History of Scotland - Early 20th Century - Interwar Politics

Interwar Politics

After World War I the Liberal Party began to disintegrate and Labour emerged as the party of progressive politics in Scotland, gaining a solid following among working classes of the urban lowlands. As a result the Unionists were able to gain most of the votes of the middle classes, who now feared Bolshevik revolution, setting the social and geographical electoral pattern in Scotland that would last until the late 20th century. The fear of the left had been fuelled by the emergence of a radical movement led by militant trades unionists. John MacLean emerged as a key political figure in what became known as Red Clydeside, and in January 1919, the British Government, fearful of a revolutionary uprising, deployed tanks and soldiers in central Glasgow. Formerly a Liberal stronghold, the industrial districts switched to Labour by 1922, with a base in the Irish Catholic working class districts. Women were especially active in building neighbourhood solidarity on housing and rent issues. However, the "Reds" operated within the Labour Party and had little influence in Parliament; in the face of heavy unemployment the workers' mood changed to passive despair by the late 1920s. Scottish educated Andrew Bonar Law led a Conservative government from 1922 to 1923 and another Scot, Ramsey MacDonald, would be the Labour Party's first Prime Minister in 1924 and again from 1929-35.

With all the main parties committed to the Union, new nationalist and independent political groupings began to emerge, including the National Party of Scotland in 1928 and Scottish Party in 1930. They joined to form the Scottish National Party (SNP) in 1934, with the goal of creating an independent Scotland, but it enjoyed little electoral success in the Westminster system.

Read more about this topic:  History Of Scotland, Early 20th Century

Other articles related to "interwar politics":

Scottish History - Early 20th Century - Interwar Politics - Second World War 1939-45
... In World War II, Prime Minister Winston Churchill appointed Labour politician Tom Johnston as Secretary of State for Scotland in February 1941 he controlled Scottish affairs until the war ended ... He launched numerous initiatives to promote Scotland, attracting businesses and new jobs through his new Scottish Council of Industry ...

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