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On the evening of December 22, 1951, Winston Churchill made a party political broadcast in which he declared he would tell his listeners the “broad truths of our national life and policy.” Warning that Britain had been within “a few months of national bankruptcy,” he said that emergency measures had been taken to meet the crisis and added that when parliament would meet in January fresh proposals would be introduced, many of which he acknowledge would be “unpleasant.” The government, however, would not “shrink from any measure, however, unpopular, for which our duty calls.” Churchill had only recently returned as prime minister at the general election held a few weeks earlier.

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