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Pubs and PatriotsThe Drink Crisis in Britain during World War One$
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Robert Duncan

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781846318955

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781846318955.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 18 October 2021

Best Laid Plans? Lloyd George and the Drink Question

Best Laid Plans? Lloyd George and the Drink Question

Chapter:
(p.67) Chapter Three Best Laid Plans? Lloyd George and the Drink Question
Source:
Pubs and Patriots
Author(s):

Robert Duncan

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781846318955.003.0003

This chapter aims to detail the gathering crescendo for some form of action to be taken on the drink issue. As the war progressed, its pressures had increasing repercussions on the home front. The expenditure of shells and arms on an unprecedented scale increased pressure on Britain’s industrial infrastructure. Adjusting to this demand for military hardware was a difficult task and the type of war being fought accentuated the problem. Britain’s factories, whilst simultaneously having to deal with a large amount of its experienced workforce joining the army, could not cope with demand. Blame had to be placed somewhere, so it is unsurprising that the industrial working class bore the brunt of accusations regarding degenerate behaviour. During this period Lloyd George and King George V spoke about how important the drink issue was to the war effort. In an important speech Lloyd George criticised workers’ drinking habits and his actions suggest that he wanted a ‘national conversation’ to occur on the issue. This was the period during which the ‘severity’ of the drink problem was finally realised by society.

Keywords:   Bangor speech, Lloyd George, King George V, Drink pledge, Munitions, Defence of the Realm Act (DORA), Drink taxation, Nationalisation, State Purchase

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