Children during World War Two
To save the younger generation from being reduced, the government organised a programme called evacuation. As well as children being evacuated, pregnant women and parents with young children were also evacuated out of towns and cities. However, not every child was evacuated. Many children who lived in inner cities were evacuated to the countryside. A large number of children were evacuated in 1939, but were then taken home again when not much bombing happened. Another wave of children were evacuated in 1940.
Was evacuation a sucess?
- Many children were evacuated to other parts of Britain, however the government did try and evacuate children overseas. This was stopped, however, when a boat was sunk by a German airplane, killing many children in the process.
- Some children enjoyed being evacuated as it seemed like an exciting adventure (some children in inner cities had never seen the countryside!). However, some children were very homesick and there were reports of people abusing their evacuees.
- People in the rural areas were shocked by the evacuees as they were usually from poor stricken areas and there were differing manners between people in the city and people in the countryside.
- Unfortunately some children enjoyed evacuation too much! Some children had got so used to country life and their carers that it was a shock when they had to return home when the war was over.
- A good thing about evacuation was that it gave children time away from their parent's influences, and they gained more independence and freedom.
- Rationing improved children's health.
The results of evacuation
Many people belonging to the Conservative party didn't believe that child poverty was a minor issue or that it didn't exist. However, evacuation opened a door to the realisation of child poverty, as many of the evacuees who came from the inner cities were dirty, skinny and were possibly unwell (some evacuees didn't know how to use a toilet!). Evacuation exposing child poverty as a problem in Britain was partly a reason why Sir William Beveridge drew up ideas for his idea for a new Britain. After the war the new Labour government created the Welfare state, which would try and make Britain a more equal society. From Beveridge's proposals, children would stay in school until they were 15, and from then on either go to a grammar or a secondary modern school, or possibly get a job. Family allowances also made sure that families were not living in extreme poverty. Furthermore, the creation of the National Health Service meant children were able to have free healthcare and be generally healthier than the previous generation.
Children in the 1950s
Before the second world war, young people were usually expected to copy their parents in terms of style appearence and behaviour. However, during the 1950s, a number of things began to transform young people's lives:
- TV - The first TVs were manufactured in the 1950s so then people could watch the Queen's coronation. However, TV would play…