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WWII on the Home Front:

There was, then, in the inter-war period a definite but not catastrophic decline in heavy
industry, and a pronounced decline in traditional exports.
In the late 1930s, a notable expansion of light industry occurred catering mainly for the home
market. Foreign trade was less…

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The Ministry of Food also organised a widespread campaign giving suggestions for wartime
Dig for victory and grow your own were just 2 of the catchphrases used by the Ministry's
Clothes were rationed from May 1941 onwards. Textiles were in short supply as materials
were in great demand…

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During 1942 coal supplies were dwindling and production was down because of a lack of coal
miners. Bevin announced that conscripts could go down the pits rather than fight. Such
recruits following ballots were nicknamed "Bevin's Boys".
With agricultural workers being gradually filtered into the forces the void was filled…

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On the home front they took a variety of jobs. Women's contributions to domestic workforce
were undoubtedly important.
Wartime propaganda highlighted women's roles in the war, such publicity was good for
Many women disliked their war work. It tended to be monotonous, poorly paid and allowed
insufficient time for…

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The Government directed the basic industries. Government commissioners co-ordinated
transport, taking over general control of the docks and railways.
Under pressure to do so from his own party, Chamberlain had invited Churchill to become
First Lord of the Admiralty. Churchill however failed to appreciate the impact of air power

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Even Churchill's harshest critics describe him as the "saviour of his country", and his decision
to withdraw the BEF from Dunkirk and to keep the RAF from fighting on the continent
certainly contributed to the country's survival.
However he did make mistakes. The Norwegian campaign is perhaps one of the…

Page 7

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The war so no economic renaissance for Britain but given the poor economic base from which
Britain started the war, the economy reacted well to the challenge.
Less doubt exists about the consequences of the war for the economy. The costs were
undoubtedly high with huge debts accumulated, large amounts…

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Entertainment was available to the public and in 1940 the government provided finance for
what was to become the Arts Council.
Cinemas kept going during the war, providing valuable escapism for up to 30 million a week.
Ernest Bevin went out of his way to provide a cheerful working atmosphere…

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Reality was different from the propaganda myths; the idea of a shared experience was not always
true. Middle class people lived away from the main centres of bombing raids.

Most of the effects of change were temporary. Many women gave up their jobs at the end of the
war, either…


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