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3 Oct 2014
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This Sceptred Isle

Ships, Cars, Conurbations, & Churchill Crosses the Floor
In 1904 the Japanese and Russians went to war over Manchuria and Korea. France had a treaty with Russia, Britain with Japan (1902). The French and British met and agreed to stay out of the war. The Russians experienced huge losses and had to send for reinforcements. These ships became fog bound off Dogger Bank and in panic the Russians fired at British fishermen. The Russians claimed that Japanese torpedo boats were hiding amongst the British fishermen. In 1904 Admiral Fisher became the First Sea Lord. He oversaw the design of the new era of giant battleships, the Dreadnought class.

Joseph Chamberlain
Joseph Chamberlain

  • Born in London but after university went to work for Nettlefold's Screw Factory in Birmingham
  • Became a Birmingham town councillor in 1868 and mayor from 1873 to 1876 finally becoming MP for Birmingham in 1876
  • Made President of the Board of Trade in 1880
  • From 1891, was leader of the Liberal Unionists
  • Became Secretary of State for the Colonies in 1895 but resigned in 1903 over tariff reform - he wanted to gain preferential treatment for the colonies
  • The first Chancellor of Birmingham University

did you know?
James Barrie's Peter Pan was first produced in 1904.

Extract From A Report On Conditions In The Inner Cities
With regard to physical degeneracy, the children frequenting the poorer schools of London and the large towns betray a most serious condition of affairs, calling for ameliorative and arresting treatment, the most impressive features being the apathy of parents as regards the school, the lack of parental care of children, the poor physique, powers of endurance, and educational attainments of the children attending school.

Nevertheless, even in the poorer districts, there exist schools of a type above the lowest, which shows a marked upward improving tendency, physically and educationally - thought the rate of improvement would be capable of considerable acceleration under suitable measures ... while there are, unfortunately, very abundant signs of physical defect traceable to neglect, poverty, and ignorance, it is not possible to obtain any satisfactory or conclusive evidence of hereditary physical deterioration ... there is every reason to anticipate rapid amelioration of physique so soon as improvement occurs in external conditions, particularly as regards food, clothing, overcrowding, cleanliness, drunkenness, and the spread of common practical knowledge of home management."

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1899Second Boer War begins
1901 Edward VII becomes King
1902Balfour becomes Prime Minister
Balfour's Education Act is passed
1903Chamberlain resigns to campaign for tariff reform
The Women's Social and Political Union is founded by
Emmeline Pankhurst
1904 The Russo-Japanese War begins
1905 Campbell-Bannerman becomes Prime Minister
The Piccadilly and Bakerloo tube lines open
1906 Trade Disputes Act is passed
1906Labour Party formed
1907 Anglo-Russian entente is formed
1908Campbell-Bannerman dies
Asquith Prime Minister
1909 Old Age Pensions are introduced

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