Power and the people

  • Created by: sophie
  • Created on: 31-05-18 10:31

Magna Carta

  • When william the conquerer conquered England in 1066 he created the fuedal system to establish and maintain order
  • The fuedal system went kin then barons then knights and then peasants 
  • The fuedal system gave all the power to the king to rule the country without help or limits, the barons had very little power and were very unhappy about this 
  • 1215 - The barons forced king john to sign the magna carta; this was the first time that limits had been placed upon a king 
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Magna Carta

Henry III - King from 1216 aged only 9

Why did Henry fall out with his Barons?

  • Financial - short of money as he wasted it all on wars with france and constantly wanting more money
  • Judicial - Royal favourites recieved preferential treatment
  • Foreigners - Had too much influence in England and could exclude people
  • Sherrifs - Favoured Henry and so did not apply the law firmly or fairly
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Simon De Montfort

  • King Henry liked Simon and made him Early of Leicester, Simon would pay £100 and provide 60 knights to the king
  • Simon De Montfort chose to marry Henry's sister
  • Henry sent Montfort to take control of Gascony, French land that Henry had claim to. During this period, Montfort realised Henry was a bad leader and lots of the Barons shared this view of him
  • The barins demanded that the king was not to make decisions without consulting them
  • 15 barons became members of an advisory council
  • Henry ignored the advisory counicl and bribed them with gifts - Montfort still felt a permanent council was needed
  • Battle of Lewes: London people rebelled against Henry and handed over the city to Montfort. The King's forces took on Montfort's army at Lewes on the 14th May 1264. Bishops of chichester, london and worcester attempted to negotiate a true but Simon's forces won and the King was captured
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Simon De Montfort

  • Creation of parliament - Montfort and his second in command, Gilbert the Red, organised a new parliament. Within this parliament there was barons, church leaders, and two representatives from each town were invited
  • Day to day runningh of the country was done by Montfort, Gilbert the Red and the bishop of chishester
  • The barons began to complain that Montfort was acting like a king
  • Gilbert the Red argued with Montfort and in 1265 he met with Prince Edward (the king's son) at Ludlow
  • Gilbert the Red and Prince Edward raised an army and captured Gloucester, the dawn attack at Kenilworth took Montfort's sons by suprise
  • Montfort's army was attacked at Evesham and Prince Edwards army won 
  • Montfort's body was displayed as a warning to other against rebelling 
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Causes of the English civil war - Long term


  • 1625 -Married Hennetta Maria who was a catholic, there was concern about the religion of any children he may have and the future religion of the country
  • 1633- William Laud (Archbishop of canterbury) decided cherches were to be redecorated and issued a new prayer book in 1637
  • 1638 - Scotland was mad up of mainly puritans and it was decided that the new prayer book would also be used in Scotland. There were riots and Charles' army lost

Political and Religious

  • Earl of stafford was managing Ireland under Charles and he increased royal revenues which was good for Charles but he formed alliances with the catholics which Charles was not happy about. In 1641 he was exectutes and the Irish rebelled against this and killed 1000 protestants

Political and economical

  • 1635 - Everyone to pay ship money
  • 1639 - new tax for money
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Causes of the civil war - Short term


  • January 1642 - King bursts into house of commons and demands the arrest of 5 MPs. He looked foolish as they were not there
  • March 1642 - Parliament took control of the army as they were worried that Charles would raise and army against them

Religious and political

  • 1641 - Parliament give Charles Grand Remenstrance. Two of the demands were: parliament to choose ministers instead of Charles and to reduce the number of Bishops

Religious, political and economical

  • June 1647 - Parliament try to get more power by giving the king nineteen propositions, some included the king being unable to make decisions without parliament and parliament controlling his children's education
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Events of the English Civil War

  • Began in 1642 and ended in 1648
  • Royalists supported the king and were led by King Charles and Prince Rupert
  • Roundheads supported parliament and were led by Cromwell and Fairfax
  • Royalists march to London for battle of Edgehill both sides have 14000 men but neither side win
  • Battle of Naseby - June 1645, Charles led the royalists to retreat and surrender, he lost 5000 men and his baggae train so he couldn't raise another army dtrong enough to defeat parliament 
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New model army

  • Created in 1645
  • First fully professional army 
  • It had 22000 men
  • Fairfax was commander in chief
  • Cromwell was head of the calvary
  • Many men were veterans 
  • The soldiers had had extensive training
  • The soldiers were well disciplined
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Why did the Royalists loose the civil war?

  • The nevy supported parliament which meant they could stop supplies from abroad getting to the King's army
  • Charles left London so parliament had control of large populations and many weapons
  • After Edgehill, all major battles were won by parliament
  • Parliament had a better trained army - Cromwell was also a natural leader
  • Charles was stubborn and wouldn't negotiate, he was also a traitor against his own people as he asked the Scots to invade

What happened to Charles?

  • There were 50 judges at his trial
  • Put on trial and found guilty
  • Executed
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Oliver Cromwell

  • 1649-1658 Cromwell had more power than anyone else in Britain
  • 1649 - He took the new model army to Ireland because he had heard about their treatment of protestants in the civil war and wanted to punish them 
  • Catholic rebels at Drogheda refused to surrender and so he ordered for them all to be killed, he set alight the church they were hiding in and all local priests were killed
  • The son of Charles I led a scottish army against England but Cromwell one and Charles lived abroad in hiding for nine years 
  • All MPs who had supported the kind were not allowed in parliament after 1648
  • The 60 remaining MPs for Britain turned Britain into a republic called the common wealth and they used taxes to make themselves rich  
  • 1653 - Cromwell takes soldiers to parliament to throw out corrupt MPs out of parliament and made himself Lord protector
  • He ran the country for the next five years (1653-1658)
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Oliver Cromwell

  • The people began to want a king again and asked Cromwell if he would become their king, he refused but took on extra powers that they had offered him such as his son would become Lord Protector when he died
  • He allowed puritans a lot of power; theatres were closed, may pole dancing was banned, inns were shut and bear baiting was banned
  • He made christmas day a day of fasting and sent soldiers to remove food from people ovens and kitchens
  • 1655-57: Cromwell divided England into regions each governed by a general. These generals could lead armies against opposition, raise tax and slay enemies
  • When Cromwell died the people put Charles II on the throne 
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Extension of the franchise

Elections in the 1800s

  • Had to own property to vote
  • Took place in open air with public declaration
  • Only rich people could afford to be MPs
  • Elections held once every 7 years
  • Each country and borough had 2 MPs
  • New towns like Manchester had no MPs
  • Rotten boroughs were places where hardly anybody (around 20) people lived yet they still sent two MPs
  • Many MPs were elected unopposed
  • Corruption and many voters were threatened
  • Some lords who had big estates controlled lots of MPs
  • Pocket boroughs were controlled by a few rich individuals 
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Extension of the franchise

What did Radicals want?

  • Equal electoral districts
  • Annual parliaments
  • Every tax payer to vote

Peterloo masacre 1819

  • Gathering in St Peter's field in Manchester of people demanding the vote. It was a peaceful gathering of 60000 people 
  • Manchester magistrates panicked and called for the local military as there was no police force
  • They tried to arrest people and break up the meeting. 11 people were killed and 400 were injured

Concequences of Peterloo

  • Meetings of more than 50 people were banned
  • Tax on newspapers was increased so that working people couldn't afford to read them
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Extension of the franchise

Reform riots 1831

  • When parliament decided against reform  to give industrial towns better representation
  • Nottingham - people attacked the castle
  • Protestors arrested and exectuted
  • 70 people died in the violence
  • Something similar would happen in more towns if the voting policies did not change

Lord Grey

  • Whig MP 1786 and primeminister 1830
  • Passed reform act and abolotion of slavery
  • Wanted to engage and support the middle classes

Lord Russel 

  • MP 1813 and supported Whig party
  • Principle architect of reform act
  • Led whig opposition to the corn laws
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Extension of the franchise


  • 1 in 5 men could vote (if they owned property and earned £10 a year)
  • Seats were created for MPs in new industrial towns
  • Rotten borough seats removed
  • Middle classes were happy but workimg classes couldn't vote 
  • The country was still run by those with money
  • 73 rotten boroughs remained
  • Voting was still public
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  • Men who were weavers saw their wages cut and unemplyment increase after the introduction of machines
  • Chartist movement began peacefully, signatures and petitions
  • When their petitions were rejected they changed their motto to 'peacefully if we can, forcefully if we must'
  • The 6 points for their charter: men over 21 should get the vote, secret ballot, MPs should be paid, MPs don't need to own property, equal voting constituencies and an election every year

Moral force chartism

  • Led by william lovett
  • Held mass meetings in glasgow and large cities 
  • Hijaked anti-corn league
  • Sent petitions to parliment with 1.2 million signatures 
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Physical force chartism

  • Led by Feargus O'connor 
  • Speeches became more and more threatening
  • He called for general strike
  • He was determined to remove those who were keeping working class people down

Why did Chartism fail?

  • Lack of single leadership
  • Poor coordination
  • Different aims
  • Different classes and funding
  • Loss of support
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Women's suffrage

Why did women want the vote?

  • They had few civil or political rights
  • They had to obey all the laws made 
  • They were considered thei husbands/fathers/older brothers possesion and they wanted some freedom


  • Speak publically in a non-violent way
  • Create petitions and leaflets
  • Pilgrimage from carlisle to london
  • Refuse to pay taxes
  • By 1914 - 500 branches and 100000 members
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Women's suffrage

WSPU (suffragettes)

  • Lead by Emmeline Pankhurst
  • Heckle MPs
  • Smash and slash paintings
  • Bombs
  • Chain themselves to gates 
  • 200 of them were arrested
  • Derby horse race 1913 -  Emily Davison killed by horse 

Cat and mouse act

  • When imprisoned, suffragettes went on hunger strike
  • Couldn't be force fed as it was dangerous
  • Women would be released when they became too ill and then had to return to prison w=once they were well enough again
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Women's suffrage


  • Women worked in munitions factories as bus conductors and police
  • Worked alongside men and joined armed forces as cooks, nurses and drivers
  • Land army work was done by women who volunteered to do their bit
  • Attitudes towards women shifted as they proved that they could do what men thought they couldn't

1918- Women over 30 get the vote

1928 - Women over 21 get the vote

1968 - Women strike at the ford factory for equal pay

1967 - Abortion act

1979 - Thatcher is the first female PM

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Causes of the peasants revolt

  • Peasants were villeins
  • 1350 - 1/2 of the population had died from the black death
  • 1351 - Edward II passed a law called the statue of labourers which limited the pay for peasants and craftsmen and prevented them working for the highest paying employer
  • 1360 - John Ball, a priest, said that all people were born equal which inspired the peasants 
  • Peasants and rebels blamed the King's poor decisions on his advisors
  • 1377 - Poll tax of 1 shilling was introduced for everyone over 14
  • Bampton (tax collector) attempted to arrest those who refused to pay 
  • Villagers, led by Baker, rioted
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Events of the peasants revolt 1381

  • Rebels marched on London - Leader of the Essex rebels was Jack Straw
  • 7th June - Kentish rebels ask Wat Tyler to be leader
  • John Ball had been imprisoned but the rebels had freed him and he preeched to them 
  • Rebels were joined by many people from London and sent letters round the countryside calling for people to join them 
  • 13th June -Gates of London opened for the rebels
  • Rebels enter city and attack houses of Richard's advisors including Sudbury (the Archbishop of Canterbury)
  • 14th June - Richard went to miles end to meet the rebels who demanded the abolition of serfdom. Richard agreed. During this meeting Sudbury was beheaded
  • 15th June - Richard went to meet Wat Tyler at Smithfield. Wat Tyler demanded that all men should be free and equal. Walwroth (mayor of london) attacked Wat who then died
  • The peasants trusted all of Richard's promises and went home
  • Richard went back on his word
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Effects of the peasants revolt

  • Leaders of the revolt were killed 
  • John Ball was hung, drawn and quartered
  • King went back on his word - serfdom was not abolished
  • Advisors to the king were replaced
  • Unpopular taxes abolished and king stopped fighting the french
  • Within 70 years, all villeins were free
  • King Richard was killed 19 years later and replaced by henry IV
  • No government tried to collect poll tax until 1990
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Causes of the American revolution

  • Since the 16th century, britain, france, spain and the netherlands had colonised america
  • Colonists were rebelling against British rule and fighting for indpendence
  • Navigation act 1651-73: Prohibits colonies from trading with any country that isn't Britain and only British imports were allowed 
  • Proclamation 1763: Colonists told by British that they can not expand to the west, they did so anyways 
  • Sugar act 1764: Tax placed on goodsbut colonists protested 'no taxation without representation' and smuggled goods
  • Stamp act 1765: Tax on pronted and paper goods causing protests by a group called the sons of liberty 
  • Townshend act 1767: Tax on glass and paint
  • Boston Massacre 16770: Smowball fight escu;ates and british fire on colonists killing five
  • Tea Act 1773: Lowered tax on British tea and a monopoly given to east india trading company to stop the colonists illegally smuggling tea
  • Boston tea party 1773: Three tea ships arrive and 2000 locals ant it to leave withought paying. 60 sons of liberty board the ship and throw £10000 worth of tea off the boat
  • Intolerable acts 1773: British close boston harbour until money for the lost tea is pais, town meetings are banned amd british military take control of boston
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Consequences of the American revolution

Long term

  • Increased participation in politics
  • Growth and diffusion of the population
  • Ended merchantist economy
  • New opportunities in trade
  • Society less aristocratic
  • No civic equality for women

Short term

  • Creation of state constitutions
  • New market and trade relationships
  • 60,000 loyalists left the country
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Workers movements

Combination acts:

  • Groups of workers combined together to protect wages and status
  • Prevents combimatiom of workers
  • Trade unions try to maintain wages
  • Luddites - use force to protect status

Swing riots:

  • Began with the detruction of machines and became a widespread uprising by agricultural workers 

Friendly societies:

  • Groups of skilled workers to put pressure on employers
  • Avoided restrictions of combination acts
  • They could give out sick//unemplyment payments for up to a year and payments to widows
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Workers movements


  • Tried to combine workers of all trades all over the country
  • Emerged in the 1820s/30s
  • Strength and majority in London
  • 16000 members 
  • Flourisged in 1834
  • Failed due to differences and poor leadership. The task of uniting all working people in the country was too much 
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Tolpuddle Martyrs

  • Wages were low and kept getting cut
  • 6 men grouped together and made an oath of alligiance 
  • They met with their emplyers to ask for a wage increase
  • Magistrates responded by issuing warrants for their arrests as they met in secret and made an oath which is illegal
  • The prison chaplin told the men they were lazy 
  • They were sentenced to seven years transportation and hard labour in Australia 
  • People heard about their punishment and unfair treatment and set up campaigns to get them bought home
  • 4th March 1836, all 6 men given free and full pardon
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Trade unions in the 20th century

NMTUs - new model trade unions

  • SIngle craft unions
  • Respectable and skilled workers
  • Avoid strike action, used discussions and meeting to settle disputes
  • Most head quarters were in London so had easy access to Parliament 
  • It cost 1 shilling a week to be a member
  • 35000 members in 1870
  • The cooperation of trade unions led to the creation of the trade unions congredd in 1968
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Trade unions in the 20th century

Were they a success?


  • Funds could easily be raised to support strikes
  • Small unions held power of emplyers
  • Large strikes could be held
  • Coordination between unions made strikes more effective (TUC 1868)
  • Acts passed to reduce time for women and children workers
  • Strikes spread across unions


  • Workers continued their ten hour day
  • Laws used to weaken trade unions
  • Only represented the most skilled and wealthy workers
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Trade unions in the 20th century

New unions 1880s

  • For non skilled workers
  • Low subscription
  • Growing sense of working culture in industrial areas
  • Used strikes

Why join a trade union?

  • Fight against poor pay
  • Social identity-meet people of the same background and working life
  • Demanding for better conditions like less hours and higher wages
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Matchbox strike


  • Poor pay - 70 hours for 5 shillings a week
  • Dangerous - 'phossy jaw' could lead to tumours and death
  • Made to sign to say that they were fairly treated 


  • Annie Besant helped girls to formulate demands and published reforms
  • Took 50 girls to meet MPs and demand a fairer wage
  • Organised a union


  • After 5 weeks the mployers had given into most of the girls demands
  • It was the first time unskilled and unorganised women had won a strike
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Dockers strike 1889


  • 12000 labourers for 5000 jobs
  • Were being paid half of what they should have been


  • 22nd August: whole of London port at a stand still
  • Pickets stopped people not on strike from going to work
  • Processions and mass meetings everyday
  • Sympathy strikes all over London


  • Food relief handed out 
  • Late august - £30000 arrived as a gift from Australian trade unions so that the strike could continue
  • Strike kept going and employers agreed to most demands eventually
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Trade union key terms

New model union: New type of union set up of highly skilled men who paid weekly supscriptions. If they went on strike their employers would suffer

Workers guilds: Established in medieval times to control prices and wages as business owners worked woth employees in small workshops so conditions were good and wages fair

Luddites: Group which fought against changes in new technology in industry. Often broke machinery as a tactic to stop factory owners interest in technology

GNCTU: Grand national consolidated trade unions 1833 to bring all workers under one organisation

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General strike 1926

Build up

  • 20th century - coal powered all technology and was Britain's biggest industry
  • Britain's coal mine owners were rich and enjed wealth bought in by coal trades 
  • Coal mines had very bad conditions
  • Miners federation of GB was a strong union

Triple alliance

  • Unions of key workers - raliway men, dockers and transport workers
  • 1914 - The main unions join together to support the miners in disputes
  • Conflict grew between employers and workers


  • Jobs wages and prices all went up
  • Coal was needed for the war effort so the government took control of the mines and the miners pay
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General strike 1926

Crises of 1925

  • Hit british coal industry and exports went down
  • Mine owners told miners that their wages would be cut to what they were before the war and they would need to work longer hours
  • The miners used the slogan 'not a penny off the pay, not a second on the day'

Deals with TUC

  • Represented all workers in unions and they want mines nationalised
  • Conservative government was worried about strike action so made a deal
  • 'Red Friday' 31st July 1925 - government agree to subsidise miners wages for a year

After a year the subsidisation stopped and the TUC called a strike in favour of the miners

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General strike 1926

9 days in May

  • 2.5 million on strike
  • TUC not as planned as the government
  • Daily mail editors refuse to print antistrike material
  • Government pull out of talks with TUC

Government tactics

  • 9 months soent planning for this strike
  • Daily meetings
  • Daily newspaper called 'the daily british worker' set up organisation for the maintenance of supplies and to train volunteers as strike breakers


  • Government ministers make speeches on radio but refued to let union/labour leaders make speeches
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General strike 1926

Strike grows

  • Stronger with each day
  • Workers from other sectors join in in support of the miners
  •  Mainly peaceful although there was clashes with the police
  • Public transport stopped

Betrayal of TUC

  • Leaders of the TUC don't want to be traitors
  • Secretly met with SIr Herbert
  • TUC made a deal of miners wages to be protected
  • TUC called off strike on 11th of May
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General strike 1926

Strikes Continued

  • Deal for miners pay was not followed by the government
  • Miners strike for 7 more months but poverty and hunger force them back to work
  • Lower wages than before

Government pass trade dispute act in 1927 making it illegal to strike causing 500,000 to leave unions

Why did the TUC end the strike?

  • Didn't want revolution
  • Couldn't control it
  • Economic situation was bad
  • Too close with government ministers
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King John and the Magna Carta

Magna Carta limits the King's power and gave more power to barons which prevented tyranny as no one was above the law

Mistakes King John made

  • Exectuted his nephew Arthur
  • Made tax on inheriting land ten times more
  • Threatened barons if/when they refused to pay tax
  • Built up army to attack rebel barons and end the magna carta

The magna carter had 63 clauses

  • Economical - fair taxes for barons and not seizing crops without paying
  • Inheritance tax was set at £100 for barons and 100 shillings for knights
  • Religious - Church was free
  • Political - no widow forced to marry and a council of 25 barons was chosen
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Magna Carta and the Barons War 1215-1217

  • The pope agreed with King John that no one could overule the divine right of a king
  • He excommunicated the barons from the church
  • Prince Louis was sent messages from english barons offering him the throne if he helped them to get rid of King John
  • King John confiscated barons land and property which led to a civil war in september 1215- march 1216
  • Prine Louis arrived in May and advanced across the country
  • John marched with his army to rebel held land, his baggage train was caught and his supplies and treasures were taken
  • John spent the night in Swineshead abbey and died the next day from eating too much or being poisoned 
  • Barons crown King John's son Henry III as king on 28th October 1216
  • Magna Carta reissued 
  • Louis went back to france, negotiated peace for the barons and dropped his claim to the throne
  • Barons war ended 1217
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Magna Carta - Success or failure?


  • Limits power of monarchy ensuring that no one is above the law
  • Gives 'free men' right to a fair trial
  • Ideas of liberty that have infulenced the declaration of independence (USA) and human rights legislation (UN)


  • Charta only applied to free men and most men were not free
  • Most clauses only affect the barons and those that are well off 
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Magna Carta - Success or failure?


  • Limits power of monarchy ensuring that no one is above the law
  • Gives 'free men' right to a fair trial
  • Ideas of liberty that have infulenced the declaration of independence (USA) and human rights legislation (UN)


  • Charta only applied to free men and most men were not free
  • Most clauses only affect the barons and those that are well off 
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Pillgrimage of Grace


1531 - Henry VIII's break from Rome and the catholic church

  • Pope wouldn't give him a divorce from Catherine of Aragon
  • He wanted to marry Anne Boleyn and have a male heir
  • Protestant ideas spreading from europe
  • Henry was short of money and church land became an attriactive asset

Dissolution of the monastries

  • They represented the pope's authority in Britain 
  • They looked after the poor and sick 
  • Henry closed them for power authority and wealth

Economic causes

  • Bad harvests of 1535 and 1536
  • Increased taxes and food prices
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Pillgrimage of Grace



  • Break with Rome and closure of monestries upset catholics
  • Suppression of catholic traditions
  • King's divorce and Princess Mary declared illegitimate

Henry's Rule

  • Cromwell's seizure of church property
  • Hery's reaction to 'Lincoln Articles'
  • 100 death sentences issued
  • His marriage to Anne Boleyn undermined King's authority as she had reputation for withchcraft
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Pilgrimage of Grace 1536

Lincolnshire - October 1536

  • Lasted a fortnight
  • Local clergy encouraged it


  • Led by Robert Aske
  • Spread quickly
  • Army of 50000 men gathered in the North
  • King's forces were outnumbered, soldiers lacked equpiment and desire to fight
  • Rebel forces were more experienced
  • King turned to diplomacy and negotiated peace through Duke of Norfolk
  • King promised free pardon to those who dispersed
  • Went back on his word and executed 200 rebels
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Pilgrimage of Grace 1536

Why did it fail?

  • Communication - leaders believed Duke of Norfolk
  • Henry VIII - His army could have been easily beaten however he outthought and outmanoevured them
  • Rebel leaders - Had more men than the king but listened to Henry's calls to disperse and they were too ready to accept promises from the king
  • The pilgrimage of Grace was a serious threat to Henry's rule and most levels of society became involved in solving the problem
  • Not soley based on religion
  • It was a total failure and nothing was achieved, the pilgrims only accelerated the changes they were seeking to stop
  • All the monestries were closed immediately
  • No one dared oppose Henry
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Anti-Slavery Movement


  • Inhumane treatment of people on religious and morale grouns
  • 80000 slaves were taken a year from Africa in the 1780s
  • 1783 - Captain of Zong who threw 130 sick slaves overboard and excaped murder charges as slaves were property


  • Collect evidence
  • Letter and articles in newspapers
  • Teams of lecturers toured the country collecting signatures and support
  • Books and poems
  • Boycott of shops


  • Slave trade act 1807
  • Slavery abolition act 1833
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Anti-corn law league


  • 1815 corn law - taxes on imported corn to stop people buying foreign cheaper corn
  • Workers spent the majority of their wages on bread


  • One issue group made them united and focussed
  • They had the non-violent support of the middle class
  • The chartists bought up motions in parliament to get the law scrapped
  • Meeting of 5000


  • Annual votes in parliament 1837-1845
  • Support increased and poor harvests decreased
  • Law repealed in 1846
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Factory reformers


  • Poor factory and working conditions
  • Poverty
  • Average life expectancy in industrial cities - 19
  • New poor law 1834 meant that unemplyed people had to go into the workhouse


  • MPs debated and put foward bills in parliament
  • Strikes and sabotages were encouraged
  • Papers were written on the importance of children in education not factories


  • 1840 - Children's commission set up
  • 1842 - Mines Act
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Minority. rights

Migration to England after 1945

  • The country needed rebuilding after the war
  • 1950s -1970s: 15 million people come in from the commonwealth
  • Polish settle in england instead of returning to communism
  • NHS recruit nurses in the Carribean
  • London transport plan - 1956 to recruit 4000
  • Windrush bought 492 people from the west indies
  • By 1958 - 210000 people from the commonwealth lived in Britain
  • Most migrants lived in Brixton/Nottinghill

Life for immigrants

  • Difficult to find houses as no one would sell to them
  • Had to share houses with other migrant families
  • Faced racism
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Minority rights

Racism on increase 1960s

  • 1964 election - Labour lost seat to racist conservative

Expectations and reality for migrants

  • Thought they'd be welcomed 
  • Instead old air raid shelters were opened up for them to live in
  • Some skilled worker found jobs electricians/RAF/railways
  • Most people hated the migrants and 'no blacks' signs were common in pubs, shops and hotels
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Minority rights

Acts of parliament

  • 1948 - Nationaluty act
  • 1962 - Commonwealth immigration act (limits number of migrants)
  • 1965 - Race relations board set up
  • 1968 - Race relation act
  • 1971 - Immigration act
  • 1976 - Comission for Racial equality

1987 - Four non-whote MPs elected

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Brixton riots 1981

  • Relations between the black community and the police in brixton were strained
  • There was a house fire in 1981 in which 5 black youths died from a white racist attack and police did nothing
  • There was high unemployment of black people and they had the poorest housing
  • 10th April 1981: a young black male was seen by police running from crime scene bleeding from being stabbed and he was shoved in the back of a police car and made to wait whilst they dealt with the situation before being taken to hospital - he died
  • 11th April 1981: Stop and search of a car as part of operation swarm led to police cars having bricks thrown at them and houses being set on fire, 100 vehicles were destroyed and 300 people were hurt
  • Independent police complaints authority set up in 1985 to handle complaints
  • Riots in brixton 1985 and 1995
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