The Hardship in Britain during World War 2.

Essay by elmen27High School, 12th gradeA, May 2003

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By 1941, the Second World War had brought considerable hardship and disruption to the British civilian population. Was this still the case in the last twelve months of the war, 1944-45? Explain your answer.

By 1941, many of Britain's cities were in ruins, and her population was seemingly demoralised. London was being bombed very frequently, although many British cities were bombed throughout the war. A notable example of this is the bombing of Coventry bombing, when in a single night German bombers destroyed 100 acres of the city centre, and killed over 500 people. In addition to coping with the effects of bombing, the population of Britain had to cope with the German threat of invasion. The invasion precautions which were taken were wide-ranging, and are described below:

Everyone expected bombing, and thus plans were

made.Houses with back gardens received Anderson

shelters. Brick shelters appeared in

schools. The "Black Out" came into force at once.


night, there was no light. The near arrival of

bombers produced the wail of the warning siren. Once

the bombers had passed, there was an "All clear"


All signposts were removed along with street names (these might assist invading troops). In the event of invasion, church bells were to ring. To fight the invaders, by 1st June 1940, 5 million had been recruited into the Home Guard. Around 70,000 Germans, Austrians, and later Italians were arrested and interned in camps on the Isle of Mann.

The war brought a huge change to women's lives. Women were working on the land, in munitions factories and essentials industries. Much of the work was skilled-man's work, but women were only paid at the rate of semi-skilled workers. Despite the discrimination, women were happy. Women were proving themselves. They enjoyed having their own money; enjoyed...