Film ID: YFA 854 Video of YFA_854 Events in Leeds - General Election 1945 EVENTS IN LEEDS - GENERAL ELECTION 1945 1945 Visitor TabsDescription This film is part of the Leeds City Libraries collection and shows the candidates for the General Election campaigning and trying to win over voters. A large crowd of men and women have gathered in the town square opposite the `Colonial Municipal Life Office'. Several different political candidates stand up and make speeches while various spectators hold up signs which read `Labour Leeds' and `West Leeds STAMFORD'. Another group of men start to march up and down with sign reading `Central Leeds PORTER, North East Leeds BACON, South East Leeds MILNER, and South Leeds GAITSKELL'. There is only one woman candidate who gets up to make a speech. In another part of the square some cars drive along with signs for `Labour Leeds' and `5 Labour MP', `Well Done Leeds', `North Leeds HODGSON'. They stand up in the open topped cars as they drive along. The cars drive through the streets in procession followed by a huge crowd of men and women supporters. Speakers are talking on a podium, and Labour placards are clearly visible in the background. Different people orate from the podium. There are then shots of a Labour convoy of cars. People follow on foot. Context Parliamentary politics being what it is, it is not often that there is a mass rally and parade after a general election victory. But the 1945 triumph of Labour is the exception, generating genuine hope among its large body of activists, as seen here as the Party faithful of Leeds turnout en masse to listen to the victorious candidates and join a celebratory parade through the streets, among them the future party leader Hugh Gaitskell. The 1945 General Election is noted for the landslide win for Labour, with a record 12 point swing. It was based upon a radical manifesto, Let us Face the Future Together, which promised comprehensive social security, a national health service and the nationalisation of major industries. Labour won 4 out of 5 seats in Leeds, only losing out in the traditional Conservative Leeds North by just 128 votes. Hugh Gaitskell was elected for the first time, going on to become the future Party leader in 1955 until his premature death in 1963. With his introduction of prescription charges on spectacles and false teeth as Chancellor, in the 1951 budget, he became the leader of the right in the Party in opposition to Nye Bevan.