Although the United Kingdom did not suffer any nuclear attacks, the effects of full-scale nuclear war on other countries had severe effects on the environment, and thus on agriculture. This in its turn had a knock-on effect on the British economy, and mass riots or uprisings broke out. The government quickly collapsed and chaos overran the country.
The situation quickly turned. From the madness of the violence came the Norsefire regime, a group of fascists that united with surviving large companies and businesses, giving them the appearance of wealth and stability. However, while the Norsefire regime did indeed bring order back to the country, this order came at a terrible cost.
Minorities such as black people, Indians, Chinese and Pakistanis were rounded up and sent to concentration camps. Other groups such as Jews and homosexuals were also persecuted. With their potential enemies all removed within a short space of time, Norsefire began consolidating their power over the country. They began to sink their influence into the Church of England, promoting and demoting members of the clergy as they saw fit. They also took over the television companies, creating NTV (Norsefire Television), and implemented the technologies which would allow for a closely-monitored society, including closed circuit television cameras. It is shown, however, that they allowed the monarchy to continue their existence (although perhaps they only do so in the role of a figurehead).
- The Eye: Visual surveillance. Chaired by Conrad Heyer.
- The Ear: Audio surveillance. Chaired by Brian Etheridge.
- The Mouth: Propaganda. Chaired by Roger Dascombe.
- The Nose: Police/Criminal investigation. Chaired by Eric Finch.
- The Finger: Secret military police. Initially chaired by Derek Almond; later chaired by Peter Creedy after Almond's death.
- The Head: Highest level of government. Chaired by Adam Susan/Sutler, and consisting of the above.