• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Great Depression and effect on Britain

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What were the effects of the Wall Street Crash on Great Britain? This all began with the Wall Street Crash in the United States, it quickly turned into a worldwide economic collapse. Largely due to the fact that United States had emerged from the First World War as the major creditor and financier of post war Europe, while other national countries had been weakened by the war, because of the Wall Street Crash the United States called up in their loans to other countries and put up custom barriers to stop import of foreign goods. As historian John Child said 'the Wall Street crash was the final nail in the economic coffin for Britain.' The collapse led to a crisis in the liberal economic system, with nations creating barriers to protect their home markets from foreign goods, which cuts world trading. The heavy industry was hit the worst. They were the industries that created the foundations of Britain's economy. ...read more.

Middle

George Orwell described life for the unemployed in Northern England as 'several hundred men risk their lives and several hundred women scrabble in the mud for hours... searching eagerly for tiny chips of coal in slagheaps so they could heat their own homes. For them, this arduously-gained 'free' coal was more important almost than food.' Since the unemployment pay was paid through taxes, the government had increased the taxes and also had cut the unemployment pay by 10%. By 1931, they had created a 'mean test' for those who wanted to receive the dole money (unemployment pay). The mean test involved an official visting the person's home to check if they are receiving any sort of income. Historian J. Stevenson mentions 'Alongside the pictures of the dole queues and the hunger marches must also be placed those of another Britain, of new industries, prosperous suburbs and a rising standard of living.' The government was spending 2 million pounds a day, which was more than what they had available. ...read more.

Conclusion

The high unemployment rates throughout Britain meant that prices were kept low, people with regular wages were able to buy more for less. Four million new houses were built in the 1930s. An income of 200 pound a year was enough to own a house, mortgages were easy to get and interest rate was low. The cost of cars were halved, and people who work could afford new houses with electricity. D.H. Aldcroft mentions 'the nation generally was better fed and clothed, and was housed in better conditions than those prevailing before the war.' The War Street Crash was not the only factor to be blamed for the depression in Britain, as it is not one single factor that is entirely responsible for the depression, we can say that the Wall Street Crash was just a catalyst for the events. Not only did it have many negative effects but also a lot of positive effects, but these effects were separated by region. The traditional industries of the North were badly affected which caused poverty and poor health. However, there was an economic boom in the South where new industries had increased and people were well off. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate History section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate History essays

  1. Architectural Masterpieces in England

    The Maze was planted in 1702. It still attracts people from all over the World, and every year thousands of them are happy "to be lost" in it. IV.2. Buckingham Palace Buckingham Palace is the London home and primary residence of the British monarch.

  2. The North, The South, and Slavery

    Many newcomers voted Democratic (older citizens thought they were radical) v. Secret societies to combat the "alien menace" 1. Originated in NE, spread to west, then South 2. Native American Association (1837) a. Held PHILA convention and formed Native American party b.

  1. Was there continuous economic decline in Britain during the second half of the twentieth ...

    The British car industry, who had a dominant position in the 50's, ran into difficulties in the 60's with the rise of imports from Europe and Japan. There was low productivity because the person-hours required for manufactured products was more important in Britain than for foreign competitors.

  2. The Effects of the Great Depression on Canada.

    Schools: The education suffered greatly, as school budgets were cut across the country. Some of those schools neither had electricity nor running water, heated wood stoves and lanterns were some of the things they tied to provide light. Sometimes, water was gotten from an outdoor pump.

  1. The Great Depression in the USA.

    crash only took place six months ago, I am convinced we have now passed through the worst -- and with continued unity of effort we shall rapidly recover. There has been no significant bank or industrial failure. That danger, too, is safely behind us."

  2. WWI. The Effect of Total War on Britain

    When wars happen, usually, each country has an internal political change. This happened in the United Kingdom that underwent drastic political differences during the War. First of all, Britain went from being a constitutional government to a full democratic state by 1918.

  1. To begin to understand how the Great Depression came about, it is essential to ...

    The Federal Reserve which served as the nation's watchdog of the economy had the power to set interest rate for loans issued by banks. During the twenties the "Fed" set low interest rates to encourage more installment spending; however, in 1929 the Fed worried that growth was too rapid so

  2. The Effect of Polio on Franklin Delano Roosevelts Life

    Roosevelt's close confidante Howe said, "I'm not going to mention the word 'paralysis' unless I have to. If it's printed, we're sunk. Franklin's career is kaput, it's finished." Finally when it came out into the pubic, that he had polio, the doctor assured the press that it was a mild case and that he hadn't been crippled.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work