Devolving Power

  • Leslie Hannah


The Conservatives generally enjoyed the hot air of political rhetoric against nationalisation, and when they returned to power in 1951, some Ministers were willing to contemplate extensive de-nationalisation to reverse Labour’s programme. In the case of electricity, however, a return to pre-nationalisation organisation was widely regarded as impractical, and many in the Cabinet felt that a full-blooded commitment to de-nationalisation in areas like this would do nothing to improve efficiency and provide no real political gains either. Even so, it was not until two years after he came to power that Churchill quelled speculation by announcing publicly that the supply industry would remain under public control.1 There remained considerable discontent among Conservative back-bench diehards, who felt the need to redeem some of their rhetorical opposition pledges. In opposition they had attacked the Central Authority and Labour Ministers for the industry’s alleged inefficiency and bureaucratic over-centralisation.


Central Authority Supply Industry Political Rhetoric Labour Minister Area Board 
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Notes and References

  1. 8.
    Central Electricity Authority, Comments on the Recommendations and Conclusions of the Committee of Inquiry into the Electricity Supply Industry, 1956. The comments were printed but, at Ministerial request, not published. Copies were, however, deposited in the House of Commons library.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Electricity Council 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leslie Hannah
    • 1
  1. 1.London School of EconomicsUK

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