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Describe The Effects Of The Depression On Britain In The Early 1930's

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Describe the effects of the Depression on Britain in the early 1930's A depression is a long-term economic state characterized by unemployment and low prices and low levels of trade and investment; this causes the economy of the effected country to decline. This is what happened in Britain between 1918 and 1932, Britain's economy began to slump after the First World War but the depression took real effect after the Wall Street Crash of 1929 in the USA. The Wall Street Crash caused a shockwave of depression to be sent around the world, including Britain. Britain, however, was hit in a peculiar way. The South East and Midlands experienced a sort of 'economic boom' caused by the increased amount of new industries located in those areas. In contrast the North of England and South Wales were suffering terribly with the depression and felling the full effects of the Wall Street Crash due to the increase in unemployment rates and extreme poverty. ...read more.


In addition coal was starting to be needed less, ships changed from coal to oil, motor cars ran on petrol and airplanes used aviation fuel. Overall the demand for British ships, coal and steel declined because it was being produced cheaper and faster abroad, Britain's market was being claimed by foreign competition. The depression caused rates of unemployment in Britain to rise dramatically, this huge amount of unemployment had a huge impact on the social health of British people. By the early 1930's extreme poverty had become common, 12% of the country's population was engulfed by it, this had adverse effects on standards of nutrition and millions of people were getting ill balanced diets, queuing at soup kitchens became a way of life for many as their unemployment benefits could barely cover the cost of their rent and heating let alone food or clothing. ...read more.


Furthermore as these industries did not use steam engines there was no longer any advantage of siting a factory on a coal field - electricity was available at the flick of a switch. Moreover the goods produced were directed directly at the consumer (as opposed to the traditional industries which sold ships and steel which were bought by big companies) so they needed to be close to the large centres of population to market their products, London and the South East were perfect for this. In conclusion the depression on Britain in the early 1930's had not only many negative effects but also a lot of positive effects, but these effects were separated by region. The traditional industries of the North and South Wales were severely badly affected which caused widespread poverty and poor health. Whereas there was an economic boom in the South East & the Midlands where new industries had flourished and the people were prosperous. Andreas Chace ...read more.

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