元記事:Statistics: A nation in numbers (BBC HIstory Magazine)


数字で見るイギリス社会の現代史①〜出生率〜 - 世界史を英語で学ぶ!

The striking decline of labour disputes



It won’t surprise many readers that 1926, the year of the General Strike and a long-running miners’ strike, saw more working days lost to labour disputes than any other since records began. Equally, you probably won’t be shocked to discover that a more recent peak occurred in 1984, a year that saw another high-profile miners’ strike.


You may be surprised, however, to learn exactly how much labour unrest there was before and just after the First World War: in terms of days lost, 1921 was second only to 1926, followed by 1912. This suggests that, even before the trauma of conflict, the working class were not prepared to put up uncomplainingly with their lot. In fact, it could be argued that the year in which official figures began to be collected (1891) was itself a reaction to a glut of famous disputes, among them the match girls’ strike of 1888 and the dockers’ strike the next year.



The First World War did see a reduction in unrest as the energies of the country turned to the war effort – but only up to a point. 1917, the year of Passchendaele, saw 5.6 million days lost to strikes – that’s more than 20 times the 234,000 days lost in 2019.



Since the 1970s and 1980s the labour market has been transformed in a number of ways, among them a decline in manufacturing jobs (down from 6.7 million in 1978 to 2.7 million in 2019) and in trade union membership (down from a peak of 13.2 million in 1979 to 6.4 million in 2019).



Alongside these changes, the number of days lost to strikes has fallen to a fraction of what it was three or four decades ago, with 2005 seeing a record low of just 157,000 days lost.



元記事:Statistics: A nation in numbers (BBC HIstory Magazine)


As the Office for National Statistics rolls out its 2021 Census of England and Wales, David Bradbury and Boris Starling reveal what statistics can tell us about seven aspects of British life over the past century – from immigration rates to our changing taste in baby names


The ups and downs of birth rates




The number of people being born is a fundamentally important statistic – it is, after all, one of the key determinants in the size of the population. The birth rate has generally been on the decline since the turn of the 20th century, not surprising given developments such as the huge fall in the infant mortality rate (15 per cent in 1900; 0.4 per cent in 2018) and the development of reliable contraception.


But this has not been a straight-line decline: the number of births in the UK dipped below a million for the first time in 1915 but, by 1920, had soared back up to 1.1 million, the highest on record. Why the rapid rise? Well, perhaps it was simply the effect of demobilisation bringing couples back together. Or maybe it was a conscious desire to replace the population lost in the war and Spanish flu pandemic.


Birth rates fell again when the country was plunged into war in 1939. However, on this occasion, the number of births did not continue to decline throughout the conflict – it actually bottomed out in 1941.


Famously, the postwar years saw a strong recovery, to the extent that the late 1940s through to the early 1960s became known as the “baby boom”.


In 1961, the contraceptive pill was introduced to married women on the NHS. By 1974 it was available to single women too.


In the final decades of the 20th century, birth rates fell once more, plunging to a low of 657,038 in 1977, but it has rallied slightly since, reaching a recent peak in 2012 at almost 813,000.