The evils of drink were a constant preoccupation in late Victorian England. The United Kingdom Alliance, founded in 1853, fought a long and vigorous but ultimately unsuccessful campaign for prohibition. In doing so it eventually developed into one of the most powerful reformist pressure groups operating in Victorian political life.
First published in 1980, this book covers in extensive detail the legislative activity of the Alliance and analyses the administration and campaign strategies involved, from its formation to the disastrous electoral defeat of the liberal party in 1895. Stressing that the phenomenon of Prohibition cannot be adequately explained purely in political terms, this study shows that the preliminary success and eventual failure of the Alliance was closely related to its nonconformist ethics and attitudes.
This book will be of interest to those studying Victorian history, politics and religion.
Introduction; 1. Early Years 2. New Directions, 1872-1874 3. Liberals and the Alliance 4. The Elusive Victory 1880-1887 5. Conservatives and Compensation, 1888-1890 6. The First Veto Bill 7. The Second Veto Bill and After 8. The Alliance Machine 9. Campaigning 10. Conclusions; Index