Edward Heath became prime minister in June 1970 with a clear mandate. The Conservative Party had secured 13.1 million votes and a 46.4 percent vote share in the general election and had entered power with a healthy majority of 31 seats. That Heath intended to change Britain was evident from his speech to the Conservative Party Annual Conference of October 1970:
Heath was denied the opportunity to govern into the 1980s as his administration was removed from office in the general election of February 1974, when their vote fell by 1.3 million votes (to 11.8 million) and by 8.5 per cent (to 37.9 per cent).
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