The Main Achievements of Disraeli's Ministry 1874-1880 in the Field of Social Reform

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The Main Achievements of Disraeli's Ministry 1874-1880 in the Field of Social Reform When Disraeli was attempting to get back into government in 1873 and 1874, he made a number of speeches to try to win voters. It is said that the speeches he made, especially the ones he made in Manchester and at Crystal Palace, were very influential, and vital for the Conservatives' recovery, and eventual victory in 1874. The main target which the Conservative government would be aiming for in the field of social reform, he said, would be to "elevate the condition of the people". If this was his real aim, we must look at the reforms his ministry introduced, and question whether they actually did elevate the …show more content…

Overall, this was an Act which was exceedingly beneficial for the working man, and if applied in his area, would improve his lifestyle a great deal. A different problem for the working class at the time, and therefore a problem for Disraeli when trying to keep their votes, was the long working hours the working people of England were having to endure. Although it did not satisfy the demands of the Nine Hours Movement, a pressure group largely supported in Yorkshire and Lancashire, the Factory Act of 1874 did reduce the number of maximum working hours in a day to ten hours allowing a half day on Saturday. The Factories and Workshops Act of 1878 further reinforced previous factory legislation and also applied to workshops, where only a dozen or so people worked. For the Conservatives, this was a good achievement, and it pleased the working class who literally sung the praise of Cross, the man who had brought in the Acts. This strongly contributed to keeping the support of the working class on the Conservatives side, which was of vital importance in a time when the working men made up a large proportion of the electorate. The restrictions Gladstone's government had placed on Trade Unions had frustrated the working people greatly. Even the Liberals had promised to change, the Criminal Law Amendment Act of 1871 if they got back into power.

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