P160540 london parliament building london

British History Timeline

  • Mar 5, 1215

    Magna Carta

    Magna Carta
    King John signs the Magna Carta. This document insures that he is not an absolute monarch and that parliament holds a significant role in the government. This event sets a parliamentary trend for England's later forms of government.
  • Period: Mar 5, 1532 to Mar 5, 1536

    Catholic Reformation and the Establishment of the Church of England

    Within this time period, The Church began to reform itself and Henry VII breaks away from the Church and creates the Church of England. The creation of the Church of England began to depoliticize the Church, remove religion as a devisive issue and decrease the papal authority. The Catholic Reformation created a more conservative Church and also inspired the torture and massacre of many who were deemed to be heretics.
  • Period: to

    Imperalism/Colonial Mercantilism

    Imperialism spread British Power around the world. With the slogan of "The Sun never sets on the British Empire" became popular England began to reform their political power. With the decline of the monarch, the poisition of the prime minister began to appear with the first being in 1714
  • Period: to

    The Civil War and the Restoration

    During the Civil War, Oliver Cromwell overthrows the monarchy and beheads Charles I. The Restoration restored Charles II to the thrown and expanded the role of parliament. The Civil War left England as a country bereft of a monarch for a short period. It also solidified the idea that the monarch may not rule without consent of Parliament. The subsequent Restoration set England on a course focused on parliamentary power.
  • Period: to

    The Glorious Revolution

    During the Glorious Revolution, King James II of England was overthrown and William and Mary of Orange were put on throne. The revolution allowed parliament to significantly limit the monarch's power through a Bill of Rights that asserted the power of the Parliament.
  • Act of Settlement

    Act of Settlement
    The purposed of the Act of Settlement was to governed the succession to the English throne. However, the Act of Settlement was the major turning point in the union of Scotland and England.
  • The Great Reform Act

    The Great Reform Act
    Brought about wide spread electoral changes. Is seen as a modernization of the British electoral changes as it made voting more accesible to the British commoner.
  • Second Great Reform Act

    Second Great Reform Act
    Gave suffrage to the urban working class. The act doubled the number of people able to vote allowing even more of the English people a say in their government.
  • Parliament Act of 1911

    Parliament Act of 1911
    This act reduced the power of the House of Lords by taking away their legislation blocking powers. The House of Commons could then pass legistlation despite the disapproval of the House of Lords.
  • General Strike

    General Strike
    Reductions in the wages and cpoor conditions of coal miners prompted the Trades Union Congress to call for a General Strike. The strike ended unsuccessfully after nine days.
  • World Stock Market Crash

    World Stock Market Crash
    Like the rest of the world, Britain suffered economic, social, and political harships during the depression. Also Britain was still recovering from the effects of World War I.
  • Nazi Garmany Threatens Invasion

    Nazi Garmany Threatens Invasion
    During World War the Nazi army swept through the nations of Europe and began a bombing attack on Britain. A land invasion seemed iminent which would be the first time Germany invaded Britain for hundreds of years.
  • Period: to

    Golden Era of Politics

    The Golden Era of Politics got its name because it was a time when both major political parties, the Conservative and Labour parties, advocated similar ideologies and were willing to work together on political issues.
  • National Health Service

    National Health Service
    The National Health Service was founded as a publically funded healthcare system. The government used this program as a way to make every citizen eligible for health benefits. This policy also expanded the welfare state.
  • Margaret Thatcher

    Margaret Thatcher
    Margaret Thatcher becomes the first woman UK Prime Minister. Her victory marks the beginning of a long conservative reign and a generation focused on a strong market economy rather than a welfare state.
  • Tony Blair

    Tony Blair
    The Labour Party finally defeats the Conservatives. Tony Blair replaces John Major as prime minister, and the Labour Party becomes increasingly moderate. Blair eliminates Clause 4 and avoids socialism. However, he holds the majority of Thatcher's policies.
  • Blair Resigns

    Blair Resigns
    Gordon Brown replaces Tony Blair as Prime Minister in Britain. Blair's popularity had waned through the manipulation of his party and his failure to implement important policies. Brown hoped to continue Labour's power in the government.
  • David Cameron

    David Cameron
    The Conservative Party won 307 seats in Parliament after forming a coalition with the Liberal Democrats. As a result, the Labour Party falls from power, and David Cameron becomes the youngest prime minister since the Earl of Liverpool.