Social Democratic Party (UK)
The Social Democratic Party was a centrist political party in the United Kingdom. The party supported a mixed economy, electoral reform, European integration and a decentralized state while rejecting the possibility of trade unions being overly influential within the industrial sphere; the SDP was founded on 26 March 1981 by four senior Labour Party moderates, dubbed the'Gang of Four': Roy Jenkins, David Owen, Bill Rodgers and Shirley Williams, who issued the Limehouse Declaration. Owen and Rodgers were sitting Labour Members of Parliament; the four left the Labour Party as a result of the January 1981 Wembley conference which committed the party to unilateral nuclear disarmament and withdrawal from the European Economic Community. They believed that Labour had become too left-wing, had been infiltrated at constituency party level by Militant tendency whose views and behaviour they considered to be at odds with the Parliamentary Labour Party and Labour voters. For the 1983 and 1987 General Elections, the SDP formed a political and electoral alliance with the Liberal Party, the SDP–Liberal Alliance.
The party merged with the Liberal Party in 1988 to form the Social and Liberal Democrats, now the Liberal Democrats, although a minority left to form a continuing SDP led by David Owen. The origin of the party can be traced back to the ideological divisions in the Labour Party in the 1950s, but publicly lies in the 1979 Dimbleby Lecture given by Roy Jenkins as he neared the end of his presidency of the European Commission. Jenkins argued the necessity for a realignment in British politics, discussed whether this could be brought about from within the existing Liberal Party, or from a new group driven by European principles of social democracy. There were long-running claims of corruption and administrative decay within Labour at local level, concerns that experienced and able Labour MPs could be deselected by those wanting to put into a safe seat their friends, family or members of their own Labour faction. In some areas, the Militant tendency were held to be systematically targeting weak local party branches in safe seat areas in order to have their own candidates selected, thus become MPs.
Eddie Milne at Blyth and Dick Taverne in Lincoln were both victims of such intrigues during the 1970s, but in both cases there was enough of a local outcry by party members – and the electorate – for them to fight and win their seats as independent candidates against the official Labour candidates. In Taverne's case, he had been fighting efforts by the Lincoln Constituency Labour Party to deselect him over his support for British membership of the European Communities. In October 1972 he resigned his seat to force a by-election in which he fought as a Democratic Labour candidate against the official party candidate. Taverne won by an unexpectedly large margin, he founded the short lived Campaign for Social Democracy thereafter, wrote a book about events surrounding the by-election called The Future of the Left – Lincoln and After. But the CFSD failed to gain nationwide support, Taverne lost the seat at the October 1974 General Election; some independent Social Democrats contested the October 1974 and 1979 General Elections, but none were elected.
Taverne's Lincoln by-election campaign was helped to a lesser degree by problems with the Conservative and Unionist Party candidate, Conservative Monday Club chairman Jonathan Guinness. His suggestion during the by-election that murderers should have razor blades left in their cells so they could decently commit suicide resulted in him being nicknamed "Old Razor Blades" during the campaign. This, combined with considerable Conservative grassroots disquiet over the Monday Club's links to the National Front, persuaded some Conservative voters to switch to Taverne in protest as much as tactically to ensure Labour suffered an embarrassing loss. On 25 January 1981, leading figures from the Labour Party launched the Council for Social Democracy, after outlining their policies in what became known as the Limehouse Declaration. In March it was renamed the Social Democratic Party; the "Gang of Four" were centrists, who defected from the Labour Party due to what they perceived to be the influence of the Militant tendency and the "hard left" within the party,"Democratic", "Democratic Labour", "Radical" were all mentioned as possible names for the new party, as well as "New Labour" but "Social Democratic" was settled on because the "Gang of Four" consciously wanted to mould the philosophy and ideology of the new party on the social democracy practised on mainland Europe.
The opening statement of principles contained in the preamble of the party's constitution stated that: "The SDP exists to create and defend an open and more equal society which rejects prejudices based upon sex, colour or religion". The constitution set out the establishment of a "Council for Social Democracy" which was, in effect, the party's standing conference; each area party was entitled to elect delegates to the CSD. A number of internal groups
Oakley is a village in Fife, Scotland located at the mutual border of Carnock and Culross parishes, Fife, 5.4 miles west of Dunfermline on the A907. The village was built in connection with the Forth or Oakley Iron-works, now all gone along with the colliery industry; the iron-works, which ceased production many years ago, had six furnaces, with stacks 180 feet high, the engine-house was built with walls to comprise 60 cubic feet of stone below the surface of the ground. Subsequent to the Iron Works the buildings were used as a sawmill producing rough timber for railway sleepers, fence posts and the like. Comrie Colliery closed in 1986, the village took many years to recover from this major employer's demise. Amenities include: 3 parks, one of, attached to the local community centre in the north of the village and has astroturf sports pitches available to the surrounding areas. Two burns merge in the Oakley and Comrie Burns, providing another scenic walking area; the Oakley Burn, which runs right through the middle of the village, splits Oakley in two.
There are adequate religious establishments. The church was built in 1956–58 for Roman Catholic miners who moved from Lanarkshire to work in the more prosperous coalfields of West Fife; the Oakley Parish church is a smaller church for those of Protestant denomination and is used for various activities aimed at all ages. The village is made up of a wide variety of housing with modern schemes in Comrie. There is a pub, The Greyhound Bar, in the centre of the village, a Social Club on the main A907. There is a small industrial estate to the north of the village, providing some employment around the area. To the south lies Inzievar House once visited by Jules Verne, now converted into flats. There is a thriving broad wood industry operated by Scottish Woods in the estate. There were two primary schools situated in Oakley, one Roman Catholic named Holy Name, the other Inzievar primary; however a new building has been built which houses the library and both schools. This building is now Oakley Campus.
Oakley Health Centre provides a wide and comprehensive programme of health care including a dental surgery, podiatry clinic, physiotherapy clinic, cardiology unit. The library is situated within the Oakley Campus. Information resources including community information and reference materials are available, as is access to the internet. Stagecoach run the services 74, 74a and 74b which run often from the new Dunfermline Bus station from around 5.30am until around 23.45 pm. Fife Place-name Data: Oakley
Saline is a village and parish in Fife, situated 5 miles to the north-west of Dunfermline. It lies in an elevated position on the western slopes of the Cleish Hills. At the 2001 Census the population was 1188, a decline from the 1235 recorded in the 1991 Census; the village has a parish church and a golf course. The glen runs from the bottom of the main street through to neighbouring Steelend; the civil parish has an area of 8,757 acres. A weaving centre, Saline was not much redeveloped during the 19th and 20th centuries as the expansion of industrial mining in west Fife passed it by; as a result, Saline contains a sizable number of listed buildings 18th century weavers' cottages. The village is dominated to the east-north-east by Saline Hill, 359 meters OD, with a hill fort on the eastern summit; the smaller hill to the south of east at Bandrum has a standing stone on the peak. Thomas Bonnar the Edinburgh architect was born here. Gazetteer for Scotland entry Saline Primary School website About Saline at Fife Council
Crossford is a village in West Fife, Scotland. It is situated one mile west of Dunfermline, east of Cairneyhill, astride the A994, at 56°03′51″N 03°29′47″W; the village has mixed housing with large housing estates on northwest ends. Most residents work commute to Edinburgh or Glasgow, it is two miles north of the Firth of Forth and seventeen miles from Edinburgh. The village sits on the main bus route X24, X26, X27 from Fife to Central Glasgow's Buchanan Bus Station. Bus routes 9 go to High Vallyfield and Stirling. Bus route 89 goes to St Margarets Hospital in Dunfermline and to North Queensferry. Dunfermline Town rail station is 2.5 miles away. Crossford Primary School was built in 1973 replacing the old school, located on the North side of the A994 half way between Cairneyhill and Crossford; the school has ten teaching areas in a semi-open plan arrangement, plus a separate nursery class. There is a grass playing field for football and other sports. At the park there is a Scout hall. On the Main Street, the Village Hall is used by a variety of organisations including.
The highlights of the social year in Crossford are the Children's Gala events held over the year to raise funds for the November Fireworks and the Gala Week, with daily events, each June. The Children's Gala has been held since 1955 and is organised by the Crossford Gala Committee for children from the village. Businesses in the village include: Pharmacy and Post Office, hairdresser, beauty salon, chip shop, with garage, fireplace sales situated to the east; the Adamson Hotel known as The Pitfirrane Hotel is in the centre of the village and is one of the few original Coaching Inns left in Scotland. The Keavil House Hotel stands in 12 acres of grounds to the west of Crossford and its meeting facilities and health club with swimming pool are an amenity for the village and surrounding area. Crossford boasts the King George V Memorial Park playing fields, opened in 1950 by the Countess of Elgin; the land was gifted by the Halkett family of the Pitfirrane Estate. The community itself paid for the establishing of the facilities together with a Major Fiddes of the National Playing Fields Association.
New sports facilities in King George V Memorial Park were unveiled on 8 May 2005. The floodlit, all-weather multi court was proposed by Crossford Recreation and the Environment, will be used by schools and the community for five-a-side football, basketball and netball. To the southeast of Crossford the Dunfermline Golf Club has an 18-hole golf course; the Halkett family owned the Pitfirrane Estate until 1951, living in the Pitfirrane Castle which has become the clubhouse. Crossford is an ideal centre for walking. Numerous pathways radiate from the village, to Dean Woods and Milesmark in the north, to Pitliver and Limekilns/Charlestown in the south, to Cairneyhill in the west and to Pittencrieff Park at Dunfermline, in the east. To the north of the village, near Dean Woods, there is a paved cycle track which extends from Dunfermline to Clackmannan. Crossford can trace its history back into the distant past with Bronze Age discoveries having been made on Craigs Farm indicating agricultural activity into antiquity.
Crossford is said to take its name from the ford crossed by monks on their way between the abbeys of Dunfermline and Culross. and together with the early agricultural activity this seems to form the main part of the activity in the village. In the 16th century the village found a new life as coal and ironstone were mined from the lands of Pitfirrane under a charter granted to the Lairds of Pitfirrane by Queen Mary; the produce of this activity was transported down the Waggon Road to Limekilns for shipping via the port there. The Halketts enjoyed a privilege to ship free of duty to all foreign lands until 1788 when the government purchased the right for £40,000; the uppermost 4 inches and lowermost 2 inches of ironstone were said to be of such high quality as to be suitable for the making of cannon, the produce was shipped to the Carron Company ironworks for that purpose. The introduction of the Turnpike Act in 1796 brought about the installation of a tollbar on the Waggon Road; the building housing this still exists on the crossroads in the centre of the village.
At the beginning of the 19th century, it is recorded that some 50 handlooms were in use in the village with a population of 380 persons. This follows a pattern in the area for such weaving communities, another example being Gowkhall a few miles North; the Earls of Elgin owned land in the Crossford area in connection with the Elgin Colliery and the Elgin Railway that ran from the colliery round Crossford and down beside Waggon Road and on to Charlestown harbour. The route of the railway and the site of the Elgin Colliery are shown in a map in Chalmers' book and Statistical Account of Dunfermline. Photographs are available online of. An 1856 map shows a brewery at the west end of the village, whinstone quarry to the north of the main road. During World War I the modern day Keavil House Hotel was used by the Admiralty as a location to base high-ranking officers, the naval base at Rosyth being of a much greater size and importance at the time. During 1917 the First Sea Lord, Prince Louis of Battenburg and his son were in residence when their names
1983 United Kingdom general election
The 1983 United Kingdom general election was held on Thursday 9 June 1983. It gave the Conservative Party under the leadership of Margaret Thatcher the most decisive election victory since that of the Labour Party in 1945. Thatcher's first four years as Prime Minister had not been an easy time. Unemployment increased during the first three years of her premiership and the economy went through a recession. However, the British victory in the Falklands War led to a recovery of her personal popularity. By the time Thatcher called the election in May 1983, the Conservatives were most people's firm favourites to win the general election; the Labour Party had been led by Michael Foot since the resignation of former Prime Minister James Callaghan in 1980. They had fared well in opinion polls and local elections during this time, but issues developed which would lead directly to their defeat. Labour adopted a platform, considered more left-wing than usual. Several moderate Labour MPs had defected from the party to form the Social Democratic Party.
The opposition vote split evenly between the Alliance and Labour. With its worst electoral performance since 1918, the Labour vote fell by over 3 million votes from 1979 and this accounted for both a national swing of 4% towards the Conservatives and their larger parliamentary majority of 144 seats though the Conservatives' total vote fell by 700,000; this was the last general election where a governing party increased its number of seats until 2015. The Alliance came within 700,000 votes of out-polling Labour. By gaining 25% of the popular vote, the Alliance won the largest such percentage for any third party since the 1923 general election. Despite this, they won only 23 seats, whereas Labour won 209; the Liberals argued that a proportional electoral system would have given them a more representative number of MPs. Changing the electoral system had been a long-running Liberal Party campaign plank and would be adopted by the Liberal Democrats; the election night was broadcast live on the BBC, was presented by David Dimbleby, Sir Robin Day and Peter Snow.
It was broadcast on ITV, presented by Alastair Burnet, Peter Sissons and Martyn Lewis. Three future Leaders of the Labour Party were first elected as Members of Parliament at this election—two of them would hold the office of Prime Minister, whilst Corbyn became Labour leader in 2015. Former Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilson, Shirley Williams, Bill Rodgers, Joan Lestor and Tony Benn left Parliament as a result of this election, although Benn would return in a by-election the following year, Lestor at the following general election. Michael Foot was elected leader of the Labour Party in 1980; the election of Foot signalled that the core of the party was swinging to the left and the move exacerbated divisions within the party. In 1981 a group of senior figures including Roy Jenkins, David Owen, Bill Rodgers and Shirley Williams left Labour to found the Social Democratic Party; the SDP agreed to a pact with the Liberals for the 1983 election and stood as "The Alliance". The campaign displayed the huge divisions between the two major parties.
Thatcher had been unpopular during her first two years in office until the swift and decisive victory in the Falklands War, coupled with an improving economy raised her standings in the polls. The Conservatives' key issues included economic growth and defence. Labour's campaign manifesto involved leaving the European Economic Community, abolishing the House of Lords, abandoning the United Kingdom's nuclear deterrent by cancelling Trident and removing cruise missiles—a programme dubbed by Labour MP Gerald Kaufman "the longest suicide note in history". Pro-Labour political journalist Michael White, writing in The Guardian, commented: "There was something magnificently brave about Michael Foot's campaign but it was like the Battle of the Somme." Following boundary changes in 1983, the BBC and ITN co-produced a calculation of how the 1979 general election would have gone if fought on the new 1983 boundaries. The following table shows the effects of the boundary changes on the House of Commons: Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher visited Buckingham Palace on the afternoon of 9 May and asked the Queen to dissolve Parliament on 13 May, announcing that the election would be held on 9 June.
The key dates were as follows: The election saw a landslide victory for the Conservatives, achieving their best results since 1935. Although there was a slight drop in their share of the vote, they made significant gains at the expense of Labour; the night was a disaster for the Labour Party. The massive increase of support for the Alliance at the expense of Labour meant that, in many seats, the collapse in the Labour vote allowed the Conservatives to gain. Despite winning over 25% of the national vote, the Alliance got fewer than 4% of seats, 186 fewer than Labour; the most significant Labour loss of the night was Tony Benn, defeated in the revived Bristol East seat. SDP President Shirley Williams a prominent leader in the Social Democratic Party, lost her Crosby seat which she had won in a by-election in 1981. Bill Rodgers, another leading figure in the Alliance failed to win his old seat that he held as a Labour MP. In Scotland, both Labour a
Cairneyhill is a small village in West Fife, Scotland. It is 3 miles west of Dunfermline, on the A994, has a population of around 2,430; the village's architecture is a mix of modern suburban housing estates. Most residents work either locally or commute to Edinburgh, Stirling or Kirkcaldy; the village is located north and west of the A985, a major trunk road that provides fast travel by car or bus to the Kincardine Bridge, the M90 Motorway and the Queensferry Crossing/Forth Road Bridge. The Firth of Forth is located 1.5 miles south of Cairneyhill, 1 mile west of Crossford. Cairneyhill hosts a number of other amenities. There are two shops, a garden centre, a petrol station, a number of housing estates, a guest house, a local pub, a primary school, a Scout hall, a small industrial estate. There is a golf course, "The Forrester Park Resort," which has two restaurants and a driving range. There is a hairdressers; the name is unusual in that the village is not on any noticeable hill, is in fact about 3 miles south of the local landmark of Cairneil Hill.
Why a settlement some miles away should be named after the hill is difficult to understand - there are much closer settlements. Old maps before 1800 make little mention of the name, the area being marked as Pitdinny or Pitdinnie, still found in a local farm on the eastern edge, as well as an area of housing in the village; the village grew in the 18th century as a settlement for local weavers and was served by the parish church, built in 1752 and is still used today. This was a hotbed of dissenters and the village was a central point for the religious disputes in Scotland in the early 19th Century. There is a small bridge over the Torry Burn at the west end of the village known as the "Conscience Bridge"; this name arises from local legend, in which a murderer was caught and confessed to his crime on the bridge and hanged himself. The line of the road has been straightened and widened over the years, with only the original north parapet remaining, but the name of the bridge is carved into a plaque which can be seen by leaning over the wall.
Cairneyhill is served by Cairneyhill Primary School, which opened in its current location in July 1980 with 110 pupils, as of 2014 has 372 pupils. It has 11 classrooms over 2 buildings; the Headteacher is Fiona Hall. On 8 December, part of the school was destroyed by a fire. All of the pupils and staff were evacuated and there were no injuries. Cairneyhill is home to two youth football clubs Cairneyhill United F. C and Cairneyhill Athletic F. C; the former is captained by Cameron Scott, who led the team to victory in the 2013 Toorie Winters Cup in memory of his late Gran Mildred. Cairneyhill won the match 2-1 on penalties after a 3-3 draw in regulation time against their opponents, Kennoway United FC with penalty goals from Cameron Scott and Daniel Niven and penalty saves from goalkeeper Moray Waite winning the match for Cairneyhill; the Torry Burn runs through the village. There are seven bridges that cross four foot bridges and three road bridges. Area telephone code: 01383 Postal code: KY12 History of Cairneyhill Church View a map of Cairneyhill
1997 United Kingdom general election
The 1997 United Kingdom general election was held on Thursday 1 May 1997, five years after the previous general election on 9 April 1992, to elect 659 members to the British House of Commons. Under the leadership of Tony Blair, the Labour Party ended its eighteen-year spell in opposition and won the general election with a landslide victory, winning 418 seats, the most seats the party has held to date, the highest proportion of seats held by any party in the post-war era. For the first time since 1931, the outgoing government lost more than half its parliamentary seats in an election; the election saw a 10.0% swing from Conservative to Labour on a national turnout of 71%, would be the last national vote where turnout exceeded 70% until the 2016 EU referendum nineteen years later. As a result Blair became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, a position he held until his resignation on 27 June 2007. Under Blair's leadership, the Labour Party had adopted a more centrist policy platform under the name'New Labour'.
This was seen as moving away from the traditionally more left-wing stance of the Labour Party. Labour made several campaign pledges such as the creation of a National Minimum Wage, devolution referendums for Scotland and Wales and promised greater economic competence than the Conservatives, who were unpopular following the events of Black Wednesday in 1992; the Labour Party campaign was a success. However, 1997 was the last general election in which Labour had a net gain of seats until the snap 2017 general election 20 years later. A record number of women were elected to 120, of whom 101 were Labour MPs; this was in part thanks to Labour's policy of using all-women shortlists. The Conservative Party was led by incumbent Prime Minister John Major and ran their campaign emphasising falling unemployment and a strong economic recovery following the early 1990s recession. However, a series of scandals, party division over the European Union, the events of Black Wednesday and a desire of the electorate for change after 18 years of Conservative rule all contributed to the Conservatives' worst defeat since 1906, with only 165 MPs elected to Westminster, as well as their lowest share of the vote since 1832.
The party was left with no seats whatsoever in Scotland or Wales, many key Conservative politicians, including Defence Secretary Michael Portillo, Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind, Trade Secretary Ian Lang, Scottish Secretary Michael Forsyth and former ministers Edwina Currie, Norman Lamont, David Mellor and Neil Hamilton lost their parliamentary seats. However, future Prime Minister Theresa May was elected to the safe Conservative seat of Maidenhead, current Speaker John Bercow at Buckingham. Following the defeat, the Conservatives began their longest continuous spell in opposition in the history of the present day Conservative Party, indeed the longest such spell for any incarnation of the Tories/Conservatives since the 1760s, lasting 13 years, including the whole of the 2000s. Throughout this period, their representation in the Commons remained below 200 MPs; the Liberal Democrats, under Paddy Ashdown, returned 46 MPs to parliament, the most for any third party since 1929 and more than double the number of seats it got in 1992, despite a drop in popular vote, in part due to tactical voting by anti-Conservative voters supporting it in lieu of Labour in areas where that party had little strength.
The Scottish National Party returned six MPs, double its total in 1992. As with all general elections since the early 1950s, the results were broadcast live on the BBC; the British economy had been in recession at the time of the 1992 election, which the Conservatives had won, although the recession had ended within a year, events such as Black Wednesday had tarnished the Conservative government's reputation for economic management. Labour had elected John Smith as its party leader in 1992, but his death from a heart attack in 1994 led the way for Tony Blair to become Labour leader. Blair brought the party closer to the political centre and abolished the party's Clause IV in their constitution, which had committed them to mass nationalisation of industry. Labour reversed its policy on unilateral nuclear disarmament and the events of Black Wednesday allowed Labour to promise greater economic management under the Chancellorship of Gordon Brown. A manifesto, entitled New Labour, New Life For Britain was released in 1996 and outlined five key pledges: Class sizes to be cut to 30 or under for 5-, 6- and 7-year-olds by using money from the assisted places scheme.
Fast track punishment for persistent young offenders, by halving the time from arrest to sentencing. Cut NHS waiting lists by treating an extra 100,000 patients as a first step by releasing £100 million saved from NHS red tape. Get 250,000 under-25-year-olds off benefit and into work by using money from a windfall levy on the privatised utilities. No rise in income tax rates, cut VAT on heating to 5%, keeping inflation and interest rates as low as possible. Disputes within the Conservative government over European Union issues, a variety of "sleaze" allegations had affected the government's popularity. Despite the strong economic recovery and substantial fall in unemployment in the four years leading up to the election, the rise in Conservative support was only marginal with all of the major opinion polls having shown Labour in a comfortable lead since late 1992. Following the 1992 general election, the Conservatives held government with 336 of the 651 H