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Election Battles 1945-1997
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1970: Heath's unexpected triumph
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1970: Edward Heath at Number 10
Heath: The victory few predicted

Watch and listen 1970
The election results from BBC Radio
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Edward Heath speaks out on Powell
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First time voters make themselves heard
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The BBC swingometer runs out of swing
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Liberal leader Jeremy Thorpe: “saddened” by result
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Wilson speaks on his defeat
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Edward Heath, to Labour's deep surprise, rolled into Number 10 with a respectable majority in the summer of 1970, despite the polls, the press and most of the public all firm in the conviction that Labour would be returned to power.

Ironically the dramatic Conservative victory followed one of the least memorable post-war election campaigns.

The month long battle was called by its less than enthused chroniclers an "unpopularity" contest with the public showing a much keener interest in the England football team's attempts to win the 1970 World Cup in Mexico.

Few people apart from, perhaps, Edward Heath himself expected to see the Conservatives back in office, with a sudden swing at the end of the campaign enough to see him carry the day.