Royal Support For Areas Of High Unemployment
30st January 1936
An exhibition opened at Charing Cross Underground Station on the Special Areas. These were zones of especially high unemployment in the North and Wales, mainly dependent on coal-mining, which had been designated by Act of Parliament in 1934. Even though the rest of the country was slowly pulling itself out of its economic problems, conditions in the Special Areas had not improved much since the depths of the Depression. London, then as now, was the most prosperous part of the country and part of the exhibition's goal was to bring home to them how fortunate Londoners were. It was a cause close to the new King's heart and he had written a letter of support for the exhibition before his accession. In 1929 he had toured the coal-mining areas of Durham and Northumberland, expressing sympathy for the miners and horror at their conditions. The whole visit and his comments had been deplored by Lord Londonderry, a government minister and major mine owner.