1945 and All That: the Conservative Campaign

RGS History


The Conservatives made what must have looked like the pretty straightforward choice: Churchill would win the election. The manifesto kind of sums it up: Mr Churchill’s Declaration of Policy to the Electors. It’s actually worth a look, you can find it here.

The convention is that campaigns don’t change a lot. Certainly, opinion poll evidence shows Labour had a healthy lead from 1942 on. Having said that, watch Churchill on the stump.

Perhaps his clumsiest moment was the so-called Gestapo Speech.

“I must tell you that a socialist policy is abhorrent to British ideas on freedom. There is to be one State, to which all are to be obedient in every act of their lives. This State, once in power, will prescribe for everyone: where they are to work, what they are to work at, where they may go and what they may say, what views they are to…

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