This chapter describes the decline of the coal mining industry and its impact on North Wales miners in the early twentieth century. The industry struggled with the world-wide industrial depression which reduced the demand for coal. Districts supplying the home market, while spared the misfortunes of the exporting districts, had to contend not only with the fall in demand for their own output but with competition from hard-hit exporters searching for buyers at home for coal they could no longer sell abroad. As stocks piled up at the pit-heads, work, even for those with a job, was so irregular that in some coalfields as many as sixteen weeks were lost during the year. For more than 300,000 miners there were no jobs at all. Since 1920, while the miner's output had increased by over 50 per cent, his wages had been reduced by over 50 per cent and he worked a longer day.
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