The rise of global history has been a major development in historical studies in recent years, with the history of globalization a central part of that. But did the global matter as much to people in the past as to historians now? This article addresses that question with reference to Britain as viewed through some neglected aspects of the life of the botanist Sir Joseph Banks (1743–1820). He is usually remembered for his extensive global preoccupations. Yet his ability to be a citizen of the world, most famously on Cook's first voyage of exploration, rested on his considerable landed wealth. Indeed, as the years passed, he became more interested in improving both his own estates and the wider region, especially his beloved county of Lincolnshire in England. There, global pressures exerted some indirect influences, but local ones, especially environmental and legal, remained more important, often addressed by resort to parliamentary legislation.