Labour in Scotland since 1945: Myth and Reality

Bob McLean

in The Scottish Labour Party

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print March 2004 | ISBN: 9780748617845
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748672097 | DOI:
Labour in Scotland since 1945: Myth and Reality

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This chapter considers the state of the Scottish Labour Party from 1945 onwards. At the first post-war conference of the Scottish Council of the Labour Party in October 1945, Prime Minister Atlee scolded the Scottish party for achieving the lowest regional swing to Labour, from the last peacetime election in 1935, just 9.8 percent compared with 17.5 percent in London, 11.4 percent in Wales, and 12 percent nationally. Labour in Scotland has distinctive roots, but one of its distinguishing features was its relative weakness compared with the Party in other parts of the UK. Another distinguishing and debilitating factor was the disaffiliation of the Independent Labour Party in 1932. With the departure of the 1922 generation, through death of disaffiliation, Scottish Labour MPs failed to stand out at Westminster and that is how it remained until the 1960s.

Keywords: Scottish Labour Party; political parties; Independent Labour Party; post-war conference; regional swing

Chapter.  7051 words. 

Subjects: UK Politics

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