Conservative interwar ascendancy

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Stanley Baldwin

Leader fr 15 years, Prime Minister on 3 separate occasions

Political ideas and personality were popular with the public

Endorsed Britain's desire for tranquility and a return to pre-war standards wherever possible

Pragmatic, honest countryman - middle classes felt safe and secure

Excellent public speaker, especially when using new forms of media like the cinema newsreel

Courageous and faced things head on - General Strike, Edward VIII abdication

Popular amongst peers in all parties

Never faced a major challenge to his leadership

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Structure of the party

Secure flow of funding - better than Liberals and Labour

Grants meant they maintained a presence in poorer constituencies, helped with candidates expenses

Majority of constituences able to afford a full time Area Agent

Grassroots organisations very successful in stirring up party support, eg. Primrose League, Women's Institute, Mothers' Union. 1m women supported party in this way

Influence of the media: Daily Mail, The Telegrapth, The Times and the Daily Mirror all supported the Conservatives

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Opposition

Liberals never recovered from 1916 split between Lloyd George and Asquith

Split again in the 1930s over free trade

Labour not a threat - only survived in 1924 because of Liberals

Ramsay MacDonald split the party seemingly beyond repair in 1931

British Union of Fascists failed to make an impact due to the feeling of safety and security in the middle class

Irish not a threat anymore. Anglo-Irish Treaty removed Home Rule party from parliament. Ulster Unionists remained, and they naturally allied themselves with the Conservatives

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Outside factors

World War 1 - created a desire for peace and stability. Lloyd George was seen as too radical to achieve this, Labour was too inexperienced

Representation of the People Act (1918 and 1928) trebled the electorate. In Conservatives' favour as women, middle class and indeed even the working class were shown to be more likely to vote for the Conservatives

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