Liberal Party (UK)
|Founded||9 June 1859|
|Dissolved||2 March 1988|
|Merger of||Whigs, Radicals, Peelites|
|Merged into||Liberal Democrats|
|Headquarters||Offices at the National Liberal Club, 1 Whitehall Place, London|
• Classical liberalism
• Social liberalism
|National affiliation||SDP–Liberal Alliance (1981–88)|
|European affiliation||Federation of European Liberal Democrats (1976–88)|
|International affiliation||Liberal International (1947–88)|
|European Parliament group||Liberal and Democratic Group (1976–85)|
Liberal and Democratic Reformist Group (1985–88)
H. H. Asquith was Liberal Prime Minister between 1908 and 1916. He was followed by David Lloyd George, whose premiership lasted until 1922. At that time the coalition the party had formed with the Conservative Party in World War I came to an end.
By the end of the 1920s, the Labour Party had replaced the Liberals as the Conservatives' main rival. The party went into decline. By the 1950s, it won no more than six seats at general elections.
Apart from notable by-election victories, the party's fortunes did not improve significantly until it formed the SDP-Liberal Alliance with the newly formed Social Democratic Party (SDP) in 1981. At the 1983 General Election, the Alliance won over a quarter of the vote, but only 23 of the 650 seats it contested. At the 1987 General Election, it won less than 23% of the vote.
The Liberal and Social Democratic parties merged in 1988 to form the Liberal Democrats.