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Life was hard for the working class at the beginning of the 20th centuryIn 1906 a Liberal government was elected and they introduced a number of reforms. In 1908 an act limited miners to working an 8 hour day.In 1909 the Trade Boards Act set up trade boards who fixed minimum wages in certain very low paid trades. In 1908 an Old Age Pensions Act gave small pensions to people over 70. In 1911 the National Insurance Act was passed. By 1912 most people had Saturday afternoon off work. In 1909 the House of Lords rejected Lloyd George's budget. In 1897 local groups of women who demanded the vote joined to form the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies (NUWSS). In 1918 women over 30 were allowed to vote. Women over 21 who owned a house or were married to a house owner were allowed to vote. In 1928 universal suffrage was introduced. Afterwards anyone over the age of 21 could vote.In the 20th century Socialism became a powerful movement. Britain declared war on Germany on 4 August 1914. In 1916 the British launched an attack on the Somme. In 1917 Germany began unrestricted submarine warfare. In the Spring of 1918 Germany launched a series of offensives in northern France. From 1923 to 1929 Britain had a conservative government with Stanley Baldwin (1867-1947) as prime minister. During the 1920s old industries like coal mining were decliningIn 1927 the Trade Disputes Act made general strikes illegal.In 1929 the world was plunged into a severe economic recession. During the 1920s and 1930s a series of 'hunger marches' were held from depression areas to London. II WORLD war began on 3 September 1939 it was feared that the Germans would bomb British cities causing great loss of life. The Labour party also nationalised certain industries (made them state owned). Coal was nationalised in 1947In 1980-82 Britain suffered a severe recessionMeanwhile in April 1992 the Conservatives won another general election, In 1997 Labour finally won an election and Tony Blair became prime minister.
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