How was England Governed in 1945?


The King

~ Had considerable rights.

~ Decided when parliament sat. 

~ Had resources at his disposal to reward good service via patronage.

~ He controlled patronage. 

~ He was expected to lead army during war

~ In charge of the justice system, the penalty for treason was death.

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The Nobility

~ King relied on the nobility to ensure that the law was enforced in the country and to provide an army when necessary from the tenants who rented land from the lord. 

~ Held quaterly sessions where minor cases were resolved and major ones brought to trial at the county court where the sherrif presided. 

~ Advisors to the king.

~ Generally well positioned to know the concerns of people and to report them to the king. Access was vital. 

~ Achieved through the kings household.

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The King's Household

~ Responsible for looking after the king: feeding and clothing him.

~ Lord Chamberlain = most senior person

- controlled access to the king

~ If some people had more access than others or if some felt excluded from the king's presence, problems came about it. 

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The Parliament

~ Met only when they king wanted them and were not called reguarly. 

~ Sessions were brief and focused on the kings business.

~ Made up of the lords and the commons.

~ Powers were very limited however the king could not make or amend laws or demand taxes without parliaments consent. 

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