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How effectively did the conservatives deal with the difficulties that faced them in office from 1899-1905?

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How effectively did the conservatives deal with the difficulties that faced them in office from 1899-1905? To answer this question we must first identify the difficulties that the conservatives faced. At the same time we also must remind ourselves of the popular electoral support they enjoyed, which meant they had two consecutive terms of office under Salisbury between 1899-1905. The 19th Century saw the rise of the new unionism. The 1834 parliamentary reformat radically changed British political life by giving working class men the vote, as Britain was the first industrial nation this had given rise to a vast urban working class who potentially were in a position to determine the future of either liberal or conservative governments. One of the major difficulties facing the conservatives administration was how to address the demand of the working class for social reform in the fields of housing, education, health, and industrial relations e.g The Taff Vale case in 1901. ...read more.


Otherwise the status quo was defended with success - Salisbury. When considering how effective the conservatives dealt with the difficulties that faced them in office we could argue that Salisbury proberley achieved what he set out to do and that is limited reform, to defend the interest of the landed classes (the conservative support power base) and to steer Britain safely through a stormy period. In which the empire was growing rapidly and various agreements had to be reached in order to alleviate colonial tensions. The difficulties faced by Balfour was the Taff Vale case in 1901 - the House of lords acting as their final court of appeal made their judgement in the Taff Vale case. Taff Vale rail company in south Wales took the workers union which was the almaganated society of railway servants to court the union had to pay �23,000 in the damages the wider implications were clear no union could strike without fear of damages. ...read more.


The act dealt with the clear inadequacies of secondary school provision. The education act of 1870 only made education provision for elementary schools but many school boards were using the money to provide advanced courses for more senior pupils. In 1901 the lord on school boards was successfully sued for providing their secondary education thus action was required by the state to take responsibility for both elementary and secondary education. (see page 287 for education act) Chinese Slavery proved to be another minefield Balfour could have avoided with a little for thought the government might have recognised the decision to send thousands of Chinese slaves to Africa would provoke an outcry, which would undermine their electoral popularity. Another disaster Balfour could have avoided was Chamberlains tariff reforms see page 289. In introducing these Tariffs Chamberlain intended to challenge the orthodoxy of free trade, which was a dominant value for liberals and the conservatives. ...read more.

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