Politics thus, centers itself on an organization that systematically arranges people to work for the goal of winning a public office in a nation to influence its policies. Generally, a political party, as an organization seeks to attain power in the government by participating in election campaigns. The groups cause is geared towards winning public office in elections and influencing policy. Sometimes parties are not permitted to choose nor seek power through elections which is why so many turn to lobbying as a form of putting pressure or by working on the public opinion and sometimes even by violence and terrorism. Parties however often adhering to their own certain ideologies may also represent other disparate interests. In effect, some political parties are more concerned with recruiting individuals to give them power in selecting government officials. Other interest groups however, are more concerned with public policy and involve themselves with the elections for the advancement of their own policy interests.
British political history impresses pride in the formation of parties as large associations essentially composed of formidable political organisation into one which has achieved major social and political reforms over the years and during the 20th century. The major political parties include the reigning Labour Party; the Conservative as its opposition; the Cooperative Party and the Liberal Democrats. The future agenda according to Dalton (1988)1 of these political parties is to ensure that the values become deeply embedded in the culture to achieve the lasting economic and political scenario in Britain. These parties are groups of people who come together out of a common desire to obtain political power as a controlled group of elites contending for a position; cadres and sub-elites or the mass-membership party;(Downs 1957)2 that adhere to the joint formulation of interests around program platforms and the allocation of political values according to socially accepted preferences. The aggregations of functions in particular, seem to have been threatened over the past 30 years that is most notably seen by the inability of mainstream parties to mobilise citizens (Dalton and Wattenberg 2000)3. The declining membership levels-overall patterns from the 1960s point towards a significant fall in the numbers of party members (Katz and Mair 1994)4.
To recall, politics was dominated by the Whigs and Tories prior to the mid-19th century as pointed out by Fisher(2000)5. Small kingdoms and crumbling organizations examined the variation in constituency of party memberships and resources. They were not political parties in the modern sense but a group with loose alliances of interests and individuals. The Whigs were associated with the newly emerging moneyed industrial classes, and the Tories were associated with the landed gentry and the Anglican Church. These two parties dominated the political scene until the 1920s, when the Liberal Party declined in popularity and suffered a long stream of resignations. Although the party system is popularly characterized as a two party system, there is usually the third party presence which in 2001 elections showed at least 71 different parties(Dalton)6. The system is best understood at its evolution to qualify a sound description of their differences and their foundations from