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First in-depth study of nation’s second largest political party launched at Senedd

23 May 2024

Alumnus’ second book considers fortunes of The Conservative Party in Wales post Second World War

Wales is often considered to be one of the most anti-Conservative parts of Britain.

In The Conservative Party in Wales, 1945–1997 Sam Blaxland questions why conservatism did not succeed all parts of the country, discussing how the party communicated its policies, who its candidates were, and how the party deliberately crafted specific policies ‘for the nation’ – from introducing the first Minister for Welsh Affairs to making Welsh a compulsory subject in schools.

Historian Dr Sam Blaxland (BA 2012, MA 2014) scrutinises activists and prominent Tories, asking what they reveal about understudied aspects of Welsh history, particularly the lives of the Anglicised and socially conservative middle class in this first full-length book on the subject.

Now teaching at UCL, the Pembrokeshire-born lecturer specialises in in modern British history, focusing on education, politics, society, oral history and the history of universities and students.

The Conservative Party in Wales, 1945-1997, published by University of Wales Press, was launched at the Senedd’s Pierhead Building on 14 May at a special event sponsored by Samuel Kurtz MS.

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