Impact of war

  • Created by: Fin174
  • Created on: 30-11-15 19:33

Life in Britain before WW1

Britain had a very big Empire

If you were poor you had no access to healthcare, even upper class would die from illness

Liberal government had been helping poor people

Very few people were concerned about war

Britain thought that if there was a war we would win quickly

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Lower class

Lower class

  • worked as servants
  • only went to primary school
  • poor
  • manual jobs
  • very few moved to middle class
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Middle class

Middle class

  • educated
  • owned land and property
  • made their money through business and othe professions
  • had servants
  • proud
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Upper class

Upper class

  • nobles
  • lots of servants
  • wealthy inherited
  • educated
  • didn't work
  • owned land and property
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Boer War


'Scramble for Africa' - European countries trying to take land, especially in Africa, for their empires

Britain's aim was to have a line of unbroken territory that ran from the North to the South of Africa

Orange Free State & Transvaal - The boers were white farmers that lived in these areas, they spoke Afrikaans which is similar to dutch - They didn't want to be par of the empire

Phase 1 - initial british setbacks - The boers seem to be winning the war, they inflicted defeats in the british

Phase 2 - british victories - british recieve reinforcements, boer army defeated. War is popular witht he british - 1900 conservatives won power

Phase 3 - Guerrilla warfare - boers use hit and run tactics, not fighting proper battles - use underhand means - scorched earth policy - burned crops, livestock & houses. Concentration camps, british gathered civilians in one area

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Boer war


When people are in basic conditions with a lot of people it is the perfect place for diseases to spread. When the world and British people heard about these camps there was an anti-british feeling.

In 1902 the boers surrender

The treaty of Vereeniging was signed in 1902

  • Orange Free State and Transvaal go to the british
  • britain agree to pay reparations for damage done
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Boer war


people were discussing why britain hadn't won the war so easily and thought that the quality of soldiers was lacking in some way

In 1902 an army general said 60% of all british men wouldn't pass an army medical

1903- governemnt sets up a commitee to investigate why this is - commitee on physical deterioration

Nation efficiency - britain needed an efficient workforce and that would mean improving things for poor people

3 recommendations

  • school children should have medical inspections
  • very poor should recieve free school meals
  • mothers should be taught how to look after children
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Liberal reforms - children


no real systems - some charities helped poor families with children; orphans were looked after in the workhouse system

measures taken: 

allowed free school meals - 1906-every local education authority set up school medical service - 1907-made illegal to insure a childs life - 1908-courts and prisons for young people - 1912-schools provided clothes

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Liberal reforms - the old


charities; families; the workhouse system

measures taken:

1908 - goverment funded old age pension, five shillings per week - anyone who had an income of over £31 per year didn't qualify for a state pension. in the first year 650,000 people collected their pensions

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Liberal reforms - the sick


charities; families; the workhouse system


workers and their employers had to pay a small amount of each weeks wages. the worker recieved up to 26 weeks of sick pay at 10 shillins a week, there was also free medical care

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Liberal reforms - the unemloyed ot underemployed


handouts from the local community; voluntary labour exchanges (job centre)


unmeployed could sign on to a register where they would find out about available work. by 1913 labour exchanges were puttin 3000 people into jobs everyday. worker, employer and the government payed for benefits when unemployed

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propaganda and censorship in ww1

propaganda: limited, one-sided information aimed to persuade people to support certain ideas and people

censorship: control by the government of the spread of information (in the media, letters, films and newspapers) that might be useful to the enemy or damage public morale

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civilian attitudes to war in august 1914

  • many people had sympathy for belgium
  • most were convinced it would be a short victorious wasr - over by christmas 1914
  • government propaganda and censorship successfully stirred up hatred of the germans
  • some people had a glorified view of the war as they hadn't experienced the horrors
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3 main reasons attitudes changed

  • heavy casualties
  • stalemate
  • lack of volunteers led to conscription
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propaganda and censorship in ww2

ministry of information -

  • set up on the 4th september 1939 - day after the war started
  • purpose to increase morale, maintain public support, inform people with instructions for emergencies (bombs etc.)
  • due to conscripton id didn't need to encourage recruitment
  • initially, the ministry didn't want to exaggerate victories or defeats but the ublic found this boring
  • they tried to inject humour and slogans into their posters
  • mass observation - agents would report to understand the mood of the public

propaganda posters had 3 main aims:

  • attract attention
  • communicate their message cleary
  • imprint themselves in people's memories

the aim of the poster is to get people to look after weapons and also demonise the enemy

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propaganda and censorship in ww2 (pt.2)

dig for victory - grow your own food

make do and mend - make clothes from old things that arent used anymore

  • in ww2 the government has emergency powers for censorship
  • newspapers had to check their stories with the censor before they could publish
  • the BBC censored itself as it wasn't controlled by the government.
  • George VI was the king during ww2
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experience of air raids and bombing in ww1


  • airships filled with hydrogen
  • began to make bombing raids from january 1915
  • they could fly at 4,600 m - above fighter planes
  • main target was london
  • there were 51 zepelin raids between 1915 and 1916

people used a searchlight on the ground to find zeppelins in the air

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experience of air raids and bombing in ww2

bombing civilians - put pressure on the government to surrender - population in constant fearof a sudden and violent death - if the government didn't surrender the population would take to the streets and riot and overthrow the government

trekkers - people who lived in cities that then left the city and slept in woodland and thn returned the folowing morning

london can take it - american film - biased

the blitz - 43,00 were killed - 1.4 million people were made homeless - london was not the only city bombed - most cities were

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impact and consequences of the blitz

why? - hitlers plans to invade britain failed - started bombing cities to destroy industry and morale

the blitz - may 1941 hitlers attention turned to the soviet union - raids stop - every major town and city was attacked

preparations - even before ww2 britain believed hitler would bomb it; luckoly the radar was invented in 1936 - by 1939 air raid prcautions were already in place

enforcement - air raid precaution wardens (ARPs) - one per street - could be prosected if you broke the rules - some people thought they were too intense - ministry of information kept people informed

regulations - blackout, anderson shelters, safe room, morrison shelters, gas masks - compulsory

effects - effects were devastating, high explosive incediary bombs - britain could take it - over 60,000 civilians were killed - 250,000 homes were destroyed

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