The speech – and the aftermath
Enoch Powell, the Tory MP for Wolverhampton South West, delivered his notorious speech on 20 April 1968 to a party meeting in Birmingham, days before the second reading of the 1968 race relations bill.
Powell spoke of potential ethnic strife should large-scale immigration continue and was sacked as a frontbench spokesman by then Conservative leader Edward Heath. However, he was applauded by sections of the media and public.
Following his sacking, thousands marched to Downing Street to show support. Counter-protests were also held, with thousands calling for Powell’s arrest. After the speech, newspapers reported violent and racially motivated attacks on communities, including in Wolverhampton.