What is the Primrose League and where did we come from?
The Primrose League is a patriotic mass-membership organisation (not a political party), inspired by Benjamin Disraeli, former Prime Minister and 1st Earl of Beaconsfield. It was first established in 1883 at a time when there was a need to define conservatism, enhance the ascendancy of Britain and the Empire, strengthen and broaden democracy, counter the rising threat of socialism, and address social tensions - much as is the case today. At its height, our antecedent had a membership of around 2 million. The Primrose League soon became the principal home for patriots with culturally conservative beliefs, throughout the nation.
We are not a political party, nor are we affiliated to any political party. The League is a politically independent, culturally conservative, extra-parliamentary organisation that seeks to influence politics.
Our antecedent organisation was established by Lord Randolph Churchill (Winston Churchill's father), Sir Henry Drummond Wolfe, John Gorst and Sir Alfred Frederic Adolphus Slade in the wake of the Conservative Party's loss to Gladstone in the 1880 election and the death of Benjamin Disraeli in 1881. At the time the population was deeply patriotic but lacked cultural conservative representation to match. Again, much like today.
To paraphrase Winston Churchill's speech to the Primrose League:
Our purpose is to pursue the goal of ever greater confidence, optimism, prosperity, security, pride and patriotism in the United Kingdom, preserve our democratic system and constitutional monarchy, the rights of our citizens, and the broad interests of the Nation against socialist attack. For us, now and henceforward, these must be the main purposes of political action and public life.