City of Manchester in the Great War (Kindle)
The war touched almost every aspect of life on the Home Front, and those who were left behind suffered terribly. This book meticulously explores the problems, hardships and grief faced by Manchesters people and takes a detailed look the unfortunate areas that were hit the hardest.
Throughout Britain, industry declined and wages suffered; prices of food and fuel rose sharply; essential foodstuffs and coal were hoarded for the black market; soldiers families doubled up with others, which caused severe overcrowding; housing and sanitation improvements ceased; there were epidemics of measles, chicken pox, influenza and TB; German U-boats tried to prevent supplies reaching Britain; and Zeppelin airships attempted to destroy British trade and industry.
Manchester City suffered greatly because of its cotton trade, its industrial output, and its proximity to Liverpool, but its citizens were determined not to let the Kaiser win. This book documents how they fought back by living in a twilight world of black outs so that enemy airships would miss their targets; how they accepted emergency rationing of food and coal, and restrictions; and how they worked tirelessly in the nearby cotton mills and munitions factories, and dug for victory on their allotments. Overall, the people of Manchester were united in their grief over the sad loss of life on the fronts. This grief broke across class barriers and saw debutantes and mill girls, alike, take comfort in each other.
City of Manchester in the Great War tells the remarkable story of the spirit of a city whose citizens refused to give in, who strived to fight the odds that were stacked against them.
As featured inThe Great War magazine, November 2017