Complete classes from the CAB & PREM series in the Public Record Office
Series Three: CAB 128 & CAB 129 - Cabinet Conclusions & Cabinet Memoranda, 1945 and following
Part 4: The Macmillan/Home Governments, January 1957 - October 1964
(CAB 128/31-38 & CAB 129/85-118)
Brief Chronology, 1951-1964
Eisenhower appointed supreme commander of NATO
The Iron and Steel industries are nationalised by the Labour government
Conference held in London on the creation of a Central African Federation
The European Coal and Steel Community is founded by the Treaty of Paris.
Festival of Britain opens in London.
Dr Mussadegh nationalises the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company
Gaitskell’s first budget raises taxes to pay for re-armament; introduction of NHS charges leads to resignation of
Wilson, Bevan and Freeman
The Conservative Party, led by Winston Churchill, wins the general election with a narrow majority (17 seats)
King George VI dies
Eisenhower resigns as Supreme Allied Commander, and is nominated by the Republican party as its presidential
European Defence Community treaty agreed
European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) is ratified by the six signatories of the Treaty of Paris
Britain successfully detonates an atomic device and becomes the world’s third nuclear power
Mau Mau insurrection leads to state of emergency in Kenya
Eisenhower wins US Presidential elections
President Eisenhower visits Korea
By the end of the year Britain’s Balance of Payments stands at a surplus of £300m
Stalin dies and is replaced by Malenkov as Soviet leader
Butler reduces income tax by 6d in the budget
US planes bomb North Korea
Korean armistice signed at Panmunjom
Soviet Union successfully tests a Hydrogen Bomb
The Shah regains power in Iran following the fall of Mussadegh
Establishment of the Central African Federation
Renè Coty wins the French Presidential elections
By the end of the year 327,000 new houses had been built under Macmillan’s housing programme.
The US explode a Hydrogen Bomb on Bikini Atoll
Senator MacCarthy’s anti-communist hearings begin
French surrender at Dien Bien Phu
Geneva Conference on Vietnam opens
South Vietnam gains limited independence
Soviet Union rejects the re-unification of Germany at a foreign ministers’ conference in Berlin
The French government of Laniel falls and is replaced by that of Mendes-France
Eden announces that 38,000 British troops will be withdrawn from the Suez Canal Zone over the next two years
The French National Assembly’s failure to ratify the EDC treaty leads to its collapse
Ministry of Materials, and the Raw Cotton Commission abolished
Nine Power Agreement reached at London, ends occupation of West Germany and lays basis for Western European defence as later ratified by the Paris Agreements
The South East Asian Treaty Organisation (SEATO) formed.
Algerian uprising against French rule
Western European Union treaty signed
Colonel Nasser gains power in Egypt
Laos gains independence
US Senate condemns Senator MacCarthy for his communist ‘witch hunts’
354,000 new houses built by the end of the year
Soviet Union recognises the Federal Republic of Germany
Baghdad Pact, which would later develop into the Central Treaty Organisation (CENTO) signed by Turkey, Iran and
Mendes-France's administration falls and is replaced by Edgar Faure
Malenkov is succeeded by Bulganin as Soviet Premier
Defence White Paper announces British intention to develop a Hydrogen Bomb
Butler introduces tax cuts in his Budget
Churchill resigns and is replaced as Prime Minister and leader of the Conervative Party by Anthony Eden
Civil war breaks out in South Vietnam between Bao Dai and Ngo Dinh Diem
West Germany joins NATO
The Warsaw Pact is signed
Federation of Malaya created as an independent nation
General election sees the Conservatives increase their parliamentary majority to 58 seats
Jean Monnet resigns as President of the High Authority of the ECSC, he is replaced by René Mayer
The Messina Conference on further European integration is held in Italy
Increasing unrest and violence in Cyprus
Eden states at a meeting of the IMF that he will not devalue the Pound
Treaty of Vienna returns full sovereignty to Austria.
The Republic of Vietnam established by President Diem
Eden’s first Cabinet reshuffle
Gaitskell replaces Attlee as leader of the Labour Party
Archbishop Makarios is deported to the Seychelles
Bulganin and Khrushchev visit Eden in London
Record British exports of £238m recorded
Nasser nationalises the Suez Canal
Israeli forces launch attack against Egyptian positions as prelude to British and French intervention in the Suez Canal
British and French paratroops seize Port Said, but American and UN pressure results in a cease-fire before the entire
Suez Canal Zone can be secured
Occupation of Hungary by Soviet forces to crush demonstrations in favour of liberalisation
Eisenhower wins US Presidential elections
The last French and British troops leave Egypt
Harold Macmillan succeeds Eden as leader of the Conservative Party
European Free Trade Association proposed by UK.
The Treaty of Rome signed
Macmillan meets with Eisenhower at the Bermuda Conference
Archbishop Makarios is released
Defence White Paper announces major reduction in defence spending
British H-bomb tested on Chritmas Island
Eisenhower offers Macmillan Thor nuclear missles
Commonwealth Conference held in London
Intervention in Oman
Start of Test-Ban treaty negotiations
Establishment of the Council on Prices, Productivity and Incomes (COPPI)
Bank rates raised to 7% in an effort to tackle the sterling crisis.
Maudling Committee on free trade areas formed.
Serious radiation leak at Windscale nuclear power plant.
Rent Act comes into operation
Macmillan travels to Washington for talks with Eisenhower; ‘Declaration of Common Purpose’
USSR launches Sputnik satellite into orbit
Thorneycroft resigns as Chancellor of the Exchequer
EEC and EURATOM come into existence.
Macmillan undertakes a Tour of Commonwealth Countries
The Federation of the West Indies created
The Campaign for nuclear Disarmament (CND) is formed.
Industrial unrest in Britain
United Arab Republic formed by Syria and Egypt; and is soon joinecd by Yemen
Arab Federation created by Iraq and Jordan
Bank rate reduced.
De Gaulle becomes Premier of France following political turmoil caused by Algerian unrest.
Overthrow of monarchy in Iraq
Start of Cyprus negotiations
Chinese communist forces shell the nationalist held islands of Quemoy an Matsu, prompting the US to state its
readiness to use nuclear weapons to defend the islands
Roy Welensky’s Federation Party wins elections in the Central African Federation
France rejects EFTA proposals.
De Gaulle becomes first president of the Fifth French Republic.
Macmillan visits USSR
Civil unrest and riots lead to a state of emergency in the Central African Federation
Plans for Cypriot independence agreed upon.
Civil unrest in Central African Federation
A cease-fire is called betwee EOKA and British forces in Cyprus
£370m given away in tax relief in the Budget.
Gaitskell attempts to remove Clause Four of the Labour Party’s constitution committing it to public ownership.
Conservatives win the general election with an increased majority of 100 seats.
Stockholm Convention establishes the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).
Macmillan begins a tour of Africa in Northern Rhodesia
Macmillan addresses the South African Parliament.
Monckton Commission travels to the Central African Federation
Paris Summit, first meeting of the six EEC countries since 1957.
France successfully tests a nuclear device in the Sahara Desert and joins the ‘nuclear club’.
67 demonstrators killed at Sharpeville, South Africa.
Macmillan visits Washington; the United States agree to supply the UK with Skybolt nuclear missiles
Bank rate raised to 5%
Public announcement of the abandonment of the Blue Streak project and intention to acquire Skybolt nuclear missiles
Paris Summit Conference on disarmament
Bank rate raised to 6%
Cyprus gains independence
Nigeria granted independence
The Labour Party is split by issue of unilateral nuclear disarmament at its conference
Monckton Commission report published
John F Kennedy wins US Presidential elections
Organisation for European Economic Co-operation (OEEC) renamed into Organisation for Economic Co-operation
and Development (OECD)
Sierra Leone granted independence (becomes a republic in 1971)
South Africa withdraws from the Commonwealth
Britain sends troops and aircraft to Kuwait to counter a possible threat from Iraq
Greece joins EEC as associate member
Ireland applies for EEC membership
Report of the Prices, Productivity and Incomes Commission
Denmark and UK apply for EEC membership
Berlin Wall built
Negotiations between EEC and UK, Ireland and Greece begin
Tanganyika gains independence and becomes a republic one year later
Macmilan and Kennedy discuss nuclear policy at the Bermuda Meeting
Common Agricultural Policy introduced
Establishment of National Economic Development Council
Geneva diarmament talks
Norway applies for EEC membership
Jamaica and Trinidad granted independence
Commonwealth Immigration Act
‘Night of the Long Knives’; Macmillan sacks seven Cabinet, and four non-Cabinet, Ministers
Uganda granted independence
Cuban missile crisis
US announces cancellation of the Skybolt missile programme.
Macmillan and de Gaulle discuss Europe at Rambouillet
Nassau Agreement reached between Kennedy and Macmillan for supply of Polaris missiles to Britain
President de Gaulle vetoes Britain's application to join the EEC
France and FRG sign friendship pact
Gaitskell dies and is replaced by Harold Wilson as leader of the Labour Party
Profumo makes a statement in Parliament dennying any “impropriety” in his relationship with Christine Keeler
Lord Radcliffe’s report into the Vassall scandal published
Profumo wins libel cases from the Paris Match and Tempo Illustrato
Profumo admits lying to Parliament and resigns; the ensuing scandal rocks the government
President Kennedy visits Berlin and delivers “Eich bin Ein Berliner” speech
Test Ban Treaty signed in Moscow
Yaoundé Convention; EEC offers reciprocal favourable trade terms to 18 African nations
Denning Report into security aspects of the Profumo affair is published
Turkey becomes associate member of the EEC
Macmillan resigns and Sir Alec Douglas-Home becomes leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister
Nigeria becomes a republic
John F Kennedy assassinated in Dallas, Texas; Lyndon Johnson sworn in as President of the US
Central African Federation dissolved
Kenya gains independence and becomes a republic one year later
Ian Smith replaces Winston Field as Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia
Malawi gains independence
Malta gains independence
Zambia becomes an independent republic
Khrushkhev replaced by Brezhnev as Soviet Premier
The Labour Party win a narrow majority in the general election and Harold Wilson becomes the new Prime Minister