digitise the series in full and create a new digital cataloguing arrangement to make each farm searchable online.

It will not only make the survey permanently and freely available, but will also improve its accessibility and searchability.

Genealogists, family and local historians will be able to consult the series for their own research, and the project will lay the ground for new analyses by historical economists, geographers and ecologists.

Please note that this content was not originated by FCELH but it has been posted here because it may be of interest to members and others interested in English local history. For any queries please contact:

The National Archives
Kew, Richmond

Enquiries about the project can be directed to Jack Butterworth, Head of Grants and Funding, by emailing

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.