This book has done a number of things in the preceding chapters. It has introduced the three main political parties in the UK, and discussed their ideologies, policies, leadership and performance in office. It has taken a thematic approach to a number of issues such as the rise of small parties, the importance of the UK’s ‘multi-level’ party systems, the relationship between parties and the media, and how parties organize, finance themselves and campaign for election. More generally, it has also introduced broader debates about the nature of the UK party system and how parties may, or may not, fulfil their functions in Britain today. This concluding chapter returns to these more general concerns in order to reflect on some of the challenges facing the UK party system and political parties in the aftermath of the 2010 general election and the subsequent novelty of coalition government at Westminster. Discussion proceeds in four parts. The first section assesses the party system and asks whether the very notion of a British party system itself is coming under threat from political developments in the UK. The second part questions whether or not the UK’s political parties are in decline or whether they have adapted to changing circumstances and continue to fulfil certain functions in British democracy. The third section identifies a range of direct challenges to parties both collectively and individually.
Swipe to navigate through the chapters of this book
Please log in to get access to this content
- Conclusion: Political Parties in the UK
- Macmillan Education UK
- Sequence number
- Chapter number