The Repeal of the Corn Laws 1846

What the repeal of the corn laws was, what happened and the outcomes

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  • Created by: Caitlin
  • Created on: 19-03-13 20:04

The Repeal of the Corn Laws 1846

  • Corn Laws put in place 1815 to ban import of foreign corn
  • BAD because bread price was high, distressed working class
  • FOR REPEAL industry would be stimulated, more competetive farming, free trade abroad encouraged
  • AGAINST REPEAL a flux in cheap foreign corn would ruin British farmers, Britain dependent on foreign corn, manufacturers reduce wages being selfish
  • Peel (leader of the Conservatives) said he wouldn't repeal the laws in 1841 but in 1845 there was serious famine in Ireland. Government response was demanded.
  • Peel drew up Bill to suspend Corn Laws so grain flowed more freely into Ireland
  • This in 1846 shocked Conservative landowners who said it was a betrayal
  • Agriculture was the largest single industry economicallyfailing to protect it = betrayal
  • Fierce debate in House of Commons -> 2/3 of conservative party revolted and left
  • Disraeli and Bentinck led attacks on Peel - Disraeli put on the map
  • Repeal passed in Commons, only with Whig support
  • Peel reseigned, never held office again
  • Peels supporters became Peelites
  • SHOWED THAT middle class triumphed over aristocrats, free trade was emphasised, Conservative Protection Policy dropped
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