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Type: Thesis
Title: 'You can’t make owt from nowt': official responses to the impact of unemployment upon the community in the Lancashire weaving area in the early 1930s.
Author: Hall, Ellen
Issue Date: 2009
School/Discipline: School of History and Politics
Abstract: This thesis argues that the official responses at the national level to the impact high unemployment had upon the community in the North East Lancashire weaving area in the early1930s were barely adequate. The Lancashire cotton industry had been in depression since the early 1920s, long before the Great Depression affected the rest of the world, and the high unemployment and the low wages paid in the cotton industry had a disastrous effect on an area almost totally dependent upon that industry. Financial conservatism during the Great Depression meant low benefits, and these low benefits resulted in widespread poverty. I argue that in contrast to the national government’s response, local authorities in North East Lancashire set a reasonably high standard of care in their area. They cared for those in need: children, the elderly and the sick and made medical care and education available for children with disabilities. They provided maternal and child welfare clinics, a school medical service and a school meals service. They were also vigorous in housing inspections according to Housing Acts and Public Health Acts. Based on a closely detailed study of local authority records and National Government Education and Health records, this thesis demonstrates that poverty was widespread; the national government was dilatory in recognising regional variations of long-term structural unemployment which in the Lancashire weaving area was slow to diminish, and that local authorities‟ responses, while ample, could not address the problem of poverty in the area adequately without further funding from central government.
Advisor: Drapac, Vesna Maria
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.) - University of Adelaide, School of History and Politics, 2009
Keywords: unemployment; Lancashire; The Depression; poverty; modern Britain
Provenance: Copyright material removed from digital thesis. See print copy in University of Adelaide Library for full text.
Appears in Collections:Research Theses

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