As the Labour Party return to Liverpool – the scene of their pitched battles of the 1980s – Militant have been praised for their work fighting the Tories. In 1985 however, it was Neil Kinnock’s speech that put Labour back on the long road to government.
The Road to Bournemouth
The battle between the Labour Party and the Militant faction was arguably their biggest – and most destructive – of the 1980s.
The path to Neil Kinnock’s Bournemouth speech began twenty years earlier, when – in 1964 – the Militant Tendency launched their newspaper The Militant. Developing as a group from the Revolutionary Socialist League, it pursued an “entryist” policy to gain key positions within the Labour Party.
As Labour were turfed out of office in 1979, moderate MPs came under increasing pressure to adopt a more radical Marxist agenda.The nature of the divide was illustrated at Labour’s 1980 conference, where delegates met to decide…
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