Category Archives: 20TH CENTURY HISTORY

First post-war Britain’s election in 1945: Attlee’s first acts

First post-war Britain’s election in 1945: Attlee’s first acts


The results of the election came as a surprise to almost everyone when they were announced on 26 July, including Clement Attlee (1883 – 1967): Labour had been swept to power on a landslide, winning just under 50% of the vote, to the Conservatives’ 36%. Labour won 393 seats, giving them a majority of 146 seats.The new government had an unusually clear idea of what it wanted to achieve, and backbenchers were instructed to avoid private members’ bills and concentrate on voting the government’s legislation through.

On This Day: Victory Day in Europe

On This Day: Victory Day in Europe

On 8th of May 1945, Germany officially ceased military operations, ending the European conflict of World War II and prompting massive celebrations in Allied countries. By 1945, Germany was on the retreat and Allied forces were closing in on Berlin from the east and west. German capitulation was imminent. On April 30, Adolf Hitler committed suicide, leaving Karl Doenitz in power.

The Bay of Pigs: The Unsuccessful Invasion

The Bay of Pigs: The Unsuccessful Invasion

On the night of April 16th and 17th, 1961, 1,400 armed men on board a flotilla of small boats and landing-craft approached Bahía de Cochinos (Bay of Pigs) on the southern coast of Cuba. ‘Brigade 2506’ was mainly Cuban, with a handful of ‘North Americans’ (US citizens in Cuba-speak), refugees from the regime headed by Fidel Castro, which had overthrown the pro-US caudillo Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar 27 months earlier. The brigade’s goal was to oust Castro and the Fidelistas. Within three days, more than three quarters of them had been captured and more than 100 killed.

The War Horses of the Western Front

The War Horses of the Western Front

Michael Morpurgo’s popular novel War Horse (1982) has rightly been referred to as ‘the Black Beauty of the Great War’. Like Anna Sewell’s classic of 1877, the story unfolds from the perspective of the horse, a device that allows the author to explore the world of those voiceless but sentient creatures and invites us to reflect upon both the misery they have suffered at our hands and the compelling call of compassion that can transcend the boundaries of ‘human’ and ‘animal’.

On this day: Disaster of Titanic

On this day: Disaster of Titanic

When Titanic set sail for New York on 10th April 1912 she was sailed as one of the greatest feats of engineering ever to grace the waters. Four days later, Titanic struck an iceberg and the events that unfolded have made it one of the most famous disasters in maritime history.