Lloyd George's Post War Coalition 1918-22 was a success

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Immediate Post War Problems

  • Churchill successfully demobilised 5m troops without major a unemployent problem in 1919-1920.
  • LG formed a ministry with Tories like Balfour, Liberals like Churchill and new men such as Fisher, Geddes and Mond.
  • LG set up new ministries to deal with new problems, e.g. Ministries of Health and Transport.
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The Economy

  • The Economy was fairly rapidly moved from a wartime to a peacetime basis.
  • Controls over prices and rents; the rationing of food gradually disappeared.
  • The railways and coalmines - taken over by the State during the War were returned to private enterprise and the railways reorganised into 4 large companies for greater efficiency.
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Industrial Relations

  • A dangerous climate of industrial realtions in 1919-1920 were defused by the use of ...
  • Special powers e.g. the Emergency Powers Act,
  • By stalling e.g. The Sankey Commision 1919 to head off a coal strike
  • And also by appeasment e.g. higher wages for police.
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  • LG's government tried to reduce the deficit and pay off war debts by major cuts in Govt spending.
  • The Geddes Axe - though reduced by LG- cut £64m off spending.
  • The misery of unemployment was eased a little by extending National Insurance to cover most workers earning below average wages. 
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  • LG's government brought in major reforms.
  • Addison's Act 1919 led to over 200,000 good quality council houses being built at modest rents for the working class.
  • Fisher's Education Act raised the school leaving age  to 14 and promised part-time continuation education to 18.
  • Old Age pensions were extended, pensions for the disabled and for war widows brought in and the NI scheme extended. 
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The Irish Problem

  • Taken out of British politics.
  • Ireland was partioned in 1920 with the Ulster unionists, getting their own state of Northern Ireland, and Sinn Fein getting virtual independence for most of Ireland by the 1921 Treaty.
  • NI remained in the UK, the Free State left the Union but remained within the British Empire as a Dominion.
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In Foreign Policy

  • LG attended over 20 international conferences and played a key role in redrawing the boundaries of Europe and the Middle East.
  • He lessened the harshness of French demands on Germany.
  • He secured control of Middle Eastern oil for Britain.
  • He acquired control of most of the Middle East, strengthening British control of the Suez Canal and the routes to India.
  • The Washington Naval treaty helped prevent a new Naval Race thus adding to World security.
  • In the Empire LG moved India along the road to self-govt, with his 1919 Government of India Act.
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