Slide 1 - Ysgol Rhyngrwyd IGCSE Geography

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					Unit 2B Development

Declining Economic
Prosperity (MEDC)
              We have discussed …
• … the different levels of development of various
    countries – an eg of a MEDC? LEDC? LLEDC?
•   … how different areas within countries may
    develop at different rates – e.g. of variation
    within a country? e.g. of variation within a city?
•   … how some countries have developed as
    industrial nations very rapidly and so have
    increased their level of development – e.g. NIC?
•   And now we are going at how some areas within
    MEDCs may have declining economic prosperity

 Can you think of any reasons why
          this might be?
• Why might an area’s GDP per capita go
• Why might its standard of living go down?
• Why might it’s quality of life go down?

   We are going to look at the South
           Wales Coalfields
• But first, there may be lessons to be
 drawn from what happens to the inner-
 cities that may help explain what has
 happened in South Wales, so …

       What were inner cities like?
• Inner city areas were once thriving communities
    with a mixture of land-use and rich living
    alongside poor.
•   There were shops & houses, services, community
    spirit & little crime.
•   However there were high levels of pollution –
    land, air & water.
•   Poor sanitation led to a high death rate.
•   So not a bad place to be so long as you would
    put up with pollution and poor health

  But then they began to decay
                           Decline of inner
                            city factories
    New industries
    go elsewhere                                      The rich
                                                      move out
                         Cycle of
 More decline           Deprivation
Crime moves in                                        Empty buildings

            Local authorities         Poorest left behind
             do not invest              Social problems

The South Wales Coalfields

     A history of decline
              South Wales in 1860
• Coal had been mined on a small scale in south
    Wales for centuries, but the area was still mainly
    rural until the start of the Industrial Revolution
    in the late 1700s.
•   South Wales had three very important raw
    materials that could be used to make iron.
•   Firstly it had iron ore (a rock containing iron),
    secondly it had coal that was used to heat the
    iron ore and make it molten so that the iron was
    separated from the rest of the rock. Finally, it
    had limestone that was used in iron making to
    speed up the whole process.
•   These three important raw materials were found
    close to each other. This was a tremendous
    advantage given the high cost of transporting
    heavy rocks.                                      8
• At first coal was used mainly in
    the iron industry. But South
    Wales coal was of such high
    quality that it became popular
    all over the world.
•   By the middle of the 1800s
    two major developments in
    transport provided a great
    boost to the industry.
•   In the early 1800s canals were
    used to transport coal from
    the valleys down to the dock.    • Look at the map of
•   But when rail replaced canals      South Wales and
    the industry really took off.      notice how the river
                                       valleys naturally
•   Railways from the Rhondda          provided routes down
    valley and other coal-mining       to the coast.
    valleys ran fairly short
    distances down to the booming    • By 1870, 50% of the
    docks at Cardiff, Newport and      coal was being
    Swansea.                           exported overseas.
• A rail network was built throughout Britain and
    Europe - the steam trains ran on coal and south
    Wales coal was in much demand.
•   The rail network made it easier to transport coal
    to the rest of Britain. Railways in far away
    British colonies such as India and in Africa used
    coal from Wales.
•   Ships switched from sail to steam power. As
    early as 1851 the British navy decided that
    Welsh coal was the best coal for its ships. Navies
    and merchant ships around the world used coal
    from south Wales.
•   The basic physical geography of south Wales had
    given the region a great advantage over other
    coal-producing areas. The river valleys gave
    transport routes and the steep valleys made it
    easy to mine down to the coal.
Why was there a population explosion in
            the valleys?
• Coal mining depended on hard, physical labour.
• The industry was hungry for workers.
• The boom in the south Wales coal industry
    attracted people to move to the area from the
    rural parts of Wales, but also in great numbers
    from Ireland, Scotland and England. The south
    Wales coalfield became a "melting pot" of
    different cultures and people.
•   The Rhondda valleys became the centre of the
    coal industry.
•   In 1860 they had a population of around 3,000
•   This had jumped to 160,000 by 1910.
Why was there a population explosion in
            the valleys?
• The mining valleys developed their own unique culture.
• Strong communities grew up with people sharing the
    hardships that mine work brought.
•   By and large the coal companies did little to help their
•   There were frequent disputes over pay and conditions.
•   The miners formed unions to try and look after their
    interests and improve their pay and conditions.
•   The mining communities of the south Wales valleys
    became famous for their strength, and for their choirs,
    chapels, clubs and rugby teams!
•   With the colliery on the valley floor, terraced housing
    was built close by for the workers. The shape of the
    valley meant that there was little flat land and the
    houses had to fit in where they could.
    Coal was important to industry and very
           important to South Wales
• A government report said in 1919 that: "The
    prosperity of south Wales is entirely dependent
    on the export trade in coal."
•   The industry relied on exporting 70% of its
•   The whole area, mining settlements and the
    docks, depended on coal.
•   But demand for coal was falling and there were
    few other industries in south Wales.
•   Iron and steel making, and the manufacture of
    other metals, were also in decline because other
    countries had developed their own industries.
              What happened next …
• The 1920s and 1930s were decades of economic
    depression and poverty in the coalfields.
•   There were long strikes and bitter disputes between the
    company owners and the miners. The companies wanted
    to keep up their profits but often at the expense of
    miners' wages and jobs.
•   In 1934 unemployment rates of 60% were recorded in
    parts of the south Wales coalfield.
•   People started to move away.
•   Between 1931 and 1939, 160,000 people migrated from
    south Wales to look for work in the new industries being
    developed in other parts of Britain.
•   To modernise the industry, machines were needed
    instead of manual workers. Many of the coal seams in
    south Wales weren't suited to the use of modern mining
    machinery.                                           14
Why were these reasons likely to lead
 to a decline in the coal industry?
•   New light industries
•   Ships
•   Coal seams
•   Transport
•   Other countries
•   Politics
•   Lack of government support
•   Coal for electricity
•   How people warmed their homes   15
What was the impact of mine closures?
• At its peak nearly 300,000 miners had been employed in
    the coal industry. In 1945 there were 125,000 miners
    working in 135 pits in south Wales. By the early 1980s
    that had shrunk to 22,000, and by the early 1990s to
    below 1,000.
•   Whole communities were devastated when their pit
    closed. Families lost their income and without the miners'
    wages, shops and businesses lost trade.
•   People moved away to look for work, and those who
    stayed found it hard to find a decent job.
•   Ever since the 1930s the government has been trying to
    attract new industry to the valleys.
•   The Welsh Development Agency continues this work
    today. But the valleys offer few attractions as a location
    for modern factories.
What was the impact of mine closures?
• New companies setting up in Wales over the last
    20 years or so have chosen locations near the
    M4, rather than in the narrow, built-up former
    mining settlements such as the Rhondda valley.
•   Today, the visible signs of the coal industry have
    largely been removed. Collieries have been
    replaced by supermarkets and small industrial
    units; the old slag heaps of waste rocks have
    been landscaped and planted with grass and
•   But the scars on the community are slow to heal,
    and most former mining communities face a
    range of social and economic problems.         17
How does this apply to South Wales?
                           Decline of inner
                            city factories
    New industries
    go elsewhere                                      The rich
                                                      move out
                         Cycle of
 More decline           Deprivation
Crime moves in                                        Empty buildings

            Local authorities         Poorest left behind
             do not invest              Social problems

   Of these indicator, which do you
suppose will have changed since mining
      lost its importance? Why?
•   GDP per capita?
•   Standard of living?
•   Life expectancy?
•   Crime?
•   Educational achievement?
•   General health?
•   Environmental quality?
What has the government/EU tried to
            do about it?   The multiplier

• Having a declining area is a liability for
    governments – unemployment pay, shops etc not
    paying much tax, factories/offices empty so no
•   So they try to improve things by investing in
    infrastructure (roads, shopping centres,
    upgrading houses), in grants to incoming
    business, by waiving rates during the start-up
    time etc. Improving the infrastructure also
    supplies jobs to the local, who then pay tax – and
    they have money to spend – the multiplier effect
•   By making sure the area works well, investors
    want to come in as it is a nice place to be.
How did this work in South Wales?
• The footloose high tech firms hung around the
    end of M4 motorway – near to Bristol
    (university) and close to the good road/rail
    network to London.
•   They did not want to try and squash themselves
    into the narrow valleys of the old coal fields,
    where transport was poor and land scarce.
•   But some small light industrial plants have taken
    root in the valleys.
•   However the Welsh Development Board, have
    encourages tourism – science museums and
    working mine exhibition etc and Swansea and
    Cardiff have been made more attractive to
• You have 2 exam questions – one from each Unit we have
    done this term
•   One is on production and the other is on development
•   I do NOT want you to do them as if they were an exam –
    I want you to use your notes, the PowerPoints and the
    textbooks to get as good answers as you can.
•   Edexcel are not the most clear designers of exam
    questions, so I have written some extra hints and tips
•   For example in one section of 3 parts, the first and the
    last refer to a diagram precisely – the middle one does
    not – and you couldn’t answer it if you tried to get it
    from the diagram, but the way it is worded, it is not that
    clear that you can use other ideas.
•   Count the marks – 6 marks = 3+ ideas & explanation & link
    to egs
•   If you asked for 2 things and are offered 4 marks, you
    MUST explain.

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