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Rivers of Blood Speech

In April 1968 the British politician Enoch Powell made a controversial speech in Birmingham, in which he warned his audience of what he believed would be the consequences of continued immigration from the Commonwealth to Britain. Because of its allusion to Virgil saying that the Tiber would foam with blood, Powell's warning became known as the Rivers of Blood speech. Edward Heath sacked Powell from his Shadow Cabinet and Powell would never hold another senior political post.

However, Powell gained considerable support from the public, receiving over 100,000 letters. Some supportive commentators attributed the surprise 1970 election victory by Edward Heath on the swing in Powell's West Midlands heartland, while other more hostile commentators have said that this speech alienated many immigrants from the UK Conservative Party.

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