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GCSE History

British Depth Study 1906-18

The move for women to have the vote begins when Millicent Fawcett founded the National Union of Women's Suffrage. 1897
The Boer War revealed health problems with potential recruits. 37% of recruits were refused entry to the army on grounds of physical unfitness. In some city centres the number who failed the medical reached 90%. 1899-1902
The medical issue revealed by the Boer War was so serious that the results were kept secret until after the war. It then contributed to the debate over ‘National Efficiency’ 1900-1908
At the turn of the century there was a fierce debate about ‘National Efficiency’. The argument presented was that if Britain was to continue as the leading world power, then steps would have to be taken to ensure the health and fitness of the population. 1900
The work of Booth in London and Rowntree in York indicated that there was probably about one third of Britain’s urban dwellers living in absolute poverty 1901
The Women's Social and Political Union was founded by Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughters Christabel and Sylvia. They wanted women to have the right to vote and they were not prepared to wait. 1903
The suffragettes created a stir when Christabel Pankhurst and Annie Kenney interrupted a Liberal meeting in Manchester to ask two Liberal politicians (Churchill and Grey) if they believed women should have the right to vote. Neither man replied. 1905
The Liberals under Campbell-Bannerman took office on December 4th. 1905
General Election - The Liberals won 377 seats and the Conservative party slumped to 157. 1906
Education (provision of school meals) Act, local authorities could provide free school meals for children if their parents were too poor to do so. However, there were no funds provided to pay for them, 1906
Education (Medical Inspection) Act. This provided an annual inspection for all primary school children in an effort to counteract diseases such as tuberculosis. This act resulted in the establishment of a medical department within the Board of Education. 1907
Children and Young Persons Act (Children’s Charter) – borstals and juvenile courts introduced, buying of alcohol and tobacco by children banned and parents become legally responsible for their children’s welfare for the first time. 1908
Old Age Pensions (first paid in 1909) Non-contributory, giving 25p per week to single people over 70 and 37.5p to married couples. Income could not exceed £31, and those earning between £21 and £31 were in a decreasing sliding scale. 1908
The ‘People’s Budget’. This was designed to pay for the new Pensions and also for the building of new Dreadnoughts. It included a new tax on petrol, road tax, spirits and an increase in taxes on the very wealthy and an increase in inheritance tax. 1909
Trade Boards set up to assist workers in the ‘sweated’ industries. These consisted of representatives of employers and workers and were intended to set minimum pay levels in occupations where there was no trade union representation. 1909
Labour Exchanges were set up to assist the unemployed to find out about job vacancies. About 410 were set up. At first they were greeted with enthusiasm, there were soon complaints. 1910
National Insurance Act (part one) provided a payment of 50p a week to a person who was unable to work because of illness. For all workers earning up to £160 per year and was funded by payments from the worker 4p, employer 3p and the govt 2p. '9p for 2p' 1911
National Insurance Act (part two) was for those in industries where there was a high risk of unemployment eg. Shipbuilding, construction and engineering. This covered about 2.5 million workers. Unemployed workers were allowed 35p per week for 15 weeks. 1912
School clinics set up to provide treatment after medical inspection. 1912
Feb - The Suffragettes blow up part of David Lloyd George's house - he was probably Britain's most famous politician at this time and he was thought to be a supporter of the right for women to have the vote! 1913
Trade Union Act – Osborne Judgement reversed. This allowed Trade Unions to make a political contribution from a member’s subscription unless the member refused permission. This had been the only way that Labour MPs could be provided with a salary. 1913
Asquith introduces the Cat and Mouse Act. When a Suffragette was sent to prison, it was assumed that she would go on hunger strike as this caused the authorities maximum discomfort. The Act allowed the Suffragettes to be released then rearrested. 1913
June - The Suffragettes became more extreme. The most famous act associated with the Suffragettes was at the Derby when Emily Wilding Davison threw herself under the King's horse. 1913
By this year the School Meals Service was providing more than 14 million school meals for about 158,000 children. This even included holidays and Saturdays. 1914
The Health Insurance legislation covered 13 million people by the outbreak of WWI 1914
Almost one million people were claiming the old age pension and the cost to the exchequer was about £12 million. This was indicative of the new ‘collectivist’ role of government. 1914
Britain and Europe were plunged into World War One. In a display of patriotism, Emmeline Pankhurst instructed the Suffragettes to stop their campaign of violence and support in every way the government and its war effort. 1914
August, a massive recruitment campaign saw 500,000 men join the army in the first month 1914
August, The Defence of the Realm Act (DORA) was introduced, it gave the government special powers to take over industries or land that were needed for the war effort and to censor newspapers. 1914
September, War Propaganda Bureau established under the leadership of Charles Masterman in September 1914. The Bureau enlisted eminent writers such as H G Wells, Arthur Conan Doyle, Rudyard Kipling as well as newspaper editors. 1914
December, Air raids by German Zeppelins killed 119 people in Scarborough and hardened attitudes towards Germany. 1914
The work done by women in the First World War was to be vital for Britain's war effort. Women worked on farms as part of the Women’s Land Army, in factories making shells and ammunition and in 1918, the first Women’s Army unit, the WAAC was formed.. 1914-1918
May, A coalition government was formed. 1915
July, a munitions crisis occurs when soldiers at the front were short of bullets, bombs and shells. Lloyd George took personal charge of the production process as Minister for Munitions and had spectacular success in overcoming the problems. 1915
July, Mrs Pankhurst organised a ‘women’s march for jobs’ to recruit women to work in factories. Initially this was opposed by Trade Unions who feared women would work for lower wages than men. 1915
January, Conscription was introduced for all single men aged 18-40, and extended to all married men between those ages four months later. 1916
Many men refuse to fight for religious or other reasons, they are referred to as ‘conscientious objectors’ or ‘conchies’, some were sentenced to death or hard labour. 1916-18
1st July, the Battle of the Somme begins, 50,000 men are killed on the first day, the Battle drags on for four months with no real gains for either side prompting public criticism of the way the generals are running the war. 1916
The propaganda film ‘The Battle of the Somme’ is released and millions flock to cinemas to see it. The Evening News calls it ‘the greatest moving picture in the world.’ 1916
December, Lloyd George becomes Prime Minister after Asquith stands down following criticism of his leadership. 1916
December, Lloyd George immediately sets about reorganising all of British society to help the war effort. He sets up the Ministry of Labour to deal with the labour supply to industry and the Ministry of Food to deal with the food supply. 1916
German U-boat activity begins to take a heavy toll on imports of food and raw materials to Britain leading to shortages, 1 in 4 boats are sunk. The government use DORA to bring 2½ million acres of new farming land into production. 1917
February, Voluntary rationing introduced 1917
December, voluntary rationing fails and food prices continue to rise, compulsory rationing is introduced in London and Southern Britain with stiff penalties for black marketers, this is later extended to the whole country. 1917
November, at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month an Armistice was signed between the Allied Powers and the Triple Alliance. 1918
The Representation of the People Act was passed by Parliament this gave the vote to all men over 21 and all women over 30 were given the right to vote. 1918
December, immediately after the war a General Election was held. Lloyd-George emerged victorious after promising “a land fit for heroes to live in." And harsh punishment of Germany. 1918
Within Britain, after the initial euphoria of the end of the war, many people called for Germany to be punished extremely harshly as Lloyd George travelled to Versailles for the Peace Conference. 1918-19
Created by: mrjstacey



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