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Abstract of Important Events - The Westminster election, 28 February 1974



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Text and Research: Martin Melaugh
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Introduction

This is one of a number of files which provide a very brief abstract of important events during the Northern Ireland conflict. Some of the events are dealt with in greater detail elsewhere (check, for example, Key Events and the corresponding entry in the chronology.


The Westminster election, 28 February 1974

Although the Northern Ireland Executive members encountered problems from the time they were sworn in, the first public test of opinion came with the Westminster election on 28 February 1974 which was viewed as a referendum on power-sharing and the Sunningdale Agreement. Those opposed to Sunningdale fought the election under the auspicious of the United Ulster Unionist Council (UUUC) and won 51 per cent of the votes cast, and took 11 of the 12 Westminster seats. While the results of the election did not have a direct affect on the Northern Ireland Executive it did show the increasing opposition to power-sharing and the Council of Ireland. The result also provided those opposed to Sunningdale with a mandate to continue to try to end the Northern Ireland Executive.


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