The Spade as Mighty as the Sword

The Spade as Mighty as the Sword The Story of the Second World War 'Dig for Victory' Campaign

PB Reissue

Paperback (03 Jan 2013)

Save $5.72

  • $12.02
  • $6.30
Add to basket

Includes delivery to USA

10+ copies available online - Usually dispatched within 48 hours


After food rationing was introduced in 1940, and German U-boats began threatening merchant shipping bringing in essential foodstuffs, the Ministry of Agriculture decided something had to be done to make the kitchens of Britain more self-sufficient.
The result was one of Britain’s most successful propaganda campaigns – Dig for Victory – encouraging every man and woman to turn their garden, or even the grass verge in their street, over to cultivating vegetables. By 1942 half the population were taking part, and even the Royal Family had sacrificed their rose beds for growing onions.
Now, Daniel Smith tells the full story of this remarkable wartime episode when spades, forks and bean canes became weapons the ordinary citizen could take up against the enemy. It had tangible benefits for the war effort in that shipping could be reallocated for munitions instead of food imports, as well as for the health of the nation in encouraging a diet of fresh fruit and veg. The campaign threw up unexpected celebrities like C.H. Middleton, whose wartime BBC radio talks on gardening reached a vast audience, and it even sowed the seeds for the modern allotment movement.
Ultimately it is a war story without fighting or killing, one that shows how even The Little Man with the Spade, in the words of the Minister for Agriculture at the time, did his bit for Victory.

About the Publisher

Aurum Press

Aurum Press

Shortlisted this year for the Bookseller Industry Award for Independent Publisher of the Year, Aurum will publish gripping world WWII dramas like The Secret Listeners (McKay’s fascinating follow-up to last year’s bestseller) revealing biographies including Banksy: The Man Behind the Wall, The Last Viking: The Life of Roald Amundsen and the paperback edition of Fred Trueman: The Authorised Biography (winner of the Wisden Book of the Year 2012 and The Cricket Society and MCC Book of the Year 2012 and shortlisted for both Cricket Book of the Year and New Writer of the Year at the British Sports Book Awards) and spectacular illustrated film books such as The Fairest One of All: The Making of Snow White.

Book information

ISBN: 9781781310427
Publisher: Aurum Press Ltd
Imprint: Aurum Press
Pub date:
Edition: PB Reissue
DEWEY: 940.5488641
DEWEY edition: 23
Sales rank: 710
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 194g
Height: 200mm
Width: 132mm
Spine width: 17mm