On 6 February 1918, the Representation of the People Act 1918 received royal assent. The main focus today, quite rightly, is that women, for the first time, were entitled to vote at elections. But what should not be forgotten is that millions of more men were also allowed to participate in the December 1918 general election as a result of changes made.
After the Third Reform Act of 1884, only around 60 per cent of male householders had the right to vote. In 1912, 7.7 million men were entitled to vote. The size of the electorate almost tripled to 21.4 million in 1918. All of this, of course, was as a result of the Great War. If you risked your life for King and country, it was reasonable to expect that when you returned home you had the right to vote in elections.Read more