Social tensions 1951-64

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The Social impact of immigration and Race Riots

Britain's history within the empire had linked them to multiracial countries within the Commonwealth, such as people from the West Indies. 

There were clear public fears that immigration could cause too many new citizens into the UK at the same time. 

Many immigrants arrived on and after The Empire Windrush, this caused a massive social change within Britain. 

By 1958, there were 210,000 commonwealth immigrants within Britain.of these were  75% male

There were tensions within Urban areas of Britain, where there were a lot of immigrants (this is where the jobs were), many people within the British public feared they were taking their jobs. 

Mosely (fascist leader) went on to exploit these tensions by printing rascist leaflets, made by his so called unionists. 

The government, however, felt differently about immigration. They believed that it would help stimulate Britain's economy. (Immigrants would work for lower pay than the British.)

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Immigration and race riots cont..

In 1958, there were massive race riots, Notting Hill being the most famous. 

The amount of immigrants coming into the country soon sped up and the government decided they needed to do something about it. 

The Commonwealth immigrants Act 1962, this limited immigration through work permits. Labour party clearly disliked this act.

There was racism from British people, however there was also the attitude of just getting on. 

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Notting Hill riots 1958

It was started in August, in Notting Hill.

This led on to a weekend of violence within Nottingham. 

A week later, there was a mass outbreak of violence within Notting Hill (it had a large concentration of Carribbean immigrants) 

The main problem was landlords exploiting people within overcrowded and bad housing. 

It began with white people attacking people from the West Indies, it then turned to the other way around. 

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Violence, Criminality and Hooliganism

People feared that immigration would cause an increase in crime. 

There was often inaccurate reports of immigrants causing crime, which made this fear even worse. 

By 1950's, Teddy Boys (Edwadian fashion, long coats, narrow trousers), these would challenge their ideas about social norms. These were seen as part of the social norm. 

During the war, there were a huge rise in crime (because of the black out), but beginning of 1950's there was a decline in crime. 

Mid 1950's, however there was a crime wave. 

Mods and Rockers and The Kray Twins became prominent figures within the 50's. 

The 'mods and rockers' did not have organised crime, they were just trying to rebel and cause problems. 

Their style caught a lot of attentions - Rockers wore leather and rode mothercycles and mods wore smart suits.

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violence and hooliganism cont...

Rioting between mods and rockers in Brighton 1964, caused mass national attention. 

The fighting went on for 2 days. 

The public panicked. 

People couldn't understand the rise in crime, as it was a time of prosperity, and a time where national service was still going on. 

National service was bought in 1947 and eventually abolished in 1960. It meant that men had to be in the army for 2 years. 

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Secondary Education

In the 1950's there was the system of the 11+ in secondary education, this would decide whether you went to a grammar school or secondary modern school. 

In 1944 Education Act, the triartite system was bought in, this tried to give equal status to grammar schools, secondary modern schools and technical schools, however grammar schools were still seen as superior. 

Many saw the 11+ as a waste of human potential and did not give everyone the same chance in succeeding. 

Anthony Crosland (shadow education minister) began coming up with a new system, comprehensive schools. 

Boyle, the education minster 62-64, wanted new ideas to change the system. 

In 1962, the government issued the Robbins Report, this led to a rise in higher education. 

Many people believed that comprehensive schools would bring about better economy and a farier system. 

In 1964, it was clear that education was becoming an issue. 

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Changing attitudes to class

In 1951, Britain was a conformist society, who respected authority. 

Class loyalties were still very strong. 

In the late 1950's, it was clear that the Class system was breaking down. 

The rise of CND made opposing authority become more of the norm. New trends were also leading to a less conformist society. 

People were becoming less likely to follow the establishment (aristocracy, barristers and judges). 

Most of the Establishment, believed it was who you knew that mattered, for example going to Cambridge or Oxford would get them where they wanted to go . 

The Labour party had battled against the idea of the class system (closer to socialism). 

The Profumo Affair showed how the class system was changing. 

1965, at Churchill's funeral peopl believed it would be an Establishment affair, however it was clear that the times were changing. 

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Changing attitudes to culture and Media

In the early 1950's the media had respect for authority, and most radio programmes and TV programmes showed this, however this began to change as the social tensions began to change. 

1962 A Clockwork Orange was published showing the issues of gang culture. 

In 1962, That was the Week that was, was first shown, showing the probelms going on. 

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