The Ultimate Margaret Thatcher Quiz



9 Questions

What was Margaret Thatcher's nickname and why was she given it?

What was the main focus of Thatcherism?

What was the result of Thatcher's decision to abolish free milk for schoolchildren aged seven to eleven?

What was Thatcher's economic policy influenced by?

What was the biggest confrontation between the unions and the Thatcher government?

What was the outcome of the Falklands War?

What was Thatcher's stance on Scottish devolution?

What was Thatcher's policy on trade unions?

What was Thatcher's stance on German reunification?


Margaret Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, was the first female British prime minister and the longest-serving British prime minister of the 20th century, serving from 1979 to 1990. As prime minister, she implemented economic policies that became known as Thatcherism, which emphasised deregulation, privatisation of state-owned companies, and reducing the power and influence of trade unions. Thatcher was a polarising figure in British politics, but is viewed favourably in historical rankings and public opinion of British prime ministers. Thatcher studied chemistry at Somerville College, Oxford, before becoming a barrister and was elected Member of Parliament for Finchley in 1959. She rose through the ranks of the Conservative Party, becoming Leader of the Opposition in 1975. Thatcher was re-elected for a third term with another landslide in 1987 but resigned as prime minister and party leader in 1990. Thatcher survived an assassination attempt by the Provisional IRA in the 1984 Brighton hotel bombing and achieved a political victory against the National Union of Mineworkers in the 1984–85 miners' strike. Thatcher's political philosophy and economic policies emphasised deregulation (particularly of the financial sector), the privatisation of state-owned companies, and reducing the power and influence of trade unions. She was nicknamed the "Iron Lady" by a Soviet journalist for her uncompromising politics and leadership style. Thatcher is viewed as a realignment towards neoliberal policies in Britain, with the complicated legacy attributed to Thatcherism debated into the 21st century.Margaret Thatcher's rise to power and policies

  • Thatcher supported market forces affecting government funding of research, despite opposition from scientists.

  • Thatcher turned down only 9% of proposals for schools to become comprehensives during her tenure as education secretary, resulting in a rise in pupils attending comprehensive schools from 32% to 62%.

  • Thatcher's decision to abolish free milk for schoolchildren aged seven to eleven provoked a storm of protest from Labour and the press, earning her the nickname "Margaret Thatcher, Milk Snatcher".

  • Thatcher became Conservative Party leader and Leader of the Opposition in 1975, defeating Heath and Whitelaw.

  • Thatcher's voice coach helped her improve her presentation skills, and she attended lunches regularly at the Institute of Economic Affairs, where she was influenced by the ideas of Ralph Harris and Arthur Seldon.

  • Thatcher opposed Scottish devolution and supported amending the legislation to allow the English to vote in the 1979 referendum on Scottish devolution.

  • The Conservatives won a 44-seat majority in the House of Commons in the 1979 general election, and Thatcher became the first female British prime minister.

  • Thatcher's "Iron Lady" nickname followed her throughout her political career after she embraced the epithet.

  • Thatcher's economic policy was influenced by monetarist thinking and economists such as Milton Friedman and Alan Walters, resulting in lower direct taxes on income and increased indirect taxes, increased interest rates, and reduced expenditure on social services such as education and housing.

  • Thatcher was committed to reducing the power of the unions, whose leadership she accused of undermining parliamentary democracy and economic performance through strike action, and the miners' strike of 1984-85 was the biggest confrontation between the unions and the Thatcher government.

  • Thatcher believed that the trade unions were harmful to both ordinary trade unionists and the public, and managed to destroy the power of the trade unions for almost a generation.

  • Thatcher's policies on minorities and immigration were controversial, with her comments on the British character and fear of being swamped by minorities causing criticism. Her relationship with Queen Elizabeth II also came under scrutiny, with reports of a rift between the two.Margaret Thatcher's Policies and Actions: A Detailed Summary

  • Thatcher's comparison of the miners' strike to the Falklands War was widely criticised, and her opponents accused her of showing contempt for the working class.

  • The year-long miners' strike ended in 1985 when the NUM leadership conceded without a deal. The strike cost the economy at least £1.5 billion, and tens of thousands of jobs were lost as a result of the closure of 150 coal mines.

  • Thatcher's privatisation policy, which accelerated after the 1983 election, was associated with marked improvements in performance, particularly in terms of labour productivity. However, results have been mixed, and some privatised companies have not had successful share price trajectories in the longer term.

  • Thatcher supported an active climate protection policy and helped to put climate change, acid rain, and general pollution in the British mainstream in the late 1980s.

  • Thatcher gave strong support to US President Ronald Reagan's Cold War policies based on their shared distrust of communism, and she bought the Trident nuclear missile submarine system from the US to replace Polaris, tripling the UK's nuclear forces at an eventual cost of more than £12 billion.

  • Thatcher's government supplied military forces to the international coalition in the build-up to the Gulf War, but she had resigned by the time hostilities began on 17 January 1991.

  • The Falklands War was a defining moment of Thatcher's premiership. Thatcher set up and chaired a small War Cabinet to oversee the conduct of the war, which authorised and dispatched a naval task force to retake the islands. Argentina surrendered on 14 June, and Operation Corporate was hailed a success.

  • Thatcher visited China in September 1982 to discuss with Deng Xiaoping the sovereignty of Hong Kong after 1997. After two years of negotiations, Thatcher conceded to the PRC government and signed the Sino-British Joint Declaration in Beijing in 1984, agreeing to hand over Hong Kong's sovereignty in 1997.

  • Thatcher's first foreign-policy crisis came with the 1979 Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. She condemned the invasion and helped convince some British athletes to boycott the 1980 Moscow Olympics. She gave weak support to US President Jimmy Carter who tried to punish the USSR with economic sanctions.

  • Thatcher refused to countenance a return to political status for hunger-striking PIRA and INLA prisoners in Northern Ireland, saying that "crime is crime is crime; it is not political". The British government privately contacted republican leaders in a bid to bring the hunger strikes to an end. After the deaths of ten prisoners, the strike ended.

  • Thatcher supported the Khmer Rouge keeping their UN seat after they were ousted from power in Cambodia by the Cambodian–Vietnamese War, and from 1983 the Special Air Service trained "the armed forces of the Cambodian non-communist resistance" that remained loyal to Prince Norodom Sihanouk and his former prime minister Son Sann in the fight against the Vietnamese-backed puppet regime.

  • Thatcher's tenure saw a sharp decline in trade union density, with the percentage of workers belonging to a trade union falling from 57.3% in 1979 to 49.5% in 1985. In 1979 up until Thatcher's final year in office, trade union membership also fell, from 13.5 million in 1979 to fewer than 10 million.Margaret Thatcher: A Summary of Her Life and Legacy

  • Thatcher supported negotiations to end apartheid in South Africa but opposed sanctions imposed by the Commonwealth and the European Economic Community (EEC)

  • She attempted to preserve trade with South Africa while persuading its government to abandon apartheid, casting herself as President Botha's candid friend

  • Thatcher's opposition to further European integration became more pronounced during her premiership, and particularly after her third government in 1987

  • Thatcher was initially opposed to German reunification, fearing that a united Germany would align itself more closely with the Soviet Union and move away from NATO

  • During her premiership, Thatcher had the second-lowest average approval rating of any post-war prime minister

  • Thatcher was challenged for the leadership of the Conservative Party by Sir Anthony Meyer in 1989, but she won with a large majority

  • Discontent within her party grew, and in 1990, Thatcher was four votes short of the required 15% majority to win the second ballot for leadership

  • John Major replaced Thatcher as head of government and party leader

  • After leaving the premiership, Thatcher became the first former British prime minister to set up a foundation, wrote two volumes of memoirs, and became a geopolitical consultant for Philip Morris

  • Thatcher was an advocate of Croatian and Slovenian independence and called for NATO to stop the Serbian assault on Goražde and Sarajevo during the Bosnian War

  • Thatcher's health declined in later years, and she suffered from dementia

  • Thatcher died on 8 April 2013, at the age of 87, after suffering a stroke, and her death was met with mixed reactions.


How much do you know about Margaret Thatcher? Test your knowledge with our quiz! From her rise to power, economic policies, foreign policy, and controversial actions, this quiz covers everything about the "Iron Lady". Brush up on your knowledge of this historical figure and her legacy by answering questions about her life, policies, and impact on British politics and society. Perfect for history buffs and political enthusiasts alike, this quiz will challenge you and provide insight into one of the most polarising figures in modern British history

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