Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, LG, OM, PC, FRS, FRIC was a British stateswoman who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990 and the Leader of the Conservative Party from 1975 to 1990.
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is the head of Her Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom.
MARGARET THATCHER on 60 Minutes CBC Interview 1985 by HC Fischer-Leskov
She was the longest-serving British prime minister of the 20th century, and the first woman to have held the office.
MARGARET THATCHER, TV Interview 9 March 1991 by HC Fischer-Leskov
A Soviet journalist dubbed her The Iron Lady, a nickname that became associated with her uncompromising politics and leadership style.
As Prime Minister, she implemented policies that have come to be known as Thatcherism.
Thatcherism describes the conviction politics, economic, social policy and political style of the British Conservative Party politician Margaret Thatcher, who was leader of her party from 1975 to 1990.
A research chemist before becoming a barrister, Thatcher was elected Member of Parliament for Finchley in 1959.
A barrister is a type of lawyer in common law jurisdictions who works at higher levels of court.
Edward Heath appointed her Secretary of State for Education and Science in his 1970 government.
Sir Edward Richard George "Ted" Heath, KG, MBE, PC was a British politician who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1970 to 1974 and the Leader of the Conservative Party from 1965 to 1975.
In 1975, Thatcher defeated Heath in the Conservative Party leadership election to become Leader of the Opposition and became the first woman to lead a major political party in the United Kingdom.
She became Prime Minister after winning the 1979 general election.
On moving into 10 Downing Street, Thatcher introduced a series of political and economic initiatives intended to reverse high unemployment and Britain's struggles in the wake of the Winter of Discontent and an ongoing recession.
The Winter of Discontent refers to the winter of 1978–79 in the United Kingdom, during which there were widespread strikes by public sector trade unions demanding larger pay rises, following the ongoing pay caps of the Labour Party government led by James Callaghan against Trades Union Congress opposition to control inflation, during the coldest winter for 16 years.
10 Downing Street, colloquially known in the United Kingdom as Number 10, is the headquarters of Government of the United Kingdom and the official residence and office of the First Lord of the Treasury, a post which, for much of the 18th and 19th centuries and invariably since 1905, has been held by the Prime Minister.
Her political philosophy and economic policies emphasised deregulation, flexible labour markets, the privatisation of state-owned companies, and reducing the power and influence of trade unions.
Deregulation is the process of removing or reducing state regulations, typically in the economic sphere.
Privatization, also spelled privatisation, has several meanings.
Thatcher's popularity during her first years in office waned amid recession and high unemployment, until victory in the 1982 Falklands War and the recovering economy brought a resurgence of support, resulting in her re-election in 1983.
The Falklands War, also known as the Falklands Conflict, Falklands Crisis, and the Guerra del Atlántico Sur, was a ten-week war between Argentina and the United Kingdom over two British overseas territories in the South Atlantic: the Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.
She narrowly escaped an assassination attempt in 1984.
Thatcher was re-elected for a third term in 1987.
During this period her support for a Community Charge was widely unpopular, and her views on the European Community were not shared by others in her Cabinet.
The Community Charge was a system of taxation introduced in replacement of domestic rates in Scotland from 1989, prior to its introduction in England and Wales from 1990.
A poll tax, also known as a head tax or capitation, is a tax of a uniform, fixed amount applied to an individual in accordance with the census.
She resigned as Prime Minister and party leader in November 1990, after Michael Heseltine launched a challenge to her leadership.
Michael Ray Dibdin Heseltine, Baron Heseltine CH PC is a British Conservative politician and businessman.
After retiring from the Commons in 1992, she was given a life peerage as Baroness Thatcher which entitled her to sit in the House of Lords.
The House of Lords of the United Kingdom, referred to ceremonially as the House of Peers, is the upper house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
In the United Kingdom, life peers are appointed members of the peerage whose titles cannot be inherited, in contrast to hereditary peers.
After a series of small strokes in 2002, she was advised to withdraw from public speaking.
Despite this, she managed to pre-record a eulogy to Ronald Reagan prior to his death, which was broadcast at his funeral in 2004.
Ronald Wilson Reagan was an American politician and actor who served as the 40th President of the United States from 1981 to 1989.
In 2013, she died of another stroke in London, at the age of 87.
She is regarded as a controversial yet epochal figure of British politics, and arguments over the ramifications of Thatcherism persist.