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16 October 2014
Social Change: Employment 1945 to 1979

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Aberdeen boom city

Photograph of Aberdeen harbour.

Aberdeen harbour

Aberdeen is situated on the North Sea coast, between the River Don, to the north, and the River Dee, to the south. In the 1970s there were two events which had a huge impact on this city. The first was the oil crisis of the 1970s and the second was the discovery of oil just 100 miles off the coast in the North Sea.

The oil crisis led to a huge rise in worldwide oil prices and this made extracting oil from the North Sea an attractive opportunity for international oil companies. This was to make Aberdeen into a boom city and have a huge effect on people and their way of life.

Advert for a helicopter company.

Advert for a helicopter company

During the North Sea oil boom of the 1970s, Aberdeen became the centre of the North Sea oil industry and a major supply centre for North Sea oil platforms. The oil boom provided jobs and financed the construction of housing, offices and new schools throughout the city.

Income from the harbours and the port of Aberdeen increased fifteen times in the 1970s and the 1980s. Aberdeen's main harbour was continually improved, enlarged and modernized. In addition to the oil industry and the many companies which provided services for the oil companies, other industries included chemicals, fertilizers, papermaking, machinery manufacturing, shipbuilding, granite quarrying, fishing, and the processing of fish.

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