How was Peel able to win the 1841 general election?

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Peel takes over from Wellington.

Sr Robert Peel took over as Tory leader from the Duke of Wellington following the Tory Party's heavy defeat in the 1832 general election.

Within 9 years, Peel had transformed the party and won the 1841 general election.

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The Tory Party becomes the Conservative Party.

Peel accepted the changes made by the Great Reform Act of 1832 as the final change to the electoral system.

He decided to win over support from the industrial middle class as well as to get support from more traditional Tory voters such as landowners and Anglicans.

These new ideas were reflected in the change in party name to 'Conservative' in 1834.

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Tamworth Manifesto

In this statement to the electors for the January 1835 general election, Peel stated that the Conservative Party would in future support reform of 'proven abyses'.

Peel's party would also defend the Anglican Church, maintain law and order, and support the House of Lords and the monarchy.

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The 100 Days in 1834-35

Peel's first minority government gave him the opportunity to put his new ideas into practice.

His decision to set up a Commission into the Anglican Church is an example of this. Peel helped reorganise the party nationally.

Using the terms of the Reform Act of 1932, he set up the registration societies to register new voters.

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Peel's refusal to take office in 1839.

When the Whigs resigned over the Jamaica revolt in 1839, Peel used the Bedchamber crisis as his reason to refuse to take office.

He realised the Whig Party was in a process of decline and was rewarded with victory in the 1841 election.

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The Whig Party loses popularity.

The rise of working class unrest with Chartism from 1838 and the government's links with O'Connell's Irish Catholic Party were reasons for a loss of popularity with the electorate.

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