"Britain was on its knees on May 3, 1979 when Margaret Thatcher was elected prime minister. Ever since World War II, politicians had made it their priority to manage what they considered to be its inevitable decline.
Mrs Thatcher was having none of that. Her priority was to make Britain powerful again, economically, if not strategically. And by 1983 — the end of her first term — it was clear she had succeeded.
It is hard to exaggerate the pitiful state of Britain in the Seventies. The reckless economic policy of Mrs Thatcher’s predecessor as Tory leader, Ted Heath, who between 1970 and 1974 printed money as though it were going out of fashion, had left a legacy of high inflation, peaking at 27 per cent in 1975."