Chapter

The shock of opposition, 1945–51

Mark Pitchford

in The Conservative Party and the extreme right 1945–75

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780719083631
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781702864 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7228/manchester/9780719083631.003.0002
The shock of opposition, 1945–51

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This chapter presents a description of a Conservative Party shocked by Labour's landslide election victory in 1945, thereafter adapting to the new paradigm, and also examines the Conservative Party's varied reaction to those right-wing groups that emerged in opposition to this new paradigm from 1945–51. It shows how the Conservative Party explicitly charged one of the departments within Central Office to investigate these outside organisations. The Conservative Party was Britain's right-wing party, and it had clear connections with the extreme right and even fascism before the Second World War. Its perception of an organisation's exact nature was not always immediately apparent. Central Office took a more subtle approach to minimise the impact of outside organisations. There was a clear difference in the Conservative Party's attitudes towards specific external extreme-right groups. A determining factor was Central Office's perception of the extreme-right group as fascist or not.

Keywords: Conservative Party; Labour; election victory; Central Office; Britain; right-wing party; extreme right; Second World War

Chapter.  14571 words. 

Subjects: UK Politics

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