Yes, indeed. Today marks the thirtieth anniversary of the UK general election of 1979.
As we all know, the Conservatives under Margaret Thatcher won the election with 43,9 per cent of the vote giving the party 53,4 per cent of the seats in the House of Commons and managed to stay in office until 1997.
What spooks me is that I actually remember the UK having a Labour government, industrial unrest and a really cheap pound. Back in 1976-77, London was in fact a very popular holiday destination for Danes because of the shopping opportunities (remember that Denmark devalued the krone on endless occasions until 1981). I also remember following Thatcher’s fall on BBC in late 1990 – I had just moved to a flat with cable-TV and watching foreign news broadcasts was still very exotic. And then there was the crazy night in 1997 when New Labour more or less wiped out the Tories in general and the Tory front bench in particular.
One final observation: Despite – or perhaps because of – the political and social changes in the UK since the 1970s, Thatcher introduced a succession of prime ministers with very long terms in office. Thatcher would serve for 10 1/2 years, John Major for 6 1/2 and Tony Blair for a little over 10 years. Chances are that Gordon Brown will only make it to three years – but in politics you never know.