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Describe the effects of the blitz on everyday life in Britain.

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Introduction

Describe the effects of the blitz on everyday life in Britain. T he Blitz was the sustained and intensive bombing of the United Kingdom by Nazi Germany during 1940-1941. The bombing of England, Wales (Swansea) and Scotland (Clydebank) inflicted the British community as a whole, and devastated families. During the Blitz there were many heavy air raid attacks on many different industrial towns and it is imperative to understand that London wasn't the only town that was bombed. For example Coventry was severely hit by the deleterious bombing on November 14th 1940 and the city was demolished, 554 people were killed and around 865 civilians were injured. A report on Coventry referred to "great depression...a widespread feeling of impotence and many other sign of hysteria". The air raids in the East End of London killed 430 civilians and seriously injured a further 1,600 and left people homeless. In total over the blitz, over 43,000 civilians were killed, 46,000 injured and more than 2 million homes destroyed and damaged, with an immense amount of damage caused to the industrial areas. People were left stunned as there was shortage of water, gas, electricity and disruption of telephone communication lines. In fact in the opening nine months of the Blitz 1,400,000 houses were destroyed or damaged. ...read more.

Middle

Any railway line more than 50 feet was deemed safe from being bombed. Another slightly unorthodox means of protection was through what was known as 'trekking'. Trekking involved leaving your house every night in order to walk to safer areas such as fields. This type of protection was prominent Clydebank and Southampton. Trekking was unofficial and the government believed that trekking was something that should not be encouraged. The reason for their way of thinking was because they thought it was a sign of weakness. The blackout was part of the ARP (Air Raid Patrol) regulation, which intended to hinder the German bombers in the air. Houses, businesses and all buildings had to cover their windows so as to not allow any light to be shown. The blackout was dangerous for the fact that there were no lights in open areas. So there were no streetlights, no crossing lights and all vehicles traveled with one dimmed light, which was facing downward. However once the Germans started using incendiary bombs the blackout became far less effective. Evacuation was a key reaction to the outbreak of war and affected both those in the city and those in the country; Britain was divided into three regions, 'evacuation areas', 'neutral areas', and 'reception areas'. ...read more.

Conclusion

Women too had to also adapt to a new way of living as most of the men were away fighting, thus the women developed new roles. However, women were expected to still continue their role as housewives in spite of working in the civil defence or munitions factories. There was a growing amount of female employment, and new jobs were created for them such as messengers who recorded bombed places and passed information on; or nurses who aided the injured and kept the morale up. ARP's were also quite important as they checked for enemy aircrafts. The genuine aim of the Blitz was to destroy morale and in some cases it succeeded and in some it failed. Some people had lost all hope and turned to looting and thieving. Others questioned whether Great Britain could win and a minority of people wanted to surrender. However looking at it with a less pessimistic view you could say it brought social solidarity between the urban and rural classes. Although this is a highly debateable subject as some people don't agree with it. Till today the Blitz's legacy in some ways still runs on. In some peoples opinion there is increased awareness due to evacuation which led to reforms that benefited the poor. The blitz's legacy also left post war housing problems. Also there were many emotional difficulties which some people still face till today. ?? ?? ?? ?? Page 1 of 2 10A 10A ...read more.

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