From Winston Churchill to Liz Truss – 14 Prime Ministers sworn in during Queen Elizabeth’s reign

Recently, Queen Elizabeth celebrated 70 years of sitting on the British throne and her 96th birthday. Under him, newly appointed Prime Minister Liz Truss becomes the 15th Prime Minister. He is due to meet the Queen in Scotland today (Tuesday) after Truss was announced as Prime Minister yesterday. Queen Elizabeth holds the record for appointing 14 Prime Ministers so far.

A total of 79 Prime Ministers have ruled the country since 1721 in the history of Britain. A total of 14 of them completed their terms under Queen Elizabeth. Liz Truss is the 15th and third female Prime Minister on this list.

From Winston Churchill to Margaret Thatcher of ‘Iron Lady’ fame, he has crowned the UK’s most notable or most controversial prime ministers.

Winston Churchill (1951-55)

Winston Churchill was the first Prime Minister of the United Kingdom who served under Queen Elizabeth from 1951 to 1955. However, she is best known for her historic contribution to World War II during her first term as Prime Minister between 1949–45 under King George VI. When the incumbent Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigned during the crisis, Winston Churchill became Prime Minister for the first time after forming an alliance with the Labour, Liberal and Conservative parties. He was the man behind the grand alliance with Russia and America against Germany in the war. During his second term he focused mainly on building Anglo-American relations and working to maintain the strength of the British Empire.

Anthony Eden (1955-57)

Anthony Eden became the next Prime Minister in April 1955. However, the second prime minister saw his popularity decline during Queen Elizabeth’s reign as his opinion poll approval rating fell from 70 to 40 percent in a year. The Suez Canal conspiracy later led to his downfall. He resigned as Prime Minister in 1957 due to constant criticism

Harold Macmillan (1957-63)

After the resignation of Anthony Eden, Harold Macmillan was sworn in as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom in 1957. He had the grave responsibility of rescuing the United Kingdom from the depths of turmoil. In addition to handling the job brilliantly, he managed to maintain his leadership in the 1959 general elections as well.

Alec Douglas-Home (1963-64)

Conservative Party leader Alec Douglas briefly served as Prime Minister from 1963 to 1964. He was the second Prime Minister of the 20th century to serve for such a short time in the United Kingdom.

Harold Wilson (1964-70 and 1974-76)

After Douglas, Labor Party leader Harold Wilson won the election to become the fifth Prime Minister of the United Kingdom during Queen Elizabeth’s reign. He also served as Prime Minister in 1974-76. Under his leadership, the country enacted some important laws on divorce, abortion, homosexuality and the abolition of the death penalty.

Edward Heath (1970-74)

Edward Heath formed the Conservative Party government in the United Kingdom in 1970. He is mainly known for his industrial and economic reform efforts. In 1971, his government passed the Industrial Act which created a stir in the country. This led to miners’ strikes in Britain in 1972 and 1974. At the next election in 1974, he succeeded Harold Wilson for a two-year term.

James Callaghan (1976-79)

Labor Party leader James Callaghan is still the only UK Prime Minister to have held all four major offices of state. He served as Chancellor of the Exchequer, Home Secretary, Foreign Secretary and Prime Minister. He ruled the government at a time when the country was suffering from hyperinflation. He also took significant steps to eliminate racial discrimination in the country. Callaghan mainly gained popularity in 1976 for passing the Endangered Wildlife Act, Race Relations Act, etc.

Margaret Thatcher (1979-90)

Baroness Margaret Thatcher of the Conservative Party, known as the ‘Iron Lady’, was not only the first female British Prime Minister, she also became the longest serving Prime Minister at 11 years.

John Major (1990-97)

John Major, leader of the Conservative Party, succeeded Margaret Thatcher as Prime Minister. During his tenure, Britain’s economy continued to prosper. He also witnessed the launch of the Northern Ireland peace process during his tenure.

Tony Blair (1997-2007)

Tony Blair of the Labor Party was the longest serving Prime Minister who saw the end of the Northern Irish peace process and the response to the 9/11 and 7/7 terrorist attacks. In 2006, the Israel-Lebanon war led to a massive rebellion in the Labor Party against Tony Blair. He resigned as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom in 2007.

Gordon Brown (2007-10)

Gordon Brown became Prime Minister of Britain in 2007.

David Cameron (2010-2016)

Conservative Party leader David Cameron has successfully led a coalition government in the country. In 2015, he also formed a majority Conservative government after a decade. He established the world’s first green investment bank. His government also passed the UK’s same-sex marriage law. A total of three referendums were conducted during his tenure. In the third referendum, the British people voted for Britain to leave the European Union. Cameron resigned in 2016.

Theresa May (2016-2019)

Theresa May, leader of the Conservative Party, was another UK Prime Minister who took important steps towards protecting the environment and reducing global warming.

Boris Johnson (2019–22)

Boris Johnson took over as Prime Minister after Theresa May resigned in 2019. He gained popularity after completing the Brexit process. Later, he was reappointed the same year after marking one of the biggest victories for the Conservatives. However, inflation in the country increased sharply during his tenure. However, he faced heavy criticism for the Partygate scandal during the Covid pandemic. His government was criticized for raising taxes after taking significant steps to control inflation. He stepped down as prime minister following the resignation of senior cabinet ministers and junior officials such as Treasury chief Rishi Sunak.

(06 Sep)